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Agency Life

Making an Impact

Making an Impact

Sulaiman Beg

Sulaiman Beg

October 22, 2019

Havas Media’s Jamie Seltzer on the group’s Femmes Forward program and how it pushed her into a new, exciting role.

"Femmes Forward enabled me to articulate how my own career goals could benefit the organization as a whole"

After more than three years with Havas Media, Jamie Seltzer took up a new role as Global Managing Director of MarTech & Data Strategy earlier this month.

The self-proclaimed “data geek” talks about the career path that led her to Havas and the importance of women’s leadership development and advancement programs like Havas Group’s Femmes Forward, which empowered her to take the next step.

 

How did you get your start in the industry, and what led you to Havas?

My career in the industry started when I was about eleven years old! My mom owned a market research company and I would take notes for her on the backside of a two-way mirror while she led focus groups. It was my first glimpse into understanding the difference between what marketers wanted to say and what consumers understood.

From there, it was a series of marketing-related internships in high school and college. I spent almost seven years at Avenue A | Razorfish, starting in account management and digital media planning. After two years, I decided to make a move into their data and analytics group, which is how I found my inner data geek.

After that, I spent a number of years with WPP in their data strategy and data product startup, The Data Alliance, ultimately leading data strategy globally for the Colgate-Palmolive business.

I came to Havas Media in 2016 to lead data strategy in the US because the people here reminded me a lot of my early Avenue A days—hungry, fun, and willing to try new things. Havas really felt like a place where I could grow and have a meaningful impact. The growth I’ve seen here over the last three and a half years in size, clients, and work proves that I couldn’t have made a better choice.

Tell us a little about your new role at Havas?

I’m really excited to have joined the Global Data and Innovation team, and I think the role itself is a really fun one. I will be creating Havas Media’s MarTech (Marketing Technology) and data strategy, as well as developing MarTech playbooks for different kinds of clients at different maturity levels.

Our clients, existing and new, are increasingly asking us questions on these topics and I’ll be helping them think through how they, and we, leverage data and technology to drive more meaningful media experiences. This strategy and these playbooks will help us have meaningful client conversations and guide them to make the right decisions.

In addition to that, I’ll be building partnerships with the major global MarTech players to ensure that our strategic recommendations are concrete and can be implemented.

I’m really thrilled to be building on what I learned leading DBi in the US, adapting it to meet the needs of the broader global ecosystem, and applying it to Havas Media’s clients and new business opportunities.

"I don’t know if the job I’ll have in 2025 exists yet and that’s exciting to me"

You participated in the Femmes Forward initiative. What did you learn about yourself during the program and how has it helped you advance in your career?

Femmes Forward helped me most concretely in clarifying for myself where I wanted to take my career (and where I didn’t). It’s incredibly rare to have the time to concentrate on yourself and think through where you want to go in your career. To do so in an organized and systematic way is helpful beyond words. Femmes Forward gave me the time and the framework to do just that.

The program also enabled me to articulate how my own career goals could benefit the organization as a whole. Recent research published in Harvard Business Review shows that women actually ask for raises and promotions as often as men do but are less likely to get them. This program helped arm me with the tools to make my case. And, I’m lucky to be part of an organization that is committed to gender parity in leadership. I think that enabled me to take the next step in my career.

How important has mentorship been in your career development?

Mentorship can come in many forms. I was lucky enough to have great mentors in the form of my mom and stepfather who showed me, from a young age, what it meant to work hard and enjoy it. I was taught how to give a firm handshake at age six!

When it comes to professional mentors, mine are less formal. I have a network of people, including peers, former managers, and friends, who I go to with questions or to bounce around ideas. Our conversations are more than networking; they sometimes include work advice and discussions on where the industry is headed, and I always come away feeling like I learned something from these friendships that came about because of work.

What are your professional goals as you continue to grow and excel in this leadership role?

If someone had asked me five years ago to predict what role I’d be in now, I wouldn’t have been able to because my job didn’t exist five years ago. The same thing holds true moving forward—I don’t know if the job I’ll have in 2025 exists yet and that’s exciting to me. Our industry, especially in the areas of data and technology, is changing so rapidly, and I want to continue to grow with it while making it relevant and valuable to Havas Media and our clients. And I want to be known as a manager, and woman, who leads well and values the roles of her colleagues and team.

What is the best advice you have ever received? 

If you don’t ask, you won’t get. Figure out what you want and articulate it clearly. Make sure you are part of a supportive organization and be that support for your team. Have your facts and make the case, not just for you, but for the benefit of the business.

 

"Femmes Forward enabled me to articulate how my own career goals could benefit the organization as a whole"

After more than three years with Havas Media, Jamie Seltzer took up a new role as Global Managing Director of MarTech & Data Strategy earlier this month.

The self-proclaimed “data geek” talks about the career path that led her to Havas and the importance of women’s leadership development and advancement programs like Havas Group’s Femmes Forward, which empowered her to take the next step.

 

How did you get your start in the industry, and what led you to Havas?

My career in the industry started when I was about eleven years old! My mom owned a market research company and I would take notes for her on the backside of a two-way mirror while she led focus groups. It was my first glimpse into understanding the difference between what marketers wanted to say and what consumers understood.

From there, it was a series of marketing-related internships in high school and college. I spent almost seven years at Avenue A | Razorfish, starting in account management and digital media planning. After two years, I decided to make a move into their data and analytics group, which is how I found my inner data geek.

After that, I spent a number of years with WPP in their data strategy and data product startup, The Data Alliance, ultimately leading data strategy globally for the Colgate-Palmolive business.

I came to Havas Media in 2016 to lead data strategy in the US because the people here reminded me a lot of my early Avenue A days—hungry, fun, and willing to try new things. Havas really felt like a place where I could grow and have a meaningful impact. The growth I’ve seen here over the last three and a half years in size, clients, and work proves that I couldn’t have made a better choice.

Tell us a little about your new role at Havas?

I’m really excited to have joined the Global Data and Innovation team, and I think the role itself is a really fun one. I will be creating Havas Media’s MarTech (Marketing Technology) and data strategy, as well as developing MarTech playbooks for different kinds of clients at different maturity levels.

Our clients, existing and new, are increasingly asking us questions on these topics and I’ll be helping them think through how they, and we, leverage data and technology to drive more meaningful media experiences. This strategy and these playbooks will help us have meaningful client conversations and guide them to make the right decisions.

In addition to that, I’ll be building partnerships with the major global MarTech players to ensure that our strategic recommendations are concrete and can be implemented.

I’m really thrilled to be building on what I learned leading DBi in the US, adapting it to meet the needs of the broader global ecosystem, and applying it to Havas Media’s clients and new business opportunities.

"I don’t know if the job I’ll have in 2025 exists yet and that’s exciting to me"

You participated in the Femmes Forward initiative. What did you learn about yourself during the program and how has it helped you advance in your career?

Femmes Forward helped me most concretely in clarifying for myself where I wanted to take my career (and where I didn’t). It’s incredibly rare to have the time to concentrate on yourself and think through where you want to go in your career. To do so in an organized and systematic way is helpful beyond words. Femmes Forward gave me the time and the framework to do just that.

The program also enabled me to articulate how my own career goals could benefit the organization as a whole. Recent research published in Harvard Business Review shows that women actually ask for raises and promotions as often as men do but are less likely to get them. This program helped arm me with the tools to make my case. And, I’m lucky to be part of an organization that is committed to gender parity in leadership. I think that enabled me to take the next step in my career.

How important has mentorship been in your career development?

Mentorship can come in many forms. I was lucky enough to have great mentors in the form of my mom and stepfather who showed me, from a young age, what it meant to work hard and enjoy it. I was taught how to give a firm handshake at age six!

When it comes to professional mentors, mine are less formal. I have a network of people, including peers, former managers, and friends, who I go to with questions or to bounce around ideas. Our conversations are more than networking; they sometimes include work advice and discussions on where the industry is headed, and I always come away feeling like I learned something from these friendships that came about because of work.

What are your professional goals as you continue to grow and excel in this leadership role?

If someone had asked me five years ago to predict what role I’d be in now, I wouldn’t have been able to because my job didn’t exist five years ago. The same thing holds true moving forward—I don’t know if the job I’ll have in 2025 exists yet and that’s exciting to me. Our industry, especially in the areas of data and technology, is changing so rapidly, and I want to continue to grow with it while making it relevant and valuable to Havas Media and our clients. And I want to be known as a manager, and woman, who leads well and values the roles of her colleagues and team.

What is the best advice you have ever received? 

If you don’t ask, you won’t get. Figure out what you want and articulate it clearly. Make sure you are part of a supportive organization and be that support for your team. Have your facts and make the case, not just for you, but for the benefit of the business.

 

Sulaiman Beg is Havas' Director of Global Internal Communications. He has never eaten canned tuna fish.

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