Executive Recruiter at SpaceX
What do you do as an Executive Recruiter?
I assist in defining executive positions, finding top talent, and hiring outstanding leaders. My role focuses on level instead of function, which means that I get to hire leaders across the company in every department. I have hired leaders in engineering, production, and business development. The positions I oversee have Director or VP titles, and will lead a team/department. I also assist with market intelligence and tracking trends in the industry that may impact hiring.
Why did you choose to major in Psychology and how has that affected your career thus far?
I have always loved Psychology and knew coming into college it is what I wanted to major in. I joined a UROP psychology lab in my first semester on campus. During my junior and senior years, I did research on leadership and how it affects an organization. This gave me a strong understanding of the different types of leaders.
What was your career path like?
I was hired at an executive search firm upon graduation as a researcher. I had great mentors that taught me about business and how to be a recruiter. After about two years, I was approached by SpaceX to join their in-house talent acquisition team to focus on executive recruiting. I am now responsible for the full lifecycle of recruiting, from creating to role all the way through offer letter and negotiations.
What advice do you have for students getting a degree in the UM Psychology Department who are considering your profession?
Try to do a business or HR internship. Research experience is a great way to help build analytical skills. Business courses are helpful as well.
How do you use your psychology undergraduate experience in your work?
I use it every day when I interview candidates!
What is the best career advice that you have received?
Take opportunities that scare you – If something is outside of your comfort zone and you do not know what to expect, it will create fear of the unknown. That fear is actually a great indicator the opportunity will be challenging and force you to grow.
What has contributed most to your career success?
Luck! I have worked hard of course, but I have also been extremely lucky with the opportunities that I have received. SpaceX contacted me about my position, but I would have never thought to apply myself. I was also in a situation where I could drop everything and move from Chicago to LA. I arrived in Los Angeles 2.5 weeks after the first outreach email from my boss. If you stay open to new opportunities and are ready to jump when you get a little bit of luck, you never know where you can end up!