genYOU Story 39 – Irina Stavrou

Our genYOU Story No. 39 features determined #goalsetter Irina Stavrou! Irina’s story reminds us that a positive attitude is the game-changer when it comes to your career, and the only person stopping you from achieving your dreams – is YOU!

Name: Irina Stavrou (pictured left)
Current Role: Second Year Business and Media and Communications student at QUT; Intern at 4zzz & COCOM Communications

Could you tell us a bit about yourself and where you are headed in your career right now?

Well for starters, my name is Irina, I’m 19 and I’m majoring in Public Relations at QUT. My biggest task so far; completing my second year of University, as well as keeping on top of work and an internship. I also really like Italian food and a good wine and dine with a few friends (hint: this is how to win me over always!).

I have just completed my part-time contract as an events assistant with Bright Humans, which is genYOU’s parent company. Additionally, I am working for a small construction company and completing an internship at a PR agency. I’ve really enjoyed the skills I’ve picked up from each job so far – they’ve made me become more resilient and efficient. I really feel as if all these skills are prepping me for possible jobs I may go for in the future. I’ve been extremely lucky to gain this experience!

How has or how is generationYOU helping you achieve your goals?

I can honestly say, the opportunities I’ve been given to talk to different people in the industry and the skills I’ve learnt have been great!

I’ve really enjoyed hearing from genYOU’s guest speakers. What I find interesting about each one is that they have walked their own path, and endured their own failures, however they all persisted through to reach their own successes. They gave me the motivation to be determined in reaching my own goals. Despite the circumstances sometimes, it can be hard to stay focussed on what you truly desire, so looking up to them and seeing that they’ve persisted through has been a really big help.

I really enjoyed the #NoFilter approach, as I felt the advice imparted on us was extremely useful without bullsh*tting the nitty gritty of it all. It also helped me connect with those who are either still studying in my field, or connecting with those in the industry who could give me advice on how how to get ahead.

Who is your biggest inspiration and why?

Well I have a few. I’ll be as brief as I can.

The first are my parents. I see the valuable skills they’ve taught me to become the determined person I am today. Hell, I don’t think I would’ve been able to do half the things I can do now without their guidance.

As someone who wasn’t able to speak until they were three and a half years old, it was very frustrating to communicate with others when I was younger. However, my parents helped me find avenues where I could improve my communication abilities, fuelling confidence in myself. Thanks to them, I became a national public speaker and qualified drama teacher, all while studying and working in the communications industry! They were there every single step of the way, and honestly, I can’t thank them enough.

My other role model is Mirand Priestly from The Devil Wears Prada. I admire her ruthlessness, calmness and control over every situation she’s in. If there’s anyone who I want to be, it’s her for sure. Aside from her stone-cold personality, I love how she knows exactly who she is and what she wants.

What is the one piece of advice you would love to share with your millennial peers as you reflect on your own journey?

First things first – be determined. Pursue your goals and don’t be lazy. If you have a dream, then go for it. Create a plan as to how you will get to your destination, seek advice from those who are good role models, and don’t listen to negative opinions.

Don’t overthink everything and compare yourself to anyone else. Overanalysing a situation can have a really negative impact on perceptions of yourself! Sometimes you just need to go for it and take a risk (a calculated risk)! The worst thing that could happen is you either learn from the mistake and fix it, or it just turns out to be a great decision! Things always work themselves out in the end; there’s always a solution.

So don’t be afraid to take big steps, face your goals head-on and go out there and be you. Yes, it all sounds corny, but I promise you that the moment you begin to do these things, you sure as hell won’t look back.