At Babbel, our endgame is getting people to have conversations with other people, in a new language. There are fantastic folks here making that possible. In our “Behind The Scenes” series, we sit down with them to provide a glimpse into who makes it all work, what they do, and where their heads are at.
This round we’re talking to Andrea Villagomez, who just joined as one of Babbel’s Internal Communications Managers.
Hi Andrea! Tell us about your position at Babbel? What do you do on a typical day?
As Internal Communications Manager, my role is to keep all Babbelonians updated about what is going on in the company and to translate the company strategy & culture into a familiar voice that tells the story of Babbel on a daily basis. I am also responsible for managing and measuring our internal channels such as the newsletter, the all hands meeting and the official slack channel. Also, communications is a two way street, so we listen to our employees’ feedback and we design strategies according to their needs.
Which languages do you speak/are currently learning?
I was born and raised in Mexico therefore I can speak fluent Spanish, but I grew up bilingually, so I can also speak English. I am still on my learning journey with German and hopefully I can soon start learning a new language like Italian. I just love how it sounds!
What were you doing before you joined Babbel?
After finishing my Masters and working for eight years in different areas such as design, Internal Comms and events in Mexico City for a pharmaceutical company, one day I had a moment of clarity and thought it was time for me to see something else. I wanted to take a break, to travel and move to another country to start over. That was when I decided to move to Germany.
Before establishing in Hamburg, I got the chance to travel for almost a year to different places in Asia, Europe and Africa (thankfully at this time the pandemic hasn’t started yet). During my travels, I learned a lot about myself and the places I visited; from new favorite dishes, to how to pack lightly and that sometimes things do not go as planned, but you have to make it fun anyway and keep going with the flow.
When I came to Hamburg I was determined to learn the language and become adapted to my new city, even though I didn’t think I would survive my first winter, a lot of other challenges came through like bureaucracy, difficulty finding a job in my field and feeling away from home.
In the end, I survived and managed to put all my energy and patience into developing my language skills, keeping an open mind and learning a bit everyday. After 3 years of living here, I am very happy I went through this journey and I got a job that gives me excitement, challenges and learnings.
You were onboarded remotely. Tell us about your experience!
My onboarding expectations were totally different. I wasn’t sure if I was going to get all the information I needed to feel connected to the team, but from the very first moment I felt welcomed and the People & Culture team helped me understand the company structure, culture and vision of Babbel. I can say that Babbel is made up of great people who are passionate about what they do as well as our learners and languages. Also, I was amazed by how diverse Babbel is and how the different perspectives, backgrounds and interests are considered very valuable for the company. I am looking forward to meeting everyone and most of all visiting our new offices in Berlin!
What do you want to do/accomplish/pursue at Babbel?
I hope that I can contribute to create better understanding, that with our strategies and communication, Babbelonians comprehend our purpose and feel proud to be part of it, and that as a learning company, we keep delivering a product that helps people, not only to learn a language, but feel connected to others, to understand a culture and feel part of it.
Since we are now all working from home, how have you adjusted to this situation? Do you have any tips to share for WFH productivity?
Because of my background in visual communication, I believe that “love comes through the eyes”. Therefore, it is very important to have a designated workplace that has good light and has things that you like. Mostly, it should feel comfortable, so that when you see it you feel like starting your work day. Also, taking breaks and connecting with people, even if it is only online, has helped me to feel more adjusted to this situation.
Thanks for taking the time to chat with me, Andrea and welcome on board!
Want to work with Andrea? Check out our latest openings here!