Friday, April 23, 2010

Full-time Recruiting is Here Already! - with General Mills

(by Derek Herbst, Booth ’04)

May is almost here, summer is around the corner, and your internships begin in just a few weeks. It must be time for full-time recruiting. Huh? Really? Well, yes, at least for marketing at General Mills. I’m a Marketing Manager at General Mills, as well as the Recruiting Team lead, and I want to make sure everyone knows about our Fast Track recruiting program. (The job posting will open up next week for all 1st year students!)

Before I get into the details, here’s a little background. Unfortunately, General Mills didn’t have an internship spot this past year for Booth. We have had an internship spot in years past, but for the last couple of years and looking forward, we are focusing our efforts on our Fast Track program. So what is Fast Track? It’s a unique program that culminates in the late summer. We identify high potential candidates during their 1st year and then invite them to interview for a full-time position over the summer. Fast Trackers are flown up to Minneapolis for a day of interviews and then can potentially walk back on campus with a full-time offer in hand.

This is a pretty cool opportunity because if you have an internship and you get a full-time offer from that, you could have two offers in hand before you start classes next September. You might not need to bother with any full-time recruiting next fall.

Below are some more details of the program and the recruiting process. We hope you are interested and we wish you the best of luck!

How many Fast Track spots will be available to Booth students?
At this point, we expect to invite at least one to two Booth students to Minneapolis for Fast Track. Last year we invited three students, with Sharon Duchin receiving (and accepting) an offer!

What’s the process or next steps?
There will be a job posting on the Booth system beginning next week, starting Monday 4/26. All interested students should submit a resume and cover letter. Deadline for all resumes will be Friday, May 7th. (To find the job posting, you should be able to simply logon to GTS and search for the posting under full-time position opportunities.)

From there we will select a number of students to interview over the phone in mid to late May. After the round of phone interviews, we will extend invitations to at least 1 – 2 students to come up for a weekend in the summer for a day of interviews at the General Mills campus. Currently, we are targeting mid-September for the final interviews.

Why are final interviews so late in the summer, especially if the process begins now?
We recognize that most students have summer internships, which means that that is their #1 summer focus. We need to begin the process now, but wait until the end of the summer for final interviews because by that time most internships have ended, and students can refocus on other things like General Mills!

How do I find out more information – either about General Mills or its Fast Track Program?
Feel free to send me an email ( or reach out to any of the other marketing alums you might know at General Mills. Also, Sharon Duchin (’10) is also a great resource. She will be joining General Mills in the summer and received her offer through the Fast Track program.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

How I Chose Booth

With the second and final Admit Weekend of the year now upon us, I wanted to take a minute to think back to where I was just about a year ago and how I came to decide that Booth was the right school for me. Marketing may not be the first word that comes to mind when you hear Chicago Booth, but as an applicant with his sights set on moving into the world of marketing after earning my MBA, I ended up making the decision that Booth was where I wanted to be. In this entry I wanted to lay out some of the reasons that led me to that choice – both to help any admitted students who are still wrestling with their decision and as a quick reminder to current Boothies why we are here.

  1. Reputations aren’t everything. Chicago Booth is a name that is synonymous with finance, accounting and economics, but people need to realize that this is not a “finance” school. US News & World Report recently ranked Booth as the number six school for marketing. BusinessWeek ranked Booth 5th in marketing.
  2. Booth is the best place to develop the analytical and quantitative skills that are shaping the future of marketing. More and more companies are insights driven, rely on research and data to make marketing decisions, and are looking for talented MBAs who can use this research and data to drive sales and profits. I am currently taking two marketing classes – Gunter Hitsch’s Data-Driven Marketing and Jean-Pierre Dube’s Pricing Strategies – and both are helping me get a strong grasp of the analytical tools that can help brands and products grow. Having spoken with a number of alums, these analytical marketing courses are consistently cited as among the most applicable and beneficial to their careers, and there is no better place to learn this approach to marketing than Chicago Booth.
  3. The flexibility granted by Booth has allowed me to construct my own path toward my own career. If you have researched Booth, you have heard and read plenty about the flexible curriculum, and I have to say, even after all I heard about it, I can’t begin to describe how valuable I have found it. As I near the end of my first year, I have been able to take courses that will have a direct impact on my ability to succeed in my internship this summer. Technology Strategy, Pricing Strategies, Data Driven Marketing, Marketing Research – each of these classes (among the total of 11 that I will have completed as of the end of Spring Quarter) has given me specific skills that will help me succeed this summer – and ideally help me turn my summer internship into a full-time offer. The opportunity to develop my own curriculum at Booth was a major part of my decision to attend the school and I believe it will pay immense dividends in both the short and long run of my career.
  4. Finally, the career opportunities played a big role in my school choice. I was strongly considering another top ranked business school, but was a bit concerned that so many of their graduates ended up in a specific region of the country and in specific industries. As it happens, I am going to an internship in that industry and in that region, but I wanted options. And I had those at Booth. As a marketer, I had the opportunity to apply for on campus interviews in CPG in Chicago (Kraft, Pepsi, MillerCoors, Wrigley), Financial Services in New York (AmEx), Technology on the West Coast (Microsoft, Intel), as well as numerous jobs in fields such as Healthcare and QSR and in cities from coast to coast. And that doesn’t even touch on the opportunities posted that did not interview on campus (which is how I got my internship), companies marketers met with on career treks to the West Coast, New York, and Minneapolis, or the huge network of alums who are more than happy to take your calls or emails and help you find an opportunity.

Honestly, this list could have a dozen more entries at least. I haven’t mentioned LEAD, a program which I did not fully understand as an admit but found extremely valuable as a student; the facilities at the Harper and Gleacher Centers, which are world-class; the faculty, who are even more world-class; or the Kilts Center. And probably my biggest oversight is the community around the school, from the second years who took time from their day to help me pick classes, write a resume and prepare for interviews to my classmates who were more than happy to help me figure out a problem set and work on a cover letter – even if it was for a job they were also trying to get.

But as an admit who wasn’t sure what to expect from the other students, hadn’t met the professors, and wasn’t exactly sure what to expect, the four items listed above really helped me wrap my head around the business school question and led me to matriculate to Chicago Booth.

If you are at Admit Weekend and want to talk a bit about marketing at Booth, the Marketing
Group will have a table at LPF on Friday (if you don’t know that means, I am sure you will find out when you arrive) and I will be there along with my fellow co-chairs. If you are not able to make it, feel free to email me at chad.young – at – chicagobooth – dot – edu and I will do my best to get back to you quickly.

Good luck with your decision and I hope to see you in the Fall!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Announcing the NEW Chicago Booth Marketing Group Blog

Welcome to the Chicago Booth Marketing Group blog. This blog is intended to be your go-to blog for all things Booth marketing, and it will be updated weekly with important marketing news.

Expect interviews and profiles of alums, advice on classes and recruiting, guest entries from alums, and interesting tidbits on what is going on out there with the thousands of Booth marketers around the world.

Stay tuned, more to come soon!