By Egotist / /
Down to the last few 32 Under 32 interviews. We hope you’ve enjoyed them as much as we have. It’s always great talking to the up and coming stars of our industry. Today we’re talking with Whitney Evans, Account Manager at Heat. We’ll be finishing up next week, so check back then.
Congrats on being chosen as one of the top 32 advertising and marketing professionals under 32. We selected people who really go above and beyond in their work. How do you think you approach your job differently than other people?
There can be a lot of stress in advertising. Deadlines are always shifting, budgets always shrinking, and sometimes it can become overwhelming. I’ve found that maintaining the outward façade of being calm and collected can really go a long way. When you’re positive and optimistic in the face of imminent doom, people tend to follow your lead. Making people laugh and lifting the gravity of a stressful situation reminds your team to relax and just keep going. I think that’s what I do differently. I can acknowledge the craziness of a situation but still bring people back down to earth and let them know that they’re doing their best, we’re all in it together, and that it’s ok to laugh through trying situations.
What kind of accounts/projects are you working on these days?
I’m fully committed to new business these days. All the RFIs, RFPs, pitches and inquiries that come through Heat come through the marketing team, which is about four gals, including me. I did do my fair share of client account work when I first started at Heat, but I was drawn to the fast pace and constant change involved with new business. It has definitely proven to be that and more. I’ve learned so much and continue to be blown away by how much more I still have to learn.
What is it about where you currently work that really pushes you to be better?
Everyone I work with is smart. Everyone. So many Heaters have had such long tenures in advertising and their knowledge just seems unending. The people at Heat are always there to help you, particularly when you show interest or dedication. They’ll always stop and talk you through things. They don’t look down on you for asking questions or needing further explanation if you don’t understand something. They sincerely want you to succeed and learn. And that’s what pushes me on a daily basis.
In thinking over your career so far, what work had made you the proudest?
I am really proud that I was promoted recently after nearly two years in my previous role. That was huge. I worked my ass off and it totally paid off. I think that’s probably my biggest “accomplishment” in terms of my career. I know that probably doesn’t seem very groundbreaking or amazing, but I’m really proud that the people I work with, who I respect so much, value me enough to let me continue to hang out and contribute. I think that means a lot and it’s what matters to me.
You volunteer with 826 Valencia. Tell us about that.
826 is great. I began volunteering with them when I first moved to SF in 2013. I got to work with high school kids who were writing college admissions essays and it was incredibly rewarding. I’ve unfortunately been out of town a lot lately and haven’t been able to contribute much time to 826, so I’ve been donating to an organization called Children International instead. It’s a charity that aims to end global poverty by contributing to the education, health, and emotional wellbeing of children and teens in less fortunate countries. You (yes, you) should donate.
Here’s a ridiculously clichéd interview question for you: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
10 years feels so far away. It feels far enough away to say that I hope, by that point, I’ve done some incredibly smart investing so that I’m independently wealthy and traveling the world writing short stories and drinking wine on my yacht in the Mediterranean. But if that’s not where I am, my main goal is to be happy and working with a group of people who are also happy. I’d love to be working for the greater good, whether it’s in advertising or something totally different. Either way, as long as I’m around people who are excited, dedicated, and genuinely enjoy what they do, I’ll be just fine.
This might be tough, but here’s your chance to give a shout out to one person who has helped you get to where you are today. Go.
This one is tough. The answer is always “my mom,” but to be Heat-specific, I’d have to say Teri Miller. She’s Heat’s Director of Marketing. No one works harder than Teri. She’s always cool under pressure, always has great input and feedback, and is always open, honestly, and positive. I don’t know where Heat would be without her and I’m the luckiest to get to work for her.