New addition for the Hamburg-based ORCAs: By beginning of the new year, Frederike Buddensiek has started her traineeship at ORCA van Loon Communications. Prior to that, Frederike has been studying political and communication science at Technical University Dresden as well as strategic communications and public relations in Scotch Edinburgh. Amongst others, she gained practical experience at Grayling, ressourcenmangel and Sächsische Zeitung.

During her 12-month traineeship, Frederike will get to know several different facetes and fields of strategic corporate communications. Actively and "on the job" she gets to know content creaction, research and evaluation as well as strategy development. Next to that, she also gets introduced to first client advisory.

Onboarding through a personal "Guiding Whale"

During this process, Michelle März will always stand by her side as Frederike's "Guiding Whale". What might sound like a pun of words with Orcas, is in fact an integral part of the structured onboarding process at ORCA van Loon Communications: the "Guiding Whale" or mentoring programme helps new collegues with with settling down fast and well. It focuses on trustful contact, advise by a neutral person as well as professional and personal development.

In fact, this is an interesting experience for Michelle, too: "I started working at ORCA van Loon Communications not before April 2019 and got to know everything through the eyes of a "rookie". When I was asked in December to become a guiding whale myself, I felt honoured and was looking forward to the change of perspective."

ORCA van Loon Communications' mentoring process is based on strong integration and a long-term focus. Therefore, new colleagues are integrated into the team as well as processes and ways of working right at the first day as seamlessly as possible. Thus, Frederike as well as Michelle before her, saw a fully-equipped workplace, their personal edition of the quality handbook and an extensive welcome kit.

The latter includes all information necessary for a quick start at OvL: a short comprehension of philosophy, values and fields of competence of ORCA van Loon Communications, short CV's of the entire team, an overview of current clients as well as tips and tricks for daily work – including best advise for lunch.

Plunging into ORCA Diving Lab

What will further happen to Frederike in the course of the year? For example, theORCA Diving Lab" in which she will dig even deeper into the world of strategic communications. This training programme consist of four pillars: during monthly ORCA Inspires, colleagues hold impulse keynotes for the entire team – for open discussion and the potential integration of new topics into advisory. Next to that, the ORCA Academy offers regular all-day trainings with internal and external partners.

To be up-to-date at all times, regularly visiting conferences is obligatory for the entire team. To ensure this, the ORCA Conference pillar comes with a fixed budget for every employee. Within ORCA Exchange, it is up and foremost up to new colleagues to get to know a partner company from the ORCA Group. New Orcas are able to enhance their network rather quick this way and get new insights into further communication disciplines such as advertisement of Public Affairs.

Frederike remembers: "The training programme has been a decisive factor for my decision to start at ORCA van Loon. Right from the beginning I had the feeling to be promoted ideally and to be able to enhance my professional knowledge."

Further information about what it means to be or become an ORCA, can be found here.


Frederike Buddensiek (right) with her personal "Guiding Whale" Michelle März (left)

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