Anna Von Frances – Pink Mafia, Don – PR & Event Management

  1. What does a typical Thursday look like for you, starting from when you wake up – to heading to bed?

Wake up to several phones ringing at 8am. Hit snooze. Check blackberry (that I sleep with). Hit snooze. Finally get up. Coffee. Email. Think about a shower, but have none. Breakfast. Coffee. Email. By noon, make some lunch, and start the phone conferences. Meetings. Coffee. Meetings. iPod metal mix. Meetings. Gym with the trainer. Finally get in a shower. If I closed a deal, I take my ass out for a nice meal. Or buy something frivolous. Coffee. Go by a club, either for my own party, or a client’s club, or hit a club to cover for my column, or go to a friend’s bar. Have first beer and first cigarette. Feel the relief that there isn’t so many emails now that the weekend is approaching. But the relief fades as soon as I start on my cell phone. Throughout the day, I’ll probably make 30 or 40 phone calls, send a few hundred emails. Check in with my staff, my street team, publicists, and my mom. In between all this, there are hundreds of texts. Some of them naughty—hey, a girl’s gotta flirt-but most of them just to avoid more phone calls that take much longer. By 10pm, I’m having bar meetings with new clients, potential clients, bands, promo companies, or my “friends” who are also people I work with. If I’m lucky, I’m home by midnight. And if I’m even luckier I remember to brush my teeth and wash my face before hitting the sack. This of course, is a perfect day. A perfect, well-oiled Thursday.  

  1. What was your first job out of school?

My first job was in high school. I started babysitting because I couldn’t work at F/X cause I was only 15. Within 6 months I was contracting out babysitters, doing the nanny thing in the summer and handling half a dozen families on my own. By the time I was 16, I wrote a proposal to F/X and became the youngest person they had ever hired. I was totally hooked on closing the deal after that. bartended my way through university, so I never really stopped working. The first job I got out of University was Executive Assistant to the head of PR for Alliance Atlantis or something like that, which I talked my way into, beating out 200 other much more qualified applicants. I was way too young for all that responsibility and only lasted 6 weeks. 

  1. What are the 3 skills you require most to do your job well?

Thick skin, and the ability to out think everyone else. For modern women, this third skill is actually much more natural than it sounds. Finally you have to be dissatisfied enough to need to change it. Drive is everything. 

  1. What do you love most about your career?

I don’t ever have to work with assholes. The flexibility is phenomenal. And most of all, the feeling that I only have myself to answer to. 

  1. If a woman wanted to get into this business, what are your recommendations of how they should start?

I would tell her to find another, older, more established woman that she admired and stop at nothing to work under her. During her stint as fabulous-older-woman’s-bitch, she should listen, take notes and figure out how she could improve on that skill set. Then hope that this amazing mentor would stick around to help her to the next level and the next, until one day she’d get to give back by taking her out for a stiff martini and a nice dinner at her favourite joint. And most of all, be a smart worker who will do anything to get the job done. This is a skill almost completely lost on young people. If I were 20 right now, I’d have all these bitches jobs. 

  1. Do you have any warnings?

Beware of women who think they have to act like men to get ahead. Men have a unique sense of competition that doesn’t sit well with women, so when we compete like them, we end up stepping on each other. Any woman who thinks she has to act like a man to get ahead will take her first shot at the woman sitting next to her. 

  1. If you could try a different career on for a year, what would it be?

There are tons of careers I’d love to have, all of them totally unachievable because of my entrepreneurial instincts. Home Depot cashier. Florist. Full time stay-at-home mom. Trophy wife. Lifeguard. The boredom sounds amazing for about five seconds. I would do them all if I could come back in one year. But careers are something you build your entire life, they’re not a prepackage condo you pick from a catalogue, you can only see the finished house once you dig in the foundation yourself. God, was that too cheesy?

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