Rounding out a marketing career

Having found a passion for marketing and advertising in the digital industry, Adrienne Kiesling looked to Chicago Booth to round out her professional experience, catalyze her career aspirations, and set her on track for future success.

Because my job is very focused on marketing, sales, and product development, some people assumed that I would want an intense focus on marketing during my MBA. I was looking for the cross-disciplinary approach Booth is known for, however, especially in the way it applies to the field of marketing. I knew I could do more for my professional development by becoming well-rounded rather than focusing on one discipline.

Booth quickly exceeded my expectations, and I found myself able to apply concepts from financial accounting, operations, and managerial decision making to my work in marketing and digital advertising. My training helped me develop business acumen across all sectors in the business.

I was taking courses such as Marketing Strategy and Integrated Brand Communications, while also focusing on areas like economics, strategy, and managerial and organizational behavior. This flexibility and integration helped me understand what it takes to be successful within the overall business community.


Being at Booth gave me the opportunity to strengthen my knowledge of the fundamentals. At first, focusing on the quantitative areas took me outside my comfort zone, but really flexing those muscles and learning how to use data in more constructive ways made me stronger and more capable.

In my Integrated Brand Communications course, I was assigned the role of a brand manager during a class simulation. This was a new experience for me as I'm on the publisher side of the business, and gave me the opportunity to come to a greater appreciation of the clients' and customers' perspectives. It helped me realize how important it is, as a supplier, to anticipate the consumers' behaviors.

I've learned to approach problem solving differently than what I'd grown accustomed to in the industry. As a result, I now bring new ways of thinking to the team. I'm able to work cross functionally with people from other departments - from our product group or from our research group. I am confident in my analysis of the information they're giving me and know right away how I'll translate it.

career success

My confidence level grew exponentially as a result of my time at Booth. My manager immediately noticed a change in my approach to business, the depth and quality of the questions I asked during meetings, and a stronger sense of self-assurance. I found myself willing to take on projects I wouldn't have taken on in the past, because I was able to apply what I learned in the classroom.

In recognition of my professional development, my boss promoted me to a new position that was global in scope. My increased ability to engage problems at a strategic level led to my ownership of C-suite engagements, working with clients to redefine and meet their marketing needs.