Name: Kayla Hutzler
Job Title and Description: Editorial/Production Assistant for Men’s Fitness, Muscle & Fitness and Muscle & Fitness HERS.
College/Major: Manhattan College, communications major
Twitter Handle: @KayHutz
Her Campus: What does your current job entail? Is there such a thing as a typical day?
Kayla Hutzler: Working on the edit and production sides of four different publications definitely means that there is no typical day. My main responsibilities are: getting products in for various photo shoots and gear reviews; keeping track of writer’s due dates and making sure the content gets placed on our company-wide server so that design and art can take a look at them; brainstorming/pitching/writing the health, fat loss, nutrition and style pages for Muscle & Fitness HERS and acting as an extra set of eyes for copy-editing.
HC: What was your first entry-level job in your field and how did you get it?
KH: After my internships at Hearst, my first entry-level job was at a business publication called Luxury Daily. I actually heard about the job through Media Bistro, followed up, and went in for an edit test and then a final interview.
HC: What is one thing you wish you knew about your industry when you first started out that you know now?
KH: You should always ask questions when you are getting assigned a project or article such as the amount of words, format, tone of the article, etc. The worst feeling in the world is to do a whole project, and then find out that you wasted your time and need to do it again. And always, always, always write everything down—if you are an intern or an assistant, a notepad should be attached to your hand.
HC: Who is one person who changed your professional life for the better?
KH: While it is very difficult to name one person between all my internship supervisors and professors, I would have to say Harper’s Bazaar Fashion News/Features Director Ana Maria Wilson was a major influence and continues to be an incredible role model. Despite being incredibly busy (and pregnant!) while I was at Bazaar, she was always incredibly welcoming and showed her support of my budding career in the types of tasks she would assign and the constructive, though never critical, feedback she gave to me.
HC: What words of wisdom do you find most valuable?
KH: Unfortunately, I cannot remember the person from whom I first heard this, but I couldn’t agree more with “There is such a thing as a stupid question.” Before asking your supervisor or boss how to get to a certain photo studio, or what the company’s vacation days are, Google it or use the company’s Website to try to find the answer – or even, ask someone on the same level as you are in the company.
HC: What is one mistake you made along the way and what did you learn from it?
KH: I think one of my biggest mistakes at the beginning was being too shy and too intimidated by my supervisors. During my first few days of interning, I felt forgotten about, but did nothing about it. However, a lot of the time in this industry people are just too busy to ask for help. If you find yourself lacking any type of work, speak up and ask around – someone, in some department, will always need help.
HC: What is the best part of your job?
KH: The perks! Celebrities, branded gifts, movie-premieres. I’m kidding (a little) – the best thing is that if you are at a publication where you truly enjoy the material and topics that you cover, most days won’t seem like work and in fact, you will often make some of your best friends through these jobs.
HC: What do you look for when considering hiring someone?
KH: Enthusiasm and knowledge of the magazine – not the industry, but the actual publication. If someone can point to a section that they really like and explain why, or a feature that left a lasting impression on them, that’s a good sign. If I ask you who last month’s cover celeb was, and you have no idea, than I don’t know why are you in my office.
HC: What advice would you give to a 20-something with similar aspirations?
KH: Take on everything. We are young enough to have less “real-life” responsibilities (kids, college tuitions, etc.) that we can really focus on larger projects, taking on extra work, and seeking out freelance opportunities. All writing clips and editing opportunities are good experience and will help you learn more and make new connections for the future.