• August 20, 2016

Take Advantage of Unplanned Opportunities, Marketing Exec Counsels Students

Taking advantage of work experiences—even failures—is the key to career growth, Sam Pontrelli told California Baptist University students on April 5.

Pontrelli is the senior vice president of worldwide marketing at Monster Energy. His presentation was part of the Voices of Business lecture series hosted by the Dr. Robert K. Jabs School of Business at CBU.

"It's OK if you fail. You're not going to come up with that next great idea if you're afraid to fail," Pontrelli said. "Everything that I perceived as a negative in my career all set me up for my job today."

Pontrelli encouraged students to be patient in their career development.

"When you're looking at your career and you're not being promoted as quickly as you want to be, or you might get assigned something that's a little bit different from what you want, try to make the best of it," Pontrelli said. "See what you can do, make the most out of [the opportunity]. Learn how to be a leader within, so when the right opportunity comes along you're prepared for it."

It is vital for students to understand that careers are not formed instantaneously, he said.

"We all are kind of aggressive in nature and want to move up quickly. It will happen if you do the right things," Pontrelli said. "It worked out great for me. It took a few detours but it all worked out."