As a first-year student finishing her first marketing course, I loved seeing how industry leaders and diverse voices have used their MBA to propel their careers at events hosted by the Kilts Center for Marketing.
Keynote speakers Nina Barton, CGO, Kraft Heinz, and Kenny Mitchell, CMO, Snap Inc., truly embody what it means to have a consumer-centric vision. Coming from a retail background, I’ve always heard the phrases “The customer is always right.” and “Put the customer first.” However, after attending two events where Nina and Kenny shared their career journeys and examples of leading and marketing through uncertainty, I was able to take away tangible learnings to supplement my first quarter of classes.
Lead with a Disruptive Spirit
Acknowledging the current state of the world, and the burgeoning number of innovators rushing to solve novel consumer problems, Nina Barton chose to disrupt her own business with SupperUp before anyone else could. For a, at times, risk-averse person like myself, it’s encouraging to see an industry giant unafraid to shake up their own business, try new things, and do better for the consumer. This is a valuable learning moment I’ll take into my internship experience.
Find Your Center of Gravity
Marketing has given Kenny Mitchell a breadth of experiences, from CPG to NASCAR, and to the CMO of Snap Inc. Initially thinking he was motivated by his passion for sports, Kenny realized he is driven to organizations with a strong base of passionate consumers. This is his center of gravity; similar to every one of us, every business has a center of gravity that drives organization. Leveraging his past learnings and passion for the consumer, Kenny was able to connect with the unique Snapchat community to raise money for medical supplies, navigate towards the truth, and register over 1.2 million people to vote directly through Snapchat. From this event, I learned the importance of identifying my center of gravity, and the powerful results that can come from working in alignment with my center of gravity. I am admittedly still synthesizing my driving force, but I hope to one day hone my skills to produce realizable change, like Kenny and Nina have done, in a socially conscious organization.
Looking ahead to my marketing internship and full-time role, I aim to lead with a disruptive spirit guided by my center of gravity, and I encourage others, in any field, to do the same.