Alumni Spotlight: Jenna Grable’11 – Working in Sports and Technology

Alumni Spotlight: Jenna Grable’11 – Working in Sports and Technology

Jenna Grable presents to students about her experience in the sports and technology industries. Image by: Marquel Plavan

There are lots of rumors out there that companies within the tech industry are great places to work. But is that really true? It is according to Jenna Grable, BA ’11, an Elite Account Executive at Yelp in San Francisco. Grable spoke to students recently about her experience in both the tech and sports marketing fields.

After graduating from UD in 2014, Grable left Dallas for San Francisco to try something new. “I contacted recruiters from different job sites and set up interviews during a two week visit, which stretched to three weeks,” she said. She soon received an offer from LoopNet, a real estate company, and relocated to San Francisco.

After some time with LoopNet, Grable decided that she would indulge her real passion, baseball, and took a job with the Omaha Storm Chasers, the KC Royals’ AAA club and the Richmond Flying Squirrels, the Giants’ AA club. “You have to know what you’re getting into with sports marketing,” she said. “I love baseball and I loved being around the game every day. But it’s long hours and a lot of work with not so much pay.”

So although she loved the baseball life, Grable realized that her future lay in the tech industry back in San Francisco.

Grable began working for Yelp two and a half years ago and recently achieved the company’s President’s Club award for outstanding sales. She attributes her success to Yelp’s culture. “We have an excellent, 60-day training program known throughout the industry,” she said. “And we’re constantly learning new things through ongoing professional development.” Grable said the team atmosphere at Yelp is such that they cheer everyone’s successes. “If you work hard, you get to play hard,” she said. Grable added that company-paid health insurance and even free food are a few of the many benefits that make Yelp a great company to work for.

Grable, a theology and business double-major, advised students that most tech companies will hire sales people regardless of their majors or backgrounds, as long as they meet some simple criteria. “Most companies want sales people who are competitive, persistent, coachable and, in the case of Yelp, passionate about small business,” she said.

Grable added that although some graduates might think they don’t like sales, it’s worth taking a sales job to get in the door of a tech firm. “There are so many tech start-ups” she said. “And the easiest way to get in is through the sales door. Once you get your first job, you can demonstrate that you are coachable. That shows your own and future employers your potential.”

Grable encouraged anyone interested in working for Yelp or in the sports marketing field to contact her through LinkedIn.

Interested in learning more? Stop by the Career Development Office in downstairs Augustine Hall to make an appointment with one of our advisors who can lend you the advice you need to help with all steps of the job search! Or shoot us an email at career@udallas.edu

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