Introduce yourself to our audience. Tell us who you are and what you are currently focused on.
Hello! My name is Jenny and I am passionate about helping startups and other high tech companies grow and scale by focusing on the customer.
I believe in elevating the customer relationship by focusing on scalable and sustainable customer success and support. I do this by improving customer education and onboarding to reduce churn, increase revenue and keep annual recurring revenue (ARR) clients coming back year after year.
Let's chat about women in tech, breaking into tech, compensation negotiation, applying for jobs out of state, general application techniques, networking and working in the startup world.
Tell us about your favorite Ellevate Network memory or success story. Why are you a member?
A former co-worker highly recommended Ellevate. She spoke highly of squads; I can’t wait to join one!
I am a member of Ellevate because I am looking to connect with like minded professional women. I strongly believe in the power of weak ties and would love to expand my network (and yours)!
What qualities does it take for someone to be successful in your line of work?
Not only does it take traditional workplace and technical skills to be successful it also takes self promotion.
Be sure to talk about your successes and work on being visible in the workplace. You can do great work, but if no one knows about it you won’t get the recognition, promotion and compensation you deserve.
Tell your manager about your successes and opportunities (also known as challenges). Tell your coworkers what you’re working on. Partner with cross-functional teams. Always remember, you are your own best advocate.
I keep a list of achievements, projects and successes throughout the year so when it’s review time I have all the tools and metrics I need to advocate for myself. I encourage you to do the same!
What are some career challenges on your radar?
The biggest career challenge I see is the need for inclusion in tech. I see a lack of women in management, executive leadership roles, and on boards.
“Among the largest 3,000 largest U.S. publicly traded companies, only about one in five board members are women. Nearly one in 10 boards have no women,” according to NPR’s “A Push to Get More Women on Corporate Boards Gains Momentum.”
It’s a big problem and will require complex solutions, but small steps towards progress are happening.
I hope to lead by example and continue to move up in my career. I am always conscious about giving back to the community, especially other women. I wouldn’t be where I am today without all the help I received along the way. For me, it’s important to pay it forward when I can. That’s why I’m always happy to help with resume reviews, job referrals, sharing resources and acting as a mentor and sponsor at work.
We’d love to hear more about your career path. What led you to where you are today?
My career path is not a straight line, nor was it my expected trajectory. I started my career in marketing at a non-profit, pivoted to sales at a Fortune 500 company and then dove into the tech world where I worked at a series of high tech, high growth startups and larger tech companies.
While I was doing sales, I became increasingly interested in the tech scene through consuming articles, books and podcasts on it during my free time. I thought about it so much I knew I just had to be a part of it. So I dove into the tech scene and moved out to the Bay Area to be right in the heart of it.
Today I get to help invent the future of social. I work on a product that empowers people to connect and go beyond traditional social platforms.
“You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something - your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever.” - Steve Jobs
What is the most rewarding part of your job?
The most rewarding part is seeing strategies and tactics that I helped create propell my team and my company hit our goals! It’s a great feeling to look at the metrics and see how big of an impact my actions made.
A close second is talking to customers and hearing how much they enjoy the product I am working on. It’s truly great when I hear about how our product connects people all over the globe!
What is your morning ritual?
During the work from home era my morning ritual has become more important than ever. My morning routine consists of two pieces, movement and fuel. This sets the tone for the entire day and allows me to be more focused and effective.
Movement: I row on the Novice Master’s sculling team 3 days per week at 6AM and then come home to stretch before jumping into work. The other days I “commute” to work by walking around my neighborhood. If I have time I will do some yoga from the DownDog app.
Fuel: I will either grab a breakfast bar or a slice of quiche. Post rowing can sometimes trigger the need for a second breakfast and will grab some fruit. My favorites are flavor king pluots or honeycrisp apples. I make sure to hydrate extra, especially on days I row. I always say “You have to hydrate to be great.” I make coffee and drink it at my desk. I am constantly trying out new flavors. Send me your coffee suggestions!
Is work-life balance a problem for you? What is one no-fail tactic you use to create balance?
It can be, if I let it. My solution is time blocking in Google Calendar. It seems simple because it is. However, it goes a long way when you set aside uninterrupted time to work on projects or do deep thinking.
Plus, it helps me communicate my schedule and availability. I schedule all types of activities both personal and professional. Some examples are important meetings, time to deep dive on projects, workouts and watercolor afternoons on the weekend. If you don’t control your calendar, it will control you.
What advice would you offer future leading ladies wishing to break into your industry?
“Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. It shouldn't be that women are the exception,” said Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Decisions are being made, wealth is created and equity is granted in the tech industry. Women belong in tech. Don’t let anything hold you back. If you’re interested in working in tech go for it.
A few quick tips that have helped me: Always negotiate total compensation. Confidence is key. Create your own personal board of directors. Fill it with people who you respect and that you have access to. Leverage them when you need counsel, advice or just need to vent.
What is the best career advice you ever received?
“Take opportunities before you’re ready for them,” Susan Cameron, CEO at RAI (Fortune 500, CPG company) told me.
Oftentimes, if we wait until we feel truly ready for an opportunity we might be waiting a long time and might miss the opportunity. Make the leap before you feel ready, you can do it!
Have more questions? Follow up with the expert herself.
Lead Subscription Program Manager
Jenny Pollock is IMVU’s Lead Subscription Program Manager. She’s passionate about helping high tech companies grow and scale by focusing on customers. Her experience spans SaaS and hardware companies. Jenny is devoted to creating sustainable and scalable systems to manage customer relationships. She has developed systems for customer education, worked to reduce churn, secured renewals, and partnered cross-functionally to bring product improvements to customers. Find her discussing all things tech on Twitter at @Jennykaypollock. ★ I create... Continue Reading
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