I am obsessed with baseball.* Anyone who knows me can vouch for this. Unfortunately, I blew out my arm throwing when I was 18, which made playing the sport impossible. So I started watching and following professional games. Soon after, my love for our national pastime merged with my love of numbers. I started developing advanced algorithms for my college team. I still do this for fun today — mainly for the Cubs.
While I have not gotten the Cubs to use any of my ideas, they did just finally win the World Series. I’d like to think it would have been sooner with my input. (Theo, call me.)
During college, my best friend showed me Google Analytics. At the time, he was the lead digital marketer at a large SaaS company that focused on real estate rentals. My friend showed how he was able to use live data to inform and update his team’s marketing initiatives in real time. “This is where I spend most of my time,” he said. I was blown away.
With my love for numbers, passion for real-time stats, and interest in marketing, I had found a new path — digital marketing.
As my career progressed from individual contributor to marketing director at an agency, I knew I wanted to do more in the space. I realized that I wanted others to experience that “wow” moment I had in college. I wanted to share my passion for digital marketing with others. I was fortunate to have the opportunity to speak at industry conferences and even taught a few college courses.
While at the agency, I was approached by a former colleague about a new opportunity. I moved over to one of the IBM Cloud properties to lead and build the digital marketing team as it grew from a national to a global presence. It was exciting to work with a globally distributed team. Of course, this brought new challenges too. For example, getting feedback on marketing program effectiveness… in 17 different languages.
I loved working remotely. However, it was one profound moment while I was stopped at an intersection in my car that made me think twice about my career direction.
While the car was idling, one thought entered my head, “I need to go somewhere where I can have the most impact versus where I am currently at.” I was managing a global team and had a comfortable senior-level title. But I wanted more. I was ready to channel my passion for digital marketing into a high-growth company where I could do significant work.
My interviews with Aha! were a surprise. Through my career and own personal experience, I was often told by candidates that no one interviewed as rigorously as I did. The idea was always to make sure that the company was a good fit and the person would enjoy working with the team. That is why the approach at Aha! really resonated for me — you get to meet with not only the hiring manager but the CEO, Brian de Haaff, and the extended team.
You get an idea of the people you will be working with, along with how the company runs from the top down. It was a breath of fresh air.
The data-driven decision making and The Responsive Method appealed to me as well. In the past, I was always working with or for huge companies where it took forever to get a reply back — let alone decisions made in a timely manner. My teammates at Aha! answer my questions almost as quickly as I ask them.
A speedy, goal-first culture at a company full of top talent where I could make a tremendous impact? Aha! was exactly what I was looking for.
That is why I joined Aha! — and why you should too.
*One of my goals is to visit all of the U.S. ballparks. This is why my photo here shows me at Fenway Park — sitting right where the ball from the longest home run ever hit at this park landed.