Some jobs are on the nose! But you have to start somewhere.

Daphne Kapetas founder of LAJOIE SKIN and anti-chafing cream Calmmé

Did I mention that I did not always work in the glamorous world of cosmetics and fragrance development? A Science Degree alone, did not fast track me into my dream job. My first job was more like a nightmare, but I had to start somewhere!

My very first job, after completing my degree at the University of Technology, Sydney was working for an Environmental waste company. Yes, waste! To be more specific, I spent six months analysing the chemical content of Portaloo waste. Waste, from those temporary toilets that famously find their place at festivals, sporting events and construction sites. Not glamorous at all! In fact, a job that was definitely on the nose. It doesn’t matter how hard I tried washing the various pungent odour from my skin and clothes … my mother could still smell it!

Just as the pungent odours faded (yes they eventually did) so did my vivid memories about this smelly chapter in my work life. I successfully erased it from my memory. Those grey track pants and steel capped safety boots that I used to rock were long forgotten, up and until the time that my friend Nicole, was trying hard to crack a job into journalism. I reflected on how lucky I was to have such an amazing career… but it didn’t start that way!

The six months working for this company, coupled with my sheer determination, gave me just the right skills and experience to help get me a job at Avon Products, as a Cosmetic Chemist. I was sky rocketed into an industry that I loved with a passion ever since I was in Primary School.

It is not easy landing your dream job, and rejection, upon rejection, can be disheartening. But if you are hungry enough for that dream career and disciplined enough to make the effort, persistence eventually pays off.

BTW two years on  from completing her degree, including five internships, numerous contract roles, attendances at a countless number of networking and pop culture events, Nicole eventually landed her dream job. Nicole’s dream career in journalism was launched at Fairfax media! Nicole’s sheer determination and drive, was finally rewarded.


Celebrating the successful launch of her new career with a dream job. A young beautiful woman dressed in a mauve evening dress.

Nicole Economos

Handling job rejection and failure

Let’s face it, nobody likes to fail and especially nobody likes rejection.  However, failure and rejection, can lead to new and dynamic opportunities.  Doors can open to opportunties that you may not have even thought of yourself.

Job rejection. Opportunities through failure. A vintage door handle found on the island of Patmos Greece

Richard Branson – Virgin Group Founder and Chairman:-

“Never look back in regret — move on to the next thing.”


Failure and rejection provides the opportunity to grow through learning from past mistakes. Learning through failure can build strength of character, resistance and perseverance.



Warren Buffet, as at February 2017 is the second wealthiest person in the world. He told a curious 7th grader, that the key to making friends and getting along with co-workers is learning to change your behavior as you mature by emulating those you admire and adopting the qualities they possess.

Resistance and perseverance will eventually lead to success


Imperfection can lead to dream jobs. An imperfect light bulb found in the town of Platamonas in Greece.

Landing your dream job

How do you land a dream job? It all begins with your confidence and especially with your own self- talk. Catch the negative chatter and convert the unhelpful thoughts into positives. Marketing is not just about products and services. Target marketing principles can be used when searching and eventually landing your dream job.

The most valuable product that you have to market to a future employer is YOU.  Pick a specific target, being your future employer and them market yourself to them.

Target Marketing YOU as a the product 

It was a Wednesday afternoon, laying in bed with sharp pains in my neck, thanks to a C6 – C7 disk displacement. I was studying my Master of Business in Marketing part-time and not happy with my job. I reflected:

  • Where could I best apply my skills?

  • Which company would be best suited to my core values?

  • What company could fulfill my needs and wants?

  • How could I help this employer achieve their goals?

These questions needed to be answered and so I picked up the phone, even though it was after work hours, and I called ROCHE  Upon answering a few questions from the “gatekeeper,” I was put through to someone that would help answer my questions. The man at the end of the phone, did not introduce himself and he started by asking me if I wanted I job. I boldly replied,

“NO! I am doing a strategic 5 year plan for my career and wanted to determine whether ROCHE and I have a good cultural fit!”

This man kindly proceeded to answer all my questions and more. At the end of our conversation I asked him what his name and position was. To my surprise, he was the CEO ROCHE Asia Pacific. The ‘gatekeeper’, maybe due to it being after hours, (I will never know), had put me through to the CEO.

My dream career …

Eventually I landed myself, my DREAM CAREER, working for Givaudan, a division of ROCHE at that time.

I specifically targeted this company and had done my homework.  Therefore, I knew exactly what they needed, where there were gaps and opportunities and how I could help them. My approach was focused and equipped with a solid knowledge of who both they and I were.

Doing this type of research in order to gain a clear understanding of who you are and what you can do, takes a lot of time and effort. Target marketing YOU as a product, to a future employer is strategic. A scatter-gun approach to job search is a numbers game and waiting in a queue via www.seek.com with a generic CV and cover-letter is highly competitive and is most likely going to keep you stuck in a rut.

Approaching a company directly in order to ‘market yourself’, takes confidence, drive and discipline and therefore a lot less competition.

In order to land your dream career you need to start somewhere. As you gain experience, begin writing down your:

  1. Skills

  2. Experiences

  3. Achievements

When you have gained enough skills, experience, have an impressive list of achievements and you start feeling less than fulfilled, begin researching your next move. Don’t wait until you are totally disillusioned, as this will make you appear desperate.

I began my career nearly gagging from the worst of olfactory experiences and then ended up surrounded by the very best of scents with the number one fragrance house internationally.


Some jobs are on the nose, but remember …you have to start somewhere.



The nose knows,

Daphne K Knows

Founder of LAJOIE SKIN

and the anti-chafe cream, Calmmé.

Calmme antichafing cream

Calmmé antichafing cream

Catch up with me on facebooktwitter, instagram,

Photography Credit: Zara King Photography




2 replies
    • Daphne
      Daphne says:

      Thank you. We only have one life. So I say,”Feel the fear and then do it anyway.” As long as you are not hurting anyone in the process and your choices are not harmful to you or breaking the law – then, go for it!


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