Career Tips from Adweek Executive Mentees – Part 1

Be curious, read everything, and diversify your experience. These gems are amongst the top pieces of advice our current Mentee class, composed of senior-level marketers, have received throughout their careers. Whether you just graduated college or starting out in Marketing and Advertising, read on to find out what this year’s group say was critical in their climb upwards.

We’ll be back with more soon – our 270+ mentees from Round 2 of the Adweek Executive Mentor Program have a lot to say!

 1. Be curious.

“Be curious, be prepared, measure impact on the business and most of all don’t forget to ask questions. The more you ask and the more people you’re able to talk to the more you’ll be able to pick up knowledge quickly and grow your career.” Martijn Scheybeler, vp marketing, RVshare

“Raise your hand often and say yes to everything. Sit in on that brainstorm, ask to work on that new business pitch, offer to help on another account. Get as much exposure as you can early on.” Philip Pirkovic, creative strategist, Google

“Come to the table with ideas and solutions – not just problems and issues. Get to understand the business of your clients and put yourself in their shoes – often (if you are agency side). Ask questions. Then ask more questions. Be curious.” Charlene Coughlin, managing director, TWIST Creative, Inc.

“The journey as a marketer is a marathon not a sprint.  The consumer journey will evolve and so must your approach to reaching them.  Get to intimately know the consumers you are marketing to very early, this will guide your decision making and the value that you bring your organization.  Stay connected and curious about how consumers are engaging with brands. Take your time and learn as much as you can.” Jamie Wideman, vp of marketing, Terlato

“Ask questions and be curious. It’s ok to not know something!” Annie Jean-Baptiste, head of product inclusion, Google

2. Express the right attitude.

“The one thing that’s in your control from day one is your attitude.  Your outlook and can-try approach will quickly leave a positive impression and earn you respect.  It’s the easiest aspect, but often times overlooked because people are busy trying to prove what they know.” Jared Melzer, director of global marketing and partnerships, TE Connectivity

“Make yourself visible and valuable: Visible to your bosses or hiring manager by creating personal 1:1 connection with a balanced give and take. Valuable to your team by being proactive, solutions-oriented, and always operating at 110%.” Ashley Buxton, group director of communications design, Initiative

“Don’t forget the critical importance of building your own personal brand. I attribute a large part of majority of my success to tracking toward my own value pillars: attention to detail, hard work, integrity and transparency. When you put the majority of your energy in focusing on your core values (which in turn comprise your personal brand), the rest will pay dividends.” Kenna Ranson, director, account services digital, WarnerMedia

“Be resourceful, and make yourself a resource. Often when we’re gaining knowledge it’s tempting to ask others where to find answers that we need and forget that they are likely accessible to us. Rather than creating what can possibly be viewed as a project for others, try your best to put together the best answer, and then ask for feedback. In making yourself a resource, be proactive in compiling helpful information and share that with your colleagues/clients/customers, etc. There’s no better way to build community!” Kelly Byrd, director of customer success & insights, Onclusive

3. Learn as much as possible.

“Be a sponge for knowledge. Read and learn as much as possible about the industry and the different functions available. Build a network of peers and mentors that will give you insights and advice as you progress through your career.” Alin Dobrea, head of marketing solutions and partnerships, Zalora

Luz Corona is the community content manager at Adweek, curating trends, tips and advice from top brand leaders to help marketers grow.