Today was my last day at Edelman. The last few days have been full of mixed emotions; after five and a half years I’m sad to say goodbye to many friends (both colleagues and clients) but I’m also raring to begin my next chapter. Edelman has been my life, it’s familiar, it’s my norm (some weeks I’ve spent more time at my desk than at my flat…). But there are exciting things ahead, my departure means the beginning of a new adventure - and I’m itching to get scratching.
It’s worth pointing out, before I rattle on, that Edelman Technology has pretty impressive, previous form on leaving gifts. There have been videos, infographics and even an iPad app. It might be because when you’re lucky enough to work with friends you celebrate their departure spectacularly, it might be because our employers allow us the freedom to run wild on extra-curicular pursuits - to hell with billable hours (the same reason we staged Gleedelman, no doubt). It might just be because we’re a soppy bunch. Nevertheless a card from Paperchase, hurredly signed, never really cuts it.
I don’t often write proper posts - but after my
colleagues friends raised the bar on leaving dos I thought it appropriate to a) thank them again here and b) share the fun I’ve been having.
It started with a lunch
Last Wednesday I was having lunch with the Naked_Pheasant and Nicky Brzeska. Rather unexpectadly a package was delivered to our table. Addressed to me the package opened to reveal:
- A very retro looking Nokia
- A sinister note
- 3 pieces of a jigsaw puzzle
Switching on the phone, I received some teasing text-messages asking me to make sure my phone was switched on at 8am the following morning.
It began again with breakfast
So I woke up the next day, switched on the phone and was instructed to be at Pret
on Victoria Street by 9. When there I was told to ask for Andreas, the manager, and say “I’m just a small town girl, living in a lonely world”.
I laughed. My colleagues were insane - but this was going to be fun. I dashed off to Pret, where I was met by a snaking queue of commuters thirsty for their morning coffee fix. I walked to the front of the queue and sheepishly asked if Andreas was there. The line of baristers raised their heads like inquisitive, giggling meerkats. Andreas replied “Yes, do you have something for me”. I, figuring it was in for a penny, in a for a pound, very boldly answered with my code line
. The queue of commuters looked a bit confused. Andreas handed me my next envelope and told me to take anything I wanted to eat or drink, on the house. The queue of commuters looked really confused. I grabbed a bacon sandwich, said my thank yous and stumbled out of Pret opening my next envelope.
(Can I pause to say a massive THANKS to Andreas and the staff at Pret for being such good sports. I also thank you for the Ham and Greve sandwiches. I have eaten many of those over the years).
The day continued with tasks
My second envelope started a theme for the day - each stage marked by a new clue and three jigsaw pieces:
- Clue 2: say “Video Killed the Radio Star” to ground floor reception
- Clue 3: climb the stairs to 3rd floor, following the yellow brick road and look for the Wizard
- Clue 4: Sing Stevie Wonder’s Superstition to the WIzard
At this point I was given a reprieve and told to report to my desk, which had been lovingly adorned with Edel photos
It began again after lunch
The afternoon was then spent collecting more jigsaw pieces
- Clues 4 & 5 involved visiting our Corporate department and signing One Direction at Emily Middleton, and then serenading Jo Sheldon with “Your Sex is on Fire”. All in a day’s work.
- Clue 6 involved rummaging through Edelman’s library (encompassing the entire Penguin Classics catalogue), only to find jigsaw pieces in the very last book I looked in
- The final clue was lodged in some awful office art in the Edelman bar
My quest complete I then travelled back upstairs to our department - to be received with colleagues, beer, the remaining pieces of my jigsaw (a very nice photo of the team) and a video including messages from ex-colleagues from far flung places like South Africa, San Mateo and the toilets of Slam.
It ended with a drink
So that was how i spent one of my penultimate days at Edelman (the fun was actually last Thursday, so my leaving drinks coincided with the Bank Holiday).
Thanks Edelman. Thanks for an incredible five years. To say I was overwhelmed by the effort, thought and unbillable time that went into my leaving do would be an understatement. Special call outs to the masterminds who could rival Anneka Rice in planning a treasure hunt: George, Lucy and Nicky.
You are all awesome.