Name: Brittany Nelson-Turner
Hometown: Cincinnati, Ohio
Current Title: Key Account Manager- Annie’s
Industry: Consumer Packaged Goods
Prior Professional Experience: 10 years at General Mills
Education: BS- Marketing, Minor in Leadership Studies Hampton University, Class of 2009
How did college prepare you for your first job post-graduation?
I heavily utilized the on campus career center to help prepare me for interviews and to gain exposure to different industries through internship opportunities. The class that prepared me the most for my career was my computer science class, as a college junior I thought I would never utilize the formulas or course materials. Today, I use them all the time. I learned so many helpful tips that improve my efficiency.
How did you decide which industry you would work in? And your current role?
I explored and took advantage of internship opportunities throughout my academic experience. I interned in the automotive industry, pharmaceutical sales, and consumer packaged goods. Each of these experiences taught me so much, but I decided to focus on consumer packaged goods because it allowed me to broaden my knowledge of the grocery industry. My first job was at a grocery retailer and I held multiple roles over my tenure. All of these opportunities peaked my overall interest in the grocery industry. I have enjoyed the opportunity of being able to learn and navigate the grocery industry as both a retailer and packaged goods perspective.
What has been the biggest challenge you've faced thus far in your career?
My biggest challenge has been advocating for myself. YOU are your biggest advocate. It is important to have “real” conversations with yourself to determine what you want out of your career. As you mature and grow within your career, you have to continue to have those conversations so that your priorities align with career opportunities. Combining self advocacy, mentorship, and sponsorship within your company will help propel you into various opportunities.
What resources, professional or personal, have you leveraged to ensure your career is progressing?
I’ve taken a variety of approaches to develop my career. First, I’ve been utilizing the available tools within my companies has allowed me to develop and refine my individualized professional development plan. I have also focused on building and maintaining relationships across all levels to make sure that I am well connected with people who could have opportunities that I might be interested in. Finally, I’ve tried to become an expert on a system and tools. Becoming a leader or go to resource for others is a key way to build your name and develop your career.
Do you have a mentor? If so, how did you select this person or people?
Yes. I appreciate candor and direct feedback, so I have selected mentors that offer me this feedback during the good and difficult conversations. I’ve found that my mentors are a great sounding board when I have questions about how to handle work situations or build my career.
What do you wish you could tell your Sophomore-year self?
Have fun and enjoy this moment! Find yourself so that you can stand in your truth and bring your authentic self to the office. Your confidence will shine through in your work, but don’t be afraid to be your own advocate. Build your network and develop relationships with those around you - they will be great and so will YOU!