Occupation: Sr. Manager of Sales
Major at GC: Business Management with Minor in Marketing
Why did you choose Georgia College?
I chose Georgia College because I was looking for a place that I could thrive. A smaller student body and campus helped solidify my choice when I compared GC to other larger institutions. I also learned very early on that I could become more involved on campus. I wanted to go somewhere where I wasn’t just a number in a crowd or in a class. Being involved in a community, as well as opportunities for experiential learning opportunities made me look at GC as a key element to my future success.
Did you have a favorite professor or class?
Professional Selling class with Dr. Poddar was an all-time favorite. Unfortunately, he’s no longer at the University but the way the College of Business has grown and evolved even in the brief time since my graduation is awesome to watch. The professional selling class got me into the career I have today, and he really pushed us to do more and do better. It was a hands-on class where we learned a lot about business and marketing at-large.
What is your favorite Georgia College memory?
One of my favorite memories at Georgia College was when I won the election for Student Government President… the first time. It was a neat experience to be recognized by my peers in that way. No doubt it was a hard-fought long campaign, but it was a neat experience to be a part of. I’ll also say that while SGA was a highlight of my college career, meeting my wife, Elizabeth (’11), in finance class likely took the cake.
What got you interested about you career at Cox Media Group?
In my professional selling class, a few of us were selected to participate in a national sales competition. As a junior I was one of the student’s selected to compete for GC and made it to the second round. During that competition there was a career fair where businesses were making job offers on the spot to the competitors. It’s there I met the folks at Cox Media Group, I loved their approach to doing business and reputation in the marketplace. Their approach to advertising is very much an agency style. Its solution-based and all about creating the right campaigns for advertisers to engage their customers. I was a Junior so I didn’t get an offer on the spot but stayed in touch and that competition later led me to start my career at CMG.
What is the best part about your career?
I've been with Cox Media Group nearly seven years since graduation. It was my first job when I graduated and have been promoted several times within the organization. What’s neat about CMG is that each time we had a conversation about my next career move it was always a focus on my strengths and long-term development and how that matched with the business needs. CMG’s commitment to their employees is top notch and one that makes it a great place to work. When you match that with doing something you love and are passionate about – helping people succeed – it’s a dream job. Weather its helping create an advertising campaign and changing a business’s trajectory or helping someone on my team solve that problem they have been working on, helping people is what’s best.
What are you currently doing at Cox?
I started as a sales associate with our Atlanta radio sales team which at the time was a step above an intern and designed to launch my career. I was doing everything but getting the mail but absolutely loved it. After a few months in that program I then became a Media Consultant and worked in business development for a brief time. I found that I had a passion for digital advertising and marketing and joined our digital advertising arm, Local Solutions, as a Digital Media Specialist in that same Atlanta office and later ran that team as the Digital Sales Manager. In my role today, I lead our innovation sales efforts across CMG. My team and I work with our company’s best and brightest in over 20 satellite offices/media properties across the country and lead those sales teams to success by aligning our innovation products to their client’s marketing strategy. It’s very much a startup embedded within Cox Media Group. In our space we operate standalone websites and media properties that reach niche audiences at scale. For example, if you’re a college football fan, you may have heard of some our sites that are a part of the DieHards network - DawgNation.com, SECcountry.com, Landof10.com or DieHards.com. The DieHards network is our preeminent college football network of sites and is the largest college football site in the country.
What awards have you won?
A few years ago, while working with our Atlanta radio cluster, I won the Radio Wayne Digital Sales Specialist of the Year. The Radio Wayne awards recognize excellence in sales, management and marketing in the radio industry and was a huge accomplishment for me personally since there is one selected nationally every year and I won being just a few years in the industry.
How has your education at Georgia College helped you become who you are today?
I wholeheartedly believe that without the liberal arts education, extra-curricular activities or experiential learning that I had while at Georgia College, I would not have been afforded the opportunity to join such a prestigious company in Atlanta nor had the success in my career this far. I credit that to the liberal arts style of GC that pushed me to question the status quo. My professors, advisors, and university leadership made me to think outside the box and challenge my critical thinking. That critical thinking has helped me look at the word through a new lens and given me a perspective in which to succeed not only in business but in life as well. Tangibly, it has helped me win at work, leading teams and being a thought leader in our space. At home, GC helped me become a better citizen making giving and servant leadership to my family, friends, and community a part of who I am. I am who I am because of what I learned at GC and wouldn’t change a moment of my four years there.
What advice would you give to students seeking a career right now?
Get involved outside of your classes and find other areas on campus to learn. Make the most of the community that you're a part of here at Georgia College. The learnings you get here, in a safe and forgiving environment, easily transfer to the “working world”. That campus involvement helps give you credible experiences that you can parlay into business application and make you stand out in an interview. Be a leader and show that you have not only the grit and determination to get the job done but with your liberal arts education, you have a unique perspective to help that business win.
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