Jessica O. has all the charm, grit, and tenacity that the New York office is known for, and it’s no surprise since she’s a native New Yorker herself. She has helped local business owners across the country and is currently helping those in her own backyard in Brooklyn. She is a perennial Yelp Guide, finding time to mentor new hires throughout each month in between nightly sessions training in Krav Maga and Jiu Jitsu. (We told you she was gritty!) She has an extraordinarily bright future ahead of her and is currently entering her second year in Yelp Sales.
- What drew you to a job at Yelp initially?
After leaving my last job, I had a really clear sense of what I needed at work and in my career. I made the decision that sales was a good path for me, but sales can have a bit of a bad rap! I decided that if I was going to go into sales, it had to be at a company that provides a service that affects my daily life; I could only sell something I’d recommend to my own mom, and I had to do my job surrounded by the best people. Check, check, and check!
- What is a typical day in the office like for you?
When I come into work in the morning, I have to set my strategy for the day and ultimately find the best ways to reach the businesses I think would be the most successful on Yelp. Surprise, surprise — business owners don’t always agree. Every once in awhile though, you win just one person over and it’s so addictive! One day, one of my clients asked his Account Manager where he could write a great review of me, and it made my whole day!
- How does this job fit your skill set and what are you most excited about as you continue to grow in your role and at Yelp?
On this job you spend a lot of your day speaking to people, and your ability to figure out how to connect to them is key. As an extrovert/empath love child, I thought that would be the easiest part, but since clients aren’t seeing your face or reading your expressions, what you say and how you say it has never been as important. Every day I have to learn more and more about the Yelp platform and my clients’ industries and communities so I can be an expert on addressing their needs and concerns. I love the opportunity that gives me to be constantly learning.
- Where do you find a sense of community at Yelp?
I like to find community, especially when I’m in new places. Early on, I got involved in Diverse Burst, which has been a great way to find people who care about actively creating an environment where everyone gets to feel welcome and heard. I’m also a Yelp Guide lucky enough to be paired with rising stars who are now also Yelp Guides. We’re a work family and that has been super cool to be a part of. Outside of that, I’ve done leadership training programs to help me think more about the career I want to build here, and I help out at as many recruiting events as I can, which is always fun.
- What’s your favorite thing about living in New York City? What are you up to when you’re not at work?
If I’m not begging someone for the millionth time to come to a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu class with me after work, then I’m responding to a million texts to come out for dinner, dancing, or drinks! I was born and raised in this city and love that I can never know every nook and cranny of it. There’s always another place to try and another thing to see, and those things are never more than a subway ride away.