September 2, 2014
Welcome to "Intern Insights", a series of blog posts written by the ten college students working with TubeMogul this summer. Each week we will publish a blog post from one of our interns outlining their learnings, experiences and digital video trends they observe while they work with us. Enjoy! I am Nora Healy, a Marketing and Events intern at TubeMogul headquarters in Emeryville, California. I have spent the last few months here at TubeMogul learning invaluable lessons about this company, its employees, and the industry it operates in. Right off the bat I learned that Mogulers will always look out for one another. There is no sense of “every man for himself” in this company. Instead, there is a common understanding that Mogulers are around to help each other out. This is very comforting for an intern, seeing as learning requires lots of question asking and advice-seeking from co-workers.
The mindset around the office reminds me of a certain motto I have become familiar with at my university, known as the “Mustang Way”. This adage reminds Cal Poly students to value pride, responsibility, character and, among other things, that the diverse work of many is always more powerful than what any individual has the ability to produce on their own.
That sense of collaboration and interconnectivity is the very thing that ushered me through the doors here at TubeMogul. I have had the pleasure of working alongside two fellow Mustang alums on the Marketing Team, and I have them to thank for bringing word of this internship all the way to the Journalism department at Cal Poly, because it led me to this opportunity.
I have observed the spirit of collaboration – the same one Mustangs are encouraged to embody – from the very first day of my internship at TubeMogul. (Even though we Mustang Mogulers are outnumbered nearly 100-to-1 by Cal Bears, it became immediately apparent to me that both Universities must share a similar set of values.)
Another important component of the “Mustang Way” is the overall motto, “learn by doing”. This motto runs parallel to the TubeMogul value of “work quickly: making mistakes is ok, going slow is not”. The TubeMogul way of working means owning up to any mistakes and then immediately seeking out any lessons to be learned from them. It takes a humble, perseverant worker to remain calm in the wake of his or her own mistakes and then implement improvements the next go-round. Not everyone in the world works this way, but any Moguler definitely does.
CEO Brett Wilson phrased it quite simply in a recent New York Times Corner Office interview; “It’s about constant iteration and self-awareness while you’re executing the plan. So if you make a mistake, you admit it and aggressively course-correct.”
I had never before been encouraged to make mistakes in a job, so I found it fascinating that there were posters up on the wall in TubeMogul headquarters explicitly encouraging employees to do so. But, the more I thought about it, the more sense this concept made to me. When the time came that I did make a mistake, I wasn’t reprimanded, but rather encouraged to take a look at the problem from a different perspective and consider how the task could be executed more efficiently. I see that as an important strategy to learn, not just for business, but for life in general.
The point at which I experienced the “work quickly” concept in action was the point I realized Mogulers really knew what they were talking about. As this company rapidly evolves, so does the workflow for each employee in each department. Though responsibilities constantly shift and grow, you will never hear a Moguler complain. Everyone pitches in on projects and contributes more than what is expected of them, always going above and beyond to Get Sh*t Done (or GSD as we say here).
In the midst of all the events on her busy global events calendar, my manager Rachele was always more than happy to set aside time to offer me sound workplace (and life) advice while still managing to achieve the delicate balance of being a trusting but constructive leader.
The same goes for the rest of the Marketing Team. Each member, on more than one occasion, helped me with a project by contributing advice from his or her own field of expertise. Whether it had to do with event planning, writing awards submissions, product marketing, corporate branding, photography or digging for data, my mentors were more than happy to share their knowledge.
After watching the Marketing Team bring to life impressive projects out of our little “Attic”, I learned how each member of the team contributes something both necessary and unique to the overall company picture.
That’s what I respect most about TubeMogul and the employees within its walls: they are fearlessly pushing forward through the yet-to-be-fully-defined frontier of Advertising Technology. Or, “doing a lot with a little” (which is another TubeMogul-ism). They are driven by their own innovative ideas and motivations, lean on each other where necessary, but are ever-moving and evolving both individually and as a team. They do their work with good attitudes and smiles on their faces, plus they know when and how to appropriately celebrate when all their hard work pays off (and they are happy to invite their interns to the party).