Rotimi Ojo, BA’21
Rotimi currently resides in Toronto, Ontario, where he is working as a Market Development Representative for DocuSign. Here he shares his story of graduating university amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and moving towards the workforce with confidence.
Tell us about your role
As a Market Development Representative, I serve as the initial point of contact for prospective customers. My day to day involves cold-calling, outreach to prospects through e-mail, LinkedIn, etc. and working 1:1 with an Account Executive (AE). My AE & I strategize on focus areas for the month/quarter, and discuss industries to target based on business trends.
What are some of the key steps you took in the beginning of your career that you believe really helped to move your career forward?
I tried to remain open-minded to the value every opportunity brought to the table. When you have a growth mindset and eagerness to learn, every opportunity (whether it's a volunteer opportunity with a student club or a leadership opportunity) carries invaluable lessons that will come in handy down the road. Understanding this drove me to become involved in a number of different student communities on campus, without overthinking if/how it would support my career aspirations.
What opportunities arose from taking these first key steps?
I was lucky to meet so many inspiring student leaders and learn about how they made the most of their campus experiences. Each opportunity opened up a door to further involvement or gave me a better understanding of what I did or did not like in terms of a career. My network on campus also grew in a way that helped me in establishing a personal brand, too.
Describe a time when you felt unsure of how or where to begin your career journey.
In my first year I had absolutely no clue what I wanted to do, or where I wanted to be after school. Other than knowing what I wanted to major in, I had no clue of anything else. I decided to join the UBC Arts Co-op Program in an attempt to gain more clarity in terms of my potential career path. In the beginning of my third year, I landed a co-op position in sales with an NHL team in Ottawa. I had no interest in hockey, hadn't watched a single hockey game, and had no previous experience or interest in sales, but I felt it was the right move to make since my end goal was simply learning more about what exactly it is I wanted out of my career.
Do you have any advice for someone who is unsure of where to begin their career journey?
Recognize that self-development is accessible everywhere—in a student club, a friend group, a part-time job, or an entrepreneurship opportunity. I gained experiences on campus that I couldn't have guessed would be critical for success years later or even differentiate me in the interview process for a completely unrelated job. Having a positive mindset and recognizing that there's value even in places you couldn't imagine will allow you to make the most of opportunities presented to you.
It is completely fine, and, in fact, normal to have no clue what the end goal is. Trial and error, in many ways, is actually the best way to decide what you want out of your career. If you begin an opportunity and discover it's not the right fit for you—great! That's something you wouldn't have known if you didn't take that opportunity and the earlier you learn this in your career, the better. Make the most of every opportunity and the puzzle pieces itself together.
What tools and strategies did you use to combat feelings of doubt and enter the workforce with confidence?
Networking played such an important role throughout my career journey because it allowed me to witness and learn from the experiences of people years ahead of me. Talk to people in their final year about what they wish they did, reach out to people in industries/roles of interest to you, network with your professors. You deserve to navigate your campus and professional experience with the support of people around you, and that support is readily available as long as you ask for it.