Every December for the past few years, we have had all the 3Pointers write out their highlights from the year that was. We often write about all of the change the company has undergone in the past year — while we don’t want to fall back on old cliches, 2019 may well have seen the most change of any year since our founding. We’re ending 2019 with 10 full-time 3Pointers — six of whom were not at the company a year ago. And aside from headcount, we’ve once again grown in the clients we service and the services we offer.

That said, we do want to make this year’s edition of this blog a little different. So in honor of our own Katie O’Shea recently explaining the “OK Boomer” meme on Chicago Tonight, we’ve asked each 3Pointer to also create a meme that encapsulates their highlight. Read on to see what they chose!

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My favorite part of 2019 was being welcomed into the 3Points family (and Chicago!) in June. I came in with two years of business development experience and some marketing internship experience, and I was eager to step into the PR field — a field in which I have always wanted to work — and apply my transferable skills. I thought that working with fintech clients would be an exciting added challenge.

Immediately upon arriving at 3Points, Drew introduced me to my accounts and told me that I would be leading our crypto account, CMT Digital. He proceeded to tell me that 3Points wanted me to be its “crypto girl,” managing relationships with crypto clients and crypto media, and representing the firm within the crypto community. This was a challenge that I never expected, but I decided to accept it. Fast forward six months, and I have attended crypto meetups and conferences in Chicago, cultivated relationships with crypto media, interacted with crypto Twitter, and consumed countless articles, podcasts, and pieces of content about crypto (including the famous Satoshi Whitepaper). I’m very proud of the work that I’ve done as the account lead for CMT Digital and as our “crypto girl,” which go hand-in-hand. I’m excited to see what’s next for me in 2020!

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2019 was a year of growth in many ways for me, ordered around a couple big life events: graduating college and starting my career. Professional growth came quickly; one of the things I’ve appreciated most about my time here so far at 3Points is how much responsibility I was given from the get-go. While it led to some initial anxieties (see below meme), it propelled me to move forward and gain experiences I wouldn’t have gotten — or at least wouldn’t have gotten yet — elsewhere. So I think my highlights of the year, at least professionally, were moments that marked this growth: taking over the account of my first client, Hehmeyer; taking my first work trip to the Big Apple; and leading my second client, a soon-to-launch equities exchange, through an important media moment in their growth.

I also have to mention some of the fun we’ve had here at 3Points as outstanding memories from this year. From fun and unique team outings (my first tour of a brewery!) to awesome holiday parties, we knew how to balance work and fun.

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Me evaluating myself after running an update call

Part of the fun of coming onboard at 3Points stems from the opportunity to meet up and network with people and businesses from industry segments outside the scope of my prior work in the listed derivatives space. (And, as luck would have it, I still get the opportunity to operate in those trading circles, given our fintech clientele. 🙏)

It was in that new context that I was tickled to see the dress code for one particular event described as “startup chic.” Something about that, of all the novel turns of phrase I’ve caught since joining 3Points, felt most indicative of my big, broad highlight of 2019: all this new stuff. I’ve learned about trends in food delivery, venture capital raises, regulations in private securities markets, and tech challenges facing legal cannabis — not to mention learning about my new teammates as well.

It’s been a whirlwind Q4, but I look forward to more of the “Pooh” meme, and less of the “Discovering the Internet” meme, in 2020.

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My biggest highlight of 2019 was joining the 3Points team. From the end of my first interview, I knew that 3Points was going to be a place where I was going to learn a lot — that’s the reason I decided to join the team. 3Points has been so helpful in growing my professional skill set. The team has fostered an environment of learning and always encouraged me to be creative and take charge of projects, which is not something you see every day when it comes to being an intern at a company.

My biggest accomplishment during my time here was taking the lead on T4Youth’s social media. Being so involved in the event had a great impact on me — I even wrote a blog post about it! While building a social media campaign and assisting in the execution of the event was a lot of work, it turned out to be a successful night that, most importantly, helped raise money for the students at Chicago Tech Academy.

My role here at 3Points was quite dynamic. Each day brought on new challenges, from running our social media accounts to working on some of our Chicago tech clients. As my time here as an intern is coming to an end, I am grateful to end 2019 on a high note and am looking forward to all the professional opportunities that await in 2020.

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To the tune of my fellow 3Pointers, this year has been defined by change for me as well. Last winter, I rang in the new year with one of the biggest changes of all — packing up my bags and moving to Chicago, hundreds of miles away from the state I grew up in. Throughout all this change there have been so many milestones, lessons learned, and successes, but in 3Points fashion, I will keep it to my top three.

The first highlight of 2019 was when I was offered a full-time position at 3Points just three weeks into my internship — that set the bar pretty high as far as highlights go. Since officially becoming a 3Pointer in February, I have built lasting friendships with my colleagues, strengthened my relationships with our clients, and become acquainted with Chicago’s tech community.

The second highlight was diving into the aforementioned Chicago startup and entrepreneurial ecosystem. I have met so many brilliant and unique people — from our clients to those within the Chicago tech community at large — and I have felt such powerful energy from this group. It has been inspiring to see all of the innovative companies that are born in this city and it has been even more rewarding to actually get to work with these companies and individuals.

The third highlight has been working with my fellow colleagues to grow 3Points’ Chicago tech practice. Upon diving into Chicago’s startup community, I immediately knew I wanted to help my company continue to grow this practice. I get to come to work every day and be surrounded by smart, motivated people who are so dedicated to the people we serve at 3Points. Each one of my colleagues brings a sharpened set of skills, and I always know I have someone to lean on when I have a question or could use some advice. There is no better group of people I would want to take on 2020 with!

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My favorite part of 2019 was joining the AWESOME 3Points team in June. I came in with about three years of public relations experience from all different industries, which gave me a unique perspective. I was both excited and nervous to jump into the complicated world of fintech. However, soon after, I realized I could take some of the PR tricks I learned over the years and use them to help our clients at 3Points.

In September, I was able to land the first placement in Fast Company for a 3Points client. Our client Imagineer Technology Group was featured in the article “3 Times When Procrastination can be a Good Thing.” There truly is no better feeling when working in the PR field than landing a placement in a national, top-tier publication, like Fast Company, for a client.

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One of my favorite moments in 2019 was our all-company outing to Metropolitan Brewing, a craft brewery in Avondale. [You may remember them from our blog about the Chicago beer and tech industries.] Not only was it fun to tour and sip craft beer, but it was the first time the new 3Points team (in our current iteration) spent quality time together outside of the office. If you’ve never been to Metropolitan, the brewery has a scenic outdoor deck that sits along the Chicago River, and during that team outing, you could feel the unity and camaraderie building among the team.

In June, we brought on three new account reps: Chris, Delilah, and Nicole, and in September, Spencer joined the content team. (Our design intern Jeffrey also became a full-time 3Pointer this summer.) With five new full-time hires and two interns, our team more than doubled in size from the beginning of the year. 3Points is now the biggest we’ve ever been and it’s been exciting to build out my fintech practice with young and hungry talent. I’ve been learning so much from them, and they have made me reassess my processes and have helped create an even stronger structure at 3Points. I’m looking forward to seeing what we accomplish — and where we go for our next team outings — in 2020.

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For me, one of the big highlights of the year has been getting more involved in the Chicago tech scene. 3Points has represented Chicago tech clients for a few years now, and of course we have been involved with T4Youth since co-founding the event in 2014. This year, however, seemed to be a turning point, where it’s not just us telling people we cover Chicago tech — the Chicago tech world is coming to us. This year was my first year serving on the board of TechForward, the philanthropic arm of the Illinois Technology Association. I was invited to speak at 1871 and at the FUND Chicago Conference. And most importantly, 3Points continued to expand our Chicago Tech expertise, helping clients in industries ranging from cannabis tech to restaurant tech to healthcare tech. I’m looking forward to continuing to grow our local tech presence in the new year.

In all honesty, I am humbled by the fact that the Chicago Tech community has embraced 3Points

There have been a lot of great milestones for 3Points this past year, due in large part to the cultivation of a team with an even greater range of abilities than we had one year ago. Getting to work with Maddie to start putting the development of 3Points’ Chicago tech practice into high gear has been awesome — I know that our Chicago tech team will only gain momentum in 2020.

As for other 2019 highlights, I have to mention the two instances that made me consider whether I should invest in a cable television package: being on Jeopardy! and on WTTW’s Chicago Tonight. I never could have guessed that 2019 would mean having to think deeply and more than once about which clothing patterns appear best on camera, but here we are. It was truly thrilling to get to represent both 3Points and myself on such widely viewed platforms.

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When I look back at my experiences this year at 3Points, I think my biggest accomplishment was the creation and launch of our new website. When I was first brought in as a design intern, 3Points was on the cusp of a rebrand. When I asked if a new website or a website overhaul would be part of these efforts, I was shocked to hear that the team saw this as a projected goal for the start of the new year. It was April, and I knew that if I put my head down, collaborated with every team member, and worked my tail off, I could produce a new website for 3Points to launch in conjunction with our rebrand.

Although the team was flexible and pushed the date back a little bit to work with me, we were able to put up the new site in late May, to go along with our new logo and brand image. It was a great feeling to know that I was able to make a meaningful contribution to the team as an intern in my first two months as a 3Pointer, and that was easily my biggest highlight of 2019.

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One of the biggest highlights for me this year was assembling our new team. And particularly for me, it was exciting for me to see our content team grow to its strongest-ever iteration. What started half a decade ago as just me writing blog posts and website copy for clients has grown into a four-strong team of complementary skill sets. While Katie has been our official proofreader for a few years now, this year we also added Spencer’s fintech/journalism expertise, as well as Jeffrey’s design chops to make sure our content looks as good as it reads. It was also another year of expanding our video and photography efforts, with a few different client videos and a number of client headshots. Heading into 2020, I can’t wait to see what we can do with a full year of this content team in action.

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Written by

PR & Communications for Fintech & Chicago Tech. www.3ptscomm.com

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