Kiara Schwartz: Today’s Notable Young Professional

Today’s Notable Young Professional is fashion blogger Kiara Schwartz, who’s working with some of the biggest brands in the industry and has even higher ambitions for the future of Tobruck Ave. Here’s what inspired her on her career path…

Elevator Pitch: Describe your job in a nutshell.
My job as a digital influencer is to connect with established and up and coming brands as well as fashion technology companies that are on par with my online persona and act as a platform to communicate their vision and product with my followers through reviews and a trustworthy voice.  

Why did you start working at your company? What was the inspiration for this career route?
I established my blog and social channels because I was enchanted by the social media movement that was beginning to change the face of traditional marketing. My focus has always been on fashion and I believe that fashion bloggers and the world of fashion took to the digital age very early and has somewhat set the tone for the rest of the industries to follow and innovate. I saw an opportunity and I took the leap in joining the movement as well as the step to working for myself and really focus on making the blog my personal career and basically making my own dreams come true.  

What is the best part of what you do on a day-to-day basis?
The best part is that I get to work with amazing people throughout the fashion industry. I work closely with PR companies, marketing managers, social media managers, brand managers as well as fellow bloggers. The industry is very tight knit and everyone is so supportive of each other and I am inspired by everyone I work with every day.

If you would have told me three years ago that today I will have worked closely with brands like Tiffany and Co., Lacoste and Diesel I would have probably laughed and said, only in my dreams. But they have come true and I believe it was all about timing, hard work and treating the blog as my business rather than my hobby, as that was what I envisioned it to be.

Most challenging part?
Time management is always a challenge for me. Not so much starting to work at a specific time, but to actually find a time to stop! It’s hard sometimes to turn off when there is a never ending list of things to do. It is important to find a balance, but its always been a struggle to find that line. 

What is one sign that you’ve seen over the years to suggest that your work/life balance is off?
(Weird, I didn’t even read the next question and my last answer is a perfect lead into this one.) Work/life balance is important; I have learned the hard way where my relationship became affected by constantly only focusing on the never off social media life.

Where do you see yourself in five years?
I see the blog having grown into an online lifestyle destination for fashion, culture, shopping and travel. The rest are all secrets I can’t reveal just yet but there are exciting things down my five-year pipeline.

What is one major challenge that you’ve had to overcome in your career? How did you overcome it?
Geographical challenges might be the ones that are hardest to overcome. I always love to take on as much work as I can and hate turning jobs down just because they are in another city or country. While in Canada now, companies in both NY and LA are pulling on my sleeves to be in one of those cities for jobs and events. It’s frustrating and I wish there were more of me. 

What does success look like to you? Does Money = Happiness?
Success does not = money. Success can be measured in happiness. If you are doing something you are passionate about and you can say you love waking up and doing what you do as a career every day, I think that is success and that is what will create a balance life surrounding your career as well. Success is not just your career, but also your personal life-long happiness.

What is the most memorable milestone in your career?
I would have to go ahead and say shooting and being part of new Tiffany and Co. Tiffany T. It was such an honour to be picked by such a valued company to be part of their campaign. Also, every time some one recognizes what I do or comments on an Instagram post or blog post saying how much they adore TobruckAve, that is a milestone to me.

Do you have any advice for other young professionals?
Staying humble, grateful and respectful of and to your peers is something I have stayed true to and feel like is good advice to others that are starting out on their own career adventure.

Where is your favourite place to wine/ dine in your city and why?
Oh, there are so many amazing places to eat and drink in Vancouver. I don’t feel like I have even been to enough of them to already have a favourite, but so far I would have to say for dinner I love Black Tail Florist and The Parker. Both have an amazing menu and a great atmosphere.

When you’re not working how do you love to spend your “Me” time?
There is barely any ‘me’ time and when there is, I love doing what I do. But, since that is what I am trying to balance out in my life, ‘me’ time is spending time with friends and enjoying the city of Vancouver.

Where is your favourite place to travel? Why?
I have a huge case of the never-ending wanderlust. My favourite places to travel are places I’ve never been before. But to be more specific, I love the beach and the free spirited beach life that comes with it.

I have also somehow managed to live in four of the most sought after cities this past year: Vancouver, LA, NY and Cape Town, which are all amazing in their own special ways.

If you had to choose a theme song, what would it be?
The first song that came to mind was West Coast by Lana Del Rey. I am going to stick with that, otherwise I could be stuck on this question for days.

If you weren’t doing what you’re doing, what would you be doing?
I think I would be working at a dog shelter or a doggy day care center. I am obsessed with dogs, it’s on another level!

Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is that important to you?
(How do I keep introducing the next answer with the previous one?) I love to support dog shelters.

iPhone, BlackBerry, Android or Other?
iPhone forever! 

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