In less than a decade, Jordan Pierson (BUS '08) has gone from studying business at DePaul University to being chosen by Forbes magazine as one of its "30 under 30" young movers and shakers in the marketing industry.
Pierson heads product marketing for online acquisitions at Google, where she has won two Google Marketing Platinum Awards and one Gold Marketing Award for her work.
Prior to joining Google, she was manager of e-commerce at Hilton Worldwide and account manager at Publicis Groupe, the multinational advertising and public relations company. Below we ask Pierson to reflect on how her DePaul education set her on her career path.
How did DePaul help prepare you for your career?
DePaul provided a real-world education that has been highly influential to my career. I found these specific programs most valuable:
- Joining the cutting-edge eBusiness major (now called the management information systems major). I was in one of the first graduating classes from the program in 2008 and had a significant leg up from other applicants to my top job leads.
- Emphasis on internships. I received a few job offers upon graduating from DePaul due to the breadth of experience I already had as a recent graduate.
- Participation in the International Business Seminar. Traveling to Paris was not only a character building experience, but it also got me excited about global markets. I now work and travel to all global regions annually with Google.
- Competing in the Google Online Marketing Challenge. My internet technologies in business course was my first foray into digital marketing and got me really excited about search engine optimization and search engine marketing. It got my foot in the door at my first post-college job at Starcom Worldwide, and ultimately it gave me a leg up in my Google interviews.
Tell us more about your internship and how it helped you in your career.
I interned at the Executives' Club of Chicago as an information technology coordinator my junior year. It taught me that perseverance makes anything possible, as being a full-time student and an almost full-time intern took a lot of dedication and time away from my social life.
What's your advice for current DePaul business students who aspire to make a future "30 Under 30" list?
Stay restless and keep learning. When I get too comfortable that usually means I've plateaued in what I'm learning and am no longer pushing myself.
Set a personal development plan and mark milestones needed to land your dream job, learning along the way.
Find a mentor that you respect. If you build a strong relationship, they'll help champion you along the way.
Don't be afraid of failure. At Google, we live by the saying "fail big, fail fast," as some of our most successful projects have come out of moonshot side projects (e.g., Gmail). It influences a culture of risk taking. I've had many failures in my career, but they were the solid foundation on which I built my success. Perspective is everything, and if you learn from a failure, it turns into something positive.
What do you do outside of work?
I'm fortunate to be able to do a lot of global travel for work, so I typically tack on a few visits to broaden my perspective. Most recently, I went to Nepal with Google for a post-earthquake relief project. It was an incredibly enlightening experience that I will never forget. When we found spare time, we hiked the Himalayas and mingled with the end recipients of the relief work. It was truly a life-changing experience.
Learn more about business majors at DePaul.