Creating Opportunities For Myself, My Clients and Colleagues

Alexandra is an Account Manager, based in our New York City office. Since joining Nielsen in 2015, Alexandra has created opportunities for herself, the clients that she partners with, and her fellow colleagues at Nielsen.

op·por·tu·ni·ty: noun, a set of circumstances that makes it possible to do something.

When I graduated from Pace University in May 2015, my commencement speech to my fellow graduates centered around the school’s motto of Opportunitas. I wanted to share with this class of eager and ambitious students the secret I had uncovered in my four years of undergraduate studies: “Find opportunities, and if you can’t find them, create your own.”

While at Pace, I worked hard to open doors to amazing experiences for both myself and my classmates. I double-majored in Arts & Entertainment Management and Global Marketing with a minor in Economics. Additionally, I completed 12 internships at multiple media companies. I made sure that I sought out every opportunity New York City had to offer, and even  created new ones, such as the women’s empowerment organization I formed on campus. Graduating school was exciting for me; I felt the combination of angst and anticipation many feel when making a change. Even though I was unsure of what lay ahead, I looked forward to new possibilities.

Luckily for me, I found myself interviewing and accepting a job at Nielsen in the Local Television division of the U.S. Media group shortly after graduating. Surprisingly, I knew a lot about Nielsen for a fresh graduate. I wrote my thesis on Social Television, diving into Nielsen’s measurements and the industry’s flux of change towards digital and social audiences. Yet I also knew there would be many ways for me to continue to learn and grow, as well as to help others within Nielsen; I just needed to uncover them.

After my first year on the job, I was given such an opportunity. Senior leadership decided to take a chance on me by not only promoting me for a great first year but also dramatically changing the clients I served. Overnight I had over more than 100 clients in some of our largest markets such as Detroit (my hometown), Chicago and Minneapolis, compared with the 20 clients I had previously worked with.

This was my moment to prove to senior leadership that taking a chance on me was the right decision. Not only could I do this new job, but I would thrive in it. A year later, I proved successful in the role. I’ve treated my clients like family and have acted as an extension of their team. Without our clients, Nielsen wouldn’t be in business! I set out to make sure our clients not only had exemplary service, but knew how important and valued they are to us.

Interestingly enough I also found another opportunity this past year. In April, I launched the Northeast chapter of our Employee Resource Group (ERG), Nielsen Generation (N-GEN), out of our New York office. N-GEN is focused on bridging the gap between the generations within the workplace. Nielsen is a unique organization because there is a huge range of employees, from those who have been with the company for more than 40 years to those just starting out their careers.

With so many publications exploring the differences in work ethics and expectations of different generations in the workforce, some stigmas and biases have appeared. N-GEN’s goal is to prove that, at the end of the day, we aren’t subdivided by our age or generation, but instead we are united as one organization working towards a common goal. Since launching N-GEN, many new initiatives have been created. This year we are developing a video series highlighting not only the diverse talent at Nielsen, but the changes and commonalities across the generations. Nielsen is extremely invested in Diversity and Inclusion, so learning how many employees also care constantly inspires me on both a personal and professional level.

What I’ve learned recently at Nielsen is that some opportunities might be large, such as launching an ERG or taking on a new role, and some might be small like giving a lecture on the Media Industry at New York University or taking a selfie with our CEO, Mitch Barns. For all these possibilities, I’m grateful for Mitch and Nielsen for an incredible two years!