Career Advice From the 4 Under 40 Award Winners

American Marketing Association
Marketing News Weekly
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High-achieving marketers offer their best advice for those just starting out.

​Oct. 31, 2016

The AMA Emerging Leaders Award honors individuals who have already made significant contributions to the field of marketing and its sub-fields, and have demonstrated leadership and continuing service. The program is highly selective, with 4 individuals selected annually.

The 2016 4 Under 40 were asked to answer the question: “What is one piece of advice you would give to someone starting out in the industry?”

Brad Messinger

"Be versatile. The industry is evolving at a pace like we’ve never experienced before. Channel you inner curiosity to explore everything that marketing has to offer and you’ll find yourself well-balanced and well-poised to be tomorrow’s leader. And remember, you are always CMO of brand You, so put your best foot forward in everything you do."

Barbara Martin Coppola

"While observing and listening are incredibly important to growth, I have found that jumping in, experimenting and trying new things accelerate learning. Additionally, being exposed to new roles regularly is important to build a well-rounded base and stretch oneself to acquire fresh skills. Finally, and most importantly, follow your passions, not others' passions. It's your life. Stay humble, and stay hungry."

Omar Abdala

"Reach back into all parts of your personal experience and take advantage of your background in to make meaningful contributions. Effective advertising/marketing utilizes so many diverse skill sets from the rigorously quantitative to the anecdotal and qualitative. For me, this took the form of utilizing skills in stochastic model solving against problems in networks delivery and data targeting and optimization, but this sort of cross-disciplinary borrowing can come in many forms. If the math men have made a contribution to marketing, there is certainly a contribution to be made from social science to art and beyond."

Carrie Montagna

"If you’re new to the marketing world, I encourage you to become active on social media. Create or strengthen your LinkedIn profile with examples of projects you’ve worked on. Join marketing groups to learn and provide your input on topics. Network with peers and even those executives who you aspire to be one day. Get your name out there and you never know what marketing opportunities may come your way." 


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American Marketing Association
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