How I Found a Job That Lets Me Appreciate the “Serendipity of Life” Every Day
Our mission here at The Muse is simple: to help you find your dream job. So, there’s nothing we love more than hearing about it when you do!
Today we chatted with Menamu Yoshizawa, who recently landed a job at HotelTonight. A big fan of California (and the year-round sunshine), she was thrilled to find a job nearby where she could continue to grow as an individual while simultaneously being a part of a thriving company. And with a fun-loving culture, HotelTonight has truly helped her embrace her spontaneous side.
What’s your title at your new role, and what does this mean in terms of what you’re doing day to day?
I’m a Talent Coordinator, which means I support the recruiting team in ensuring candidates have a great experience with us from the moment they apply. We have an amazing culture at HotelTonight, and we’re always brainstorming new ways to incorporate it into our recruiting process.
Not to toot my team’s horn, but having gone through the process at HotelTonight myself, I was impressed with the communication and sense of respect throughout. I wanted to be on the other side of that, and I knew I had made the right decision when I received an invitation to connect on LinkedIn from Sam Shank, our CEO, on my first day! I thought it was a simple but really nice gesture that made me feel welcomed. HotelTonight is continuing to grow, so it’s an exciting time to be a part of the team and involved in building it.
What were you doing before you landed your new job?
After graduating from college in San Diego, I decided to stay there because I couldn’t bear to leave the year-round summer weather. I’m so glad I did this because I got the opportunity to fall even more in love with the city and its quirky neighborhoods.
While there, I worked in account management for an education consulting company. I served as the liaison between international students interested in studying in the U.S. and partner schools in our network. It was great seeing the students blossom during their time at their new school and even go on to attend top universities.
What were you looking for in a job?
I was looking for a job in which I could continue to make a big impact on an individual level, but I wanted to do this at a company that had an impact on millions of people. The company I previously worked for was small, and there were many aspects of that environment I enjoyed—the fast pace, the room to think outside the box, and the challenges it presented—so I was looking for a similar setting.
When I interviewed for the Talent Coordinator position at HotelTonight, I got the sense that I would learn a lot and have the opportunity to grow with the company, which were big pluses for me.
What attracted you to the company when you found it on The Muse?
I was familiar with the app from way back when HotelTonight was focused on same-day bookings and thought it was great, but I knew little about the company culture. Even in my wildest dreams, I didn’t think I would be working here one day!
After perusing the job description and company profile on The Muse, I became enamored with the company’s mission to enable people to take advantage of the “serendipity of life.” I’ve always been more of a planner, but I’m spontaneous on good days and live for those moments that make you feel alive, whether it’s jet-skiing at questionable speeds or deciding to go on a random, aimless road trip. I love that HotelTonight makes these moments a reality for people, and I think that coming across this job on The Muse itself was serendipitous.
What’s something most people would find surprising about working at HotelTonight?
HotelTonight has 200 employees now, but the executives remain completely approachable. They sit in the same open space as the rest of the team, and even participated in this year’s Hackathon as “sharks” in the style of Shark Tank. This leading by example creates a collaborative, work-hard, play-hard culture.
Another thing not many people outside the company know about is HT Roulette. Once a month, one lucky employee wins a spontaneous trip (he or she has to book the trip within one hour and leave that weekend!) to the destination of his or her choice, and gets to experience our app from the other side. It’s the epitome of HotelTonight and a great experience. In the past, people have gone to Iceland, Lisbon, and Miami.
What’s your favorite part so far about working at HotelTonight?
The people—they were one of the reasons why I decided to join HotelTonight and continue to be one of my favorite parts about working here. Everyone is friendly, passionate, and above all, proud to be a part of the company and its beloved and disruptive product. HotelTonight also has an incredible level of transparency, which further fosters the feeling that we’re all in this together, and it’s a quality I really appreciate in a company. During our weekly “All Hands” meeting, there’s an “Ask Me Anything” section where Sam answers any questions we may have.
I also love when people ask me where I work, and it turns out they’re familiar with HotelTonight. I was at the dentist the other day and three different people had the app on their phone! Of course, when it happens to be their first time hearing about HotelTonight, I have a little speech prepared.
Learn More About Working at HotelTonight!
How did you use The Muse to help you in your job search?
I first discovered The Muse when my friend sent me an article on companies that are “hiring like crazy.” I liked how each company featured employees giving an insider’s perspective on what it’s like working for their company. I remember meeting our QA Engineer, Hope, on my first day and immediately recognizing her from the HotelTonight profile! The pictures and the text are spot on, and it’s a great way for job seekers to get an idea of the company culture and envision themselves working there.
I also thought The Muse had a good curation of job opportunities and companies, and some of the articles were really helpful. I was out of practice with interviewing, so I used the “How to Answer the 31 Most Common Interview Questions” article as a guideline when preparing for my interviews.
Do you have any advice for someone looking for a job as awesome as yours?
It can be easy to feel discouraged when you’re in the middle of a difficult job hunt, but try to stay positive. Reflect on areas you can improve, but know that sometimes things are just out of your control. It’s important to believe in yourself and trust the process; you’ll end up where you’re supposed to.
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