SMPS January Coordinators Club Blog Post | Professional Development Roundtable

January’s Coordinators Club was all about professional development. Over a warm breakfast (and let’s not forget coffee), the brightest minds in AEC marketing came together to candidly discuss their past experiences and give advice regarding three topics: Performance Review/Monetary Compensation, Career Mapping, and Gaining Support for Professional Development Events. To foster an open, collaborative environment, the attendees were broken out into the three small groups where the moderators of each topic rotated systematically. This approach sparked a lot of open dialogue, yielding great insight and practical tips to take back to the office. Each group had a great mix of new marketers, seasoned marketers, and individuals who served in a business development role; this brought invaluable perspectives and candid, sound advice.

Leading the Performance Review/Monetary Compensation discussion was Jason Ybarra, Account Executive at Mackenzie Ryan. Jason peeled back the curtain on the ever-so-nerve-racking discussion of how to negotiate your raise. He spelled out four critical steps to negotiate a raise: prepare your pitch; find how your salary compares; consider negotiating benefits and perks; and choose the appropriate time for your pitch. He then took a deep dive into how to navigate your performance review, providing several practical tips including how to prepare for your review, powerful words to use, things to avoid, and things to tell your boss. This conversation ignited a lot of open dialog and storytelling amongst the group and at the end, I could tell all felt prepared and empowered to tackle this conversation with more confidence in the future.

When discussing Career Mapping, everyone joined the conversation with enthusiasm and questions. Moderating the discussion was Jennifer Barker, CPSM, Corporate Marketing Specialist at WK Dickson, and Kim Fowler, CPSM, Marketing Manager at Falcon Engineering. Jennifer and Kim did a fantastic job shedding light on the do’s and dont’s of growing your career by sharing their own personal experiences in career growth and/or managing a team. They shared, “You don’t need to fully climb the ‘hierarchy’ to lead to a successful marketing career. Be ambitious in your career goals, but also take the path that is a best fit for you.”

Gaining Support for Professional Development Events can be a challenge at times, Theresa Leahey, Director of Business Development at Affiliated Engineers, addressed this challenge with sound advice. Gaining support from your boss or leadership team can be problematic for a variety of reasons; a general lack of understanding regarding marketing and your day-to-day, not knowing what your needs are, or maybe they are completely unaware of your career goals. Whatever the case, there are two best practices you should always practice to propel your professional development; have routine, open check-in’s with your supervisor and have an internal advocate you can turn to.

Lauren Thaxton

Lauren Thaxton

Lauren Thaxton is Marketing Pursuit Manager at Dewberry

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