Why Qualtrics? Hear from Jessica Nava, Sales Manager, in Provo, UT
At Qualtrics we want to connect our people to careers that feed their purpose; jobs that motivate & inspire them. This is Jessica’s “Why Qualtrics” story about how a Sales Career at Qualtrics has helped her continue to deliver on a life of impact.
It’s really simple…my kids are my “why”: they are my everything. I feel blessed to have influence on my 2 daughters and my son. They are at stages in their lives where they are starting to have an impact on their worlds (even at 16, 14, and 11) and I can already see the example my husband and I have set having an impact in a ripple effect and that keeps me going every day.
What’s driven my focus on my career is showing the impact you can have by being both a mom and a career professional. As I got into my career I questioned, “can I do both?” There’s a constant pull, and it’s not for everyone. I think I’ve been able to do a good job of finding the flexibility (if that’s a thing), and have gotten to help others find what works for them. Both roles are very demanding: 3 kids and a sales leadership position. So showing how you can do both helps to instill the belief in others, especially women who want a career and motherhood.
What attracted you to Qualtrics in the first place?
With my kids being a bit older, I knew I could take a risk in moving my career forward. I fell in love with the Leadership Principles at the Q – TACOS – and the way the Q really loves on our people just like you do in a family, and that resonated with me because you don’t see that in “Corporate America.”
Not to mention I fell in love with the space we’ve created for companies. It’s the same theme: we love our customers and we want them to love their customers. That’s what experience management is – wanting everyone to love the experience. And there are not many companies that embody that wholly.
What was the turning point where you ‘had to have the job’?
The moment that I walked into the lobby I remember I was with our recruiting team, and they had started to give an intro into how things are laid out at Q, and then I saw TACOS, no not the food – the leadership principles (Transparency, All In, Customer Obsessed, One Team, and Scrappy) on the pillars next to the basketball court. I’ve seen in 20 years of sales so many companies that have their mission/vision in their lobby, but to just have 5 simple words describe you – that’s a confidence I had never seen in an org, and I had to be a part of it.
What does your day look like?
I wake up at 5:30 to get in my daily prayer time and coffee, I’m in the office by 7:30 (I like to be the first one from my team in), I get another cup of coffee and prepare for my day with my “must be done” list. Then it’s non-stop. As I tell my kids when they ask me about my day it could be 4, 6, or 8 meetings. My job is to be there for my team. To motivate, lead & support. I really try to be out by 5:30 to start my 2nd job – being a Mom – but I do plug in the evening again to make sure I’m ready for the next day. That’s also when I do my work for WLD, our Women’s Leadership Development Group, which is an Employee Resource Group where I’m loving being the Chair for a 2 year term. Then I pass out at 10! I know, I know, I need to find time to work out.
What is your favorite part of your role?
I’ll share my favorite part of both of my roles at the Q!
My favorite part of WLD is seeing a generation of women who are willing to stand up for themselves and drive change. Because I’ve been fighting for Women’s voices to be heard my entire career and now we are seeing some results! I love that this group of amazing women are seeing an impact.
In my Sales Leadership role what I love most is when my account executives find success in all they are doing – not just hitting quota and making money – but when they’re finding a career that fulfills them. That success then drives the bigger overall vision of Q – it’s experiencing Employee Experience first hand.
So, you gave up New York for Utah! Some would wonder about that choice. Tell us about the move.
It wasn’t a hard decision to move to Utah: I’ve lived in London, Philly, and New York and this was my venture West. But this was the first time I had to move with my kids. My kids were 15, 13, and 11 at the time, and uprooting your kids in high school and middle school is treacherous so we allowed the kiddos to finish school and my husband stayed behind while I moved out to UT for 6 months alone to get settled in.
It was a great decision in the end to have 6 months to myself to get comfortable in the role without feeling “mom guilt.” I worked the hours I needed to in order to get settled in the job, and then by the time family joined me I already knew places to go and where we wanted to live. I think my confidence helped them to adapt easier too.
So many people told me Utah was a great place to live and for kids, and it truly is. It’s a very “outdoorsy” place as my 11 year old son says – so you have to take advantage of all UT has to offer – hiking, biking, National Parks and just taking in all the beauty! Now, the move itself hasn’t been without challenges. Making friends as an adult is hard, but since the Q is a family I’ve been able to make some great friends with fellow Qualtricians in a similar position that have relocated to UT, and I am so grateful for them.
Any tips for someone who is considering a role at Qualtrics?
Buckle up. It’s about to get fun.
It’s fast, it’s hard, and it’s rewarding. You won’t regret a minute of it. Qualtrics is the most challenging place I’ve ever worked but, at the same time, it’s also the most rewarding. You can see the impact of everything you’re doing. Not to mention you’re working alongside the most brilliant, driven people you’ll ever work with in your career. My biggest piece of advice, honestly, is to get ready to voice your opinion. We need new ideas on how to do things, and Qualtrics is open to ideas.
What surprised you most about working at Qualtrics?
I knew we did things well, but we do everything well. I thought it had just been the videos I saw when I was interviewing: I mean, a company puts their best foot forward on social media to entice applicants. But it’s everything we do here at the Q: lunches, events for customers at X4, employee SWAG. And then to top it off – we have the most amazing product on the market.
What made you want to get into sales?
I don’t think I wanted to get into sales. I think I fell into sales. In fact, I had no intention of getting into sales: I had a degree in marketing & finance from Drexel University in Philadelphia and had done 3 co-ops in more traditional marketing roles. Then in an interview with a female sales leader who was just like me – she was an athlete, competitive, and outgoing – I realized sales might be a great fit for me.
Working in sales allows me the flexibility and autonomy to “run my own business.” I discovered that sales fit my entrepreneurial spirit, and gave me just enough freedom to keep me happy. So though I fell into it, I ended up in the right career and wouldn’t change a thing.
What are your aspirations in career/life?
Ultimately I want to finish my book and become a national public speaker. I’ve wanted to write a book since AP English in high school where it became a dream of mine. I just didn’t know what it would be about. Then in my 30’s, I started a professional networking group and realized how people struggle at developing relationships. On the flip side, I had seen so many successful business owners and leaders be incredible at creating lasting and impactful connections. So that’s what I’m working on. It’s taken me a little bit longer to write it than I would have hoped – but that’s me allowing flexibility in my life and knowing that everything happens for a reason.
What is your top #LifeHack?
But in all seriousness, you have to have something that you love and that recharges you. And don’t let yourself forget what that is. Whether that’s working out, a great glass of wine, or reading a book. Hang onto whatever it is which refills your soul. We all get caught up in things and feel like there’s no time. Find time to recharge your soul.
How have you become involved in community at Qualtrics?
I truly believe a part of my purpose is helping develop community wherever I go. When I was interviewing with our senior sales leadership at the Q, I had mentioned how important it was for me to be involved in the board activities I participated in during the last decade of my career, and they asked me to help drive that “community” here at the Q with our Women’s Leadership Development group.
And that’s what I did that from day one. The Women’s Leadership Development group became central to my involvement in the community here at the Q. Starting with our Working Moms committee, I then helped launch our WLD newsletter on a quarterly basis to give Women a voice at the Q, and then we kicked-off our Sales Women in Leadership development mentor program. About a year in, our Chairwoman of WLD decided to move to Dublin (huge kudos to her!), and I decided to run for the position. Now, here I am a few months later, loving every minute of helping drive the strategy of closing the Gender Gap.
We’ve taken the group from a discussion group – reading books, learning about Inclusion and Diversity, etc – to having an impact on all of Qualtrics. So, not only have I loved being a part of WLD, but now, as we’re formalizing all of Q groups(we have 5), we’re forming processes to help develop these communities that have been underserved in many ways in business. I love being at the start of something new. I love filling gaps for things where solutions didn’t exist. And WLD has allowed me the opportunity to grow a culture that makes sure everyone is feeling included from day one.
What is the one thing you’ve gotten back from WLD?
In every woman I see at Qualtrics, I see glimpses of my daughters. I think about the impact that we are having on the future. Every time someone in WLD or a woman at the Q has a success, I cry tears of joy. Because 20 years ago, we were so much further behind than where we are today. We are making huge strides!
Qualtrics is growing, and if you’re ready to find your “why” at a place like this, you can explore our open opportunities at any time by visiting our career page. Looking to discover more reasons “Why Qualtrics”? You can find the whole series here.
|Jessica is an alumnus of Drexel University and started her career at Broadview Communications. Her free time is spent driving Women’s Initiatives with our Women’s Leadership Development or being in the Gym watching or playing Volleyball!|