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With Career Accelerator entering its 5th season, we had the chance to chat with Debbie Lee who was a part of the program in its second year, and get a sense of how it has impacted her career since then. Debbie is currently a Pursuit Specialist at Forge Media + Design

1. What originally drew you to the AMA Toronto Career Accelerator program and what year did you participate?

I participated in 2019. I was looking to make a career change, but I had very little experience in the marketing field. When I heard about the Career Accelerator program, I was very excited about the chance to get to know and learn from mentors who have been in the field for many years. Marketing is a wide field; it encompasses everything from content creation to strategic insight and so much more. To someone looking in from the outside, it was very hard finding a starting point to understand and plan a career in the marketing sector.

2. How did your mentor and the Career Accelerator program impact your career? 

At the start of our mentorship, Ashley told me that he was not here to tell me what to do, but to help me find out what I want to do. He did exactly that. Through our monthly meetings, Ashley helped me explore my strengths and interests, as well as providing a more in-depth perspective on how to achieve success in my career. Before the Career Accelerator program, I was searching for a job. By the end of the year, I had a job that I enjoyed, with the tools that I needed to be successful in the role.

3. What are some key takeaways that you learned from your mentor and this experience overall? 

One of my main key takeaways is the importance of looking at the big picture. It’s easy to be distracted by focusing on the current task, as we want our work to be perfect. However, it’s important to take a step back to reevaluate the situation once in a while. Doing so will allow us to prioritize tasks, communicate with our team members effectively, as well as give us the chance to identify missing opportunities that can take our projects to the next level.

4. 1 reason why you would recommend it to someone else? 

With multiple mentorship meetings spread over a one-year period, mentees have the unique opportunity to take what was learnt from their meeting with an industry professional, and apply this before their next one. The Career Accelerator program is what the mentor and mentee make of it, and anyone looking to start/further their career would benefit from it immensely. 

The Career Accelerator program helps young marketing professionals further their career with the help of an experienced marketing professional. Inspired by the success of Mentor Exchange, this program is specifically designed to meet the needs of junior marketing professionals looking to move up the ladder in their careers, and runs from April to January of each year.

Apply to the 2022/2023 Career Accelerator program by March 13th!

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