How my birthday lead to a new job and jumping out of a plane…By Sarah Bowden

At RedBalloon we love to do things just a little bit different. Here is the story of how we found our new Marketing Manager and got her “RedBalloon-afied” soon after starting.

“So when you’re about to turn 30 and everyone tells you that you’re a really hard person to buy for and is there anything that you’d like to ‘wish’ for … what do you say?

Seeking present inspiration online, I came across the RedBalloon website and began browsing a whole lot of experiences.

Given my boyfriend and I celebrate our birthdays a few weeks apart, we decided to give each other an experience gift and something we could both do together. Since his birthday was first that meant I got to choose ‘our’ present to each other. Isn’t that how it always works?

While searching the RedBalloon site, and the RedBalloon Facebook page, I noticed they were looking for a Marketing Manager. This job ad sounded almost too good to be true and after watching the video on the website I was ready to drop everything and apply. So the next morning I’ve submitted my application and before I know it I’m ask to come in and wow the CEO and Employee Experience Manager. I continued to progress through the process after a presentation and a ‘meet and greet’ where I tried to impress my possible future team. By the way – is it normal to have a dog wander past as you as you’re trying to make a great first impression with the founder of the business – at RedBalloon it surely is!

I was just a little excited to accept the role of Marketing Manager a few days later and join the incredibly talented and entertaining crew at RedBalloon.

And after 2 weeks in my shiny new role, it was my birthday – which at RB entitles you to a day off – hurrah!

So not sure what you got up to this weekend, but I celebrated my birthday with a long weekend and went jet-boating on Sydney Harbour, climbed the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and ate a lot of strawberry tarts. And when you turn 30, why not jump out of plane to celebrate as well. We’ll that’s what I decided to do. It didn’t take much convincing to get my boyfriend to join me too.

Yes, the day after my 30th, we were heading to down to Wollongong to go skydiving.

The team were so enthusiastic and welcoming and before we knew it we were suited up in our safety gear and on the bus to the airport. Not long after we were on the plane gaining altitude. I remember asking my instructor how high are we at the moment? – he advised 2,000 feet, and then I remembered we were going to 14,000 feet!!!

Minutes later it was time to put on the goggles and the door was open, and within seconds we were freefalling. What an incredible and surreal feeling, I loved it, but do remember thinking what I am I doing!!

It was such a beautiful clear May day and I could see to the city and down to Jervis Bay. Before I knew it the parachute kicked in, and it was time to soak it all in. I got to steer the parachute for a while and then time to hand back the reins and glide in for the landing.

I’d thoroughly recommend this experience to everyone. It’s a birthday I’ll never forget!!!

And definitely get the DVD, it all goes so quickly it’s great to relive it and share with family and friends afterwards and laugh at yourself.

But don’t ask me what I’m up to this weekend, because it’s never going to be as awesome as this one was.

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