In Dynamic Duos, Mumbrella each week asks two members of the same organisation with a professional and personal affiliation to share with readers the importance of workplace relationships in an increasingly hybridised world of work.
Rhiannon Joyce: Rubes and I first met in 2020 when Mich, Zara and I were interviewing for the content coordinator position at Shameless Media. The interview process was pretty intense because we ended up having well over 600 applicants, so you can imagine how much of a superstar she is to stand out amongst the pack. To me, Rubes was a frontrunner from the get-go: she had great presence, confidence and nailed the tasks we set for her so I was adamant she was the right person to work alongside me in the partnerships team.
Fast forward to today, and Rubes and I have cultivated a really lovely balance between friends and colleagues. While we are sitting at our desks, you’ll invariably hear our conversations jump from forecasting and content scheduling to weekend antics at Electric (mostly Rubes) and what we’re wearing to the next Shameless team lunch (mostly me). Weirdly, with all the ‘planning’ we still manage to show up to lunch in near-identical looks. See? Dynamic Duo!
On a serious note, Rubes is the person who can ground me in a chaotic moment. Sometimes in this line of work, things go wrong (shock!) and it’s comforting to know that as my brain moves 1,000 kilometres an hour trying to find a solution, Rubes will be there to remind me it will work out (as it always does). She’s also always ready to take action right beside me. Having a team member as reliable as Rubes in these moments is something I’m incredibly grateful for.
The thing about working at Shameless is we have a pretty unique approach to partnerships. We value community and content over everything and so it’s paramount that our brand partnerships reflect both our values and the values of our community. Rubes really gets this and has no qualms gently communicating that to our partners where necessary. 15 months into the role, Rubes has become a leading point of contact with a handful of brand partners and I am such a ‘proud mum’ seeing her take the lead across these accounts. There is a bunch of trust there (after all, some of these are clients we’ve had for years) but she continues to rise to the occasion every time.
I love seeing her confidence grow with every month and you can bet I want her to work alongside me for as long as possible.
Ruby Tonzing: My first encounter with Rhi was a phone call when I was interviewing for the content coordinator position at Shameless Media. She had such a big, vibrant personality that you could sense even over the phone. She was professional but also disarming: she knew exactly how to make you feel comfortable. It’ll sound weird, but even then I knew we had incredible chemistry.
Once the interview process was over and I started in my role, our connection was pretty instant. Truthfully, it kind of had to be. We work incredibly closely on all things partnerships and always have a few things we’re juggling at the one time, so being able to (very bluntly) get sh*t done is really important. Given this is my first job out of uni, Rhi was patient and really helped me learn the ropes for the first couple of months. She’s not one to hold your hand (literally or figuratively), but she strikes a great balance between being there to support you and letting you jump in the deep end.
It helps that in a social capacity, we have pretty similar interests and the same dark(ish!) sense of humour. Rhi is someone I can and do go to about anything. She’s one of my biggest confidants and I hope I am for her, too.
It’s been eighteen months since I started and now that I am more established in my role, it feels like our working relationship is strengthened with every passing week. Having more autonomy in my role and being able to shadow her in Partnerships Land is a real privilege. Let me tell you, watching Rhi in action is something else. She is a powerhouse and a force to be reckoned with. Picking up even just a few of her unique skills has been amazing.
Rhi Rhi (as she is often referred to) may hate hugs from me and she may sigh every time I text her saying “can I vent?”, but we have the best working and personal relationship. She’s a bomb boss and an even better friend.
Rhiannon on Ruby:
Most memorable moment with Ruby: The most *wholesome* moment is our super cute lunchtime walks where we talk about everything but work.
Best word to describe Ruby: Reliable
Ruby’s most annoying habit or endearing behaviour: She has particularly bougie taste when it comes to company lunches. With her penchant for drinking cocktails (always, and exclusively) it’s a wonder the company is still profitable…
Ruby on Rhiannon:
Most memorable moment with Rhiannon: Starting this position during the pandemic meant that once we got out of lockdown, it was a real privilege to be able to attend events together and bond away from the usual day-to-day. From daily wholesome walks, to meetings off-site with amazing brands, and the glittery industry parties with free drinks (c’mon, I’m only human), we have plenty of fun together.
Best word to describe Rhiannon: Compelling
Rhiannon’s most annoying habit or endearing behaviour: Rhi talks almost solely in marketing jargon (which is both annoying and endearing). Being able to decipher what she is talking about has become a great skill of mine.
If you and a colleague would like to submit your story to Dynamic duos, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.