Optoro’s Rotational Leadership Program is a unique opportunity that positions recent graduates on a career path in the technology and eCommerce industries. Associates rotate through four departments within our core business functions for two years, spending six months in each rotation. We currently offer rotations across eight departments: Data, Technology, eCommerce Marketing, Corporate Marketing, Corporate Sustainability, Client Success, and Talent & Culture.

The mission of the Rotational Leadership Program is to develop future leaders of the company who can drive lasting value and growth at Optoro. During their time in the program, Rotational Associates gain cross-functional skills and knowledge while contributing to and supporting departmental and company-wide strategic goals. Rotational Associates serve as key members on a variety of teams, leveraging their unique backgrounds to benefit each department in which they work. This week, we spoke with past and present participants in the program about their experience.


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Name: Dakota Pekerti
Year: First-year Rotational Associate
School: Swarthmore College, 2016
Major: Engineering and Environmental Studies, focus on Sustainability and Renewable Energy
Interests: Capoeira, experimenting with food, and tinkering

 

 

1. Why did you choose a Rotational Program over other opportunities? What stood out to you about Optoro’s program?

During my job search senior year, I found that many opportunities required me to be siloed into a specific role and set of responsibilities without much room for growth. I realized that while I will be able to specialize at any other point in my life, windows of opportunity like the Rotational Program would only be available to me in this period of my life. In combination with great benefits, work culture, and mentorship, the Rotational Program offers me the chance to cultivate new skills and experiences in a dynamic environment while leveraging my own background to create tangible impact.

2. What advice would you give a new class of Rotational Associates?

Remember not to take yourself too seriously, and take time to think about why you’re here. What you learn during the program is a big part of the value you bring (it’s even in the job description!).


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Name: Erin Alexander
Year: Second-year Rotational Associate
School: Yale University, 2015
Major: Political Science, focus on South Asian Studies
Interests: Playing the violin, visiting art museums/galleries, traveling

 

1. Why did you choose a Rotational Program over other opportunities? What stood out to you about Optoro’s program?

Coming from a liberal arts background, I wasn’t too set on any one specific field or industry. While many of my classmates were exploring more traditional consulting/banking roles, my ideal role was one that would allow me to continue learning and growing professionally in a dynamic and fast-paced environment. I heard about the Rotational Program through Yale’s’ careers site, and found that it aligned with my interests quite well. At that time in my job search, I also happened to be leaning towards opportunities in the field of technology, and really valued the ability to continue learning new technical skills, while also actively contributing to Optoro’s future.

2. What skills have you gained over the past year?

Optoro has provided me with a number of opportunities to develop and strengthen a valuable set of transferrable skills. While some rotations have placed more emphasis on strengthening the soft skills that I gained in school (such as communication and writing), other departments have pushed me to learn a new set of technical software skills (SQL, Tableau, Excel, Optiturn).

While both skillsets have proven to be invaluable throughout the program, I strongly believe that some of the more intangible skills have been most crucial. Throughout the interview process, the hiring team emphasized the importance of flexibility, collaboration, and creativity (to name a few). All of these values have been essential across each rotation; due to shifting business priorities and the cross-functional nature of the Rotational Program, I often find myself working with a number of different teams on varied initiatives and challenges. As such, the program has certainly proven to be a dynamic space that lends itself to continuous learning and development.


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Name: Amy Sung
Year: Graduate of the Rotational Program
School: Brown University, 2014
Major: Environmental Science, focus on Environmental Health Impacts
Interests: Vegetarian cooking, reading The New York Times, hiking

 

1. Why did you choose a Rotational Program over other opportunities? What stood out to you about Optoro’s program?

When I was searching for jobs in my last year of college, I wasn’t sure what I would want to do on a daily basis and where to jumpstart my career. As someone who was pivoting from a science background in academia to the business world, all I knew was that I enjoyed learning, wanted to work with motivated and talented people, and was interested in exploring the innovative and fast-moving tech space. All of this led me to pursue rotational programs which offer a variety of experiences and continuous learning and growth.

Although I came across several rotational programs during my job search, Optoro was the only program that offered me the opportunity to work at a small, rapidly-growing technology company. Throughout the interview process, it became clear that even as a small company, everyone was invested in the program and the prospect of training future leaders. Ultimately, the decision was easy. I was drawn to the opportunity to join a young and dynamic startup while learning foundational business knowledge applicable across the organization.

2. Do you think the Rotational Program influenced your career trajectory? How so?

The Rotational Program is a special opportunity to experience multiple management styles, work with different teams, and view company priorities from diverse perspectives over a short timespan. This helped me determine my own communication style, which management style I thrive under, and my motivations for success. In my case, the Rotational Program has led me to take on a leadership role in the field that I’m interested in pursuing long-term, as I’ve now transitioned from Rotational Associate to Product Manager. But before I started at Optoro, I didn’t know what tech product management was! I can confidently say that this experience has given me unparalleled learning opportunities, from management techniques to data-warehouse technology, that will remain pivotal to guiding and influencing my career.

For more information on the Rotational Leadership program, email careers@optoro.com.