Every good thing must come to an end. Because Bandalier makes the most of the young and innovative talent pool of our local colleges, Binghamton University and SUNY Broome, we sadly have to say our goodbyes when graduation rolls around every May. This past weekend we had 8 graduates who will be moving on to the next chapter of their lives. Here are their stories:
When Melanie Messinger started at Bandalier last August she had experience working with CRMs and data analysis but making calls was a new experience for her. With Bandalier’s intensive Inside Sales training program led by Matt Scanlon her transition to client-facing work was made much more seamless.
“I think the training was great...they [did] a great job helping me through everything and making it a learning experience.”
Now that her time at Bandalier has come to a close, Melanie hopes to directly apply those skills to her next job. She plans to enter a career in sales, media, or advertising. But before she left Binghamton, there’s one more thing she had to do: give the commencement speech at one of BU’s Harpur College graduations.
“I thought I had a message I could give to the graduating class. I do love Binghamton, and I thought it was worth a shot since Binghamton has given me so much over the years.”
Her message? One of hope, growth, and accepting the unpredictability of life.
“We all came here with a certain goal in mind, but you kind of find yourself along the way and sometimes that goal changes, and it’s essentially on you to figure out what you want.”
When Elise Berk first started working at Bandalier in September of 2017 she was one of the very first people to join the team. She wanted to be a part of a startup, but instead got to help build that startup from the ground floor.
“It’s been really cool [seeing Bandalier grow] because when we first started there were like 5 people in a completely different office, much smaller, and it was way less organized. Being here [since the beginning] has really helped me see how much growth in such a short period of time Bandalier has experienced.”
With a degree in Business Administration and a double concentration in Management Information Systems and Marketing under her belt, Elise will be moving on to a full-time job after graduation. She will be working at Protiviti, a management consulting agency in New York City.
When she leaves, Elise will take with her many of the skills she learned here at Bandalier: “how to properly and effectively communicate with both clients and coworkers, how to talk to a boss, communication.”
As she leaves the startup culture Bandalier has cultivated, Elise says what she will miss the most is the people.
“[I love] the open easygoing environment that really made it comfortable to ask any questions. Everyone was extremely responsive to the employees and would always ask for their opinions which was pretty cool.”
When Derek Nash first started at Bandalier he wanted to use his time here to figure out whether he wanted to pursue a career in sales. After about a year of experience and a bachelor’s degree in Management Information Systems under his belt, Derek now knows that sales is exactly what he wants to do.
Derek hopes to move back to Boston to work for a tech company, much like the clients Bandalier represents. In many ways, his experience here will directly transfer to his next job.
“I’m applying for a lot of sales jobs so the sales experience [here] has definitely helped a lot. I’ve definitely learned a lot about what goes into people buying things.”
Halle Preston will be leaving Binghamton University this May with a dual degree in Philosophy Politics and Law as well as Business Administration with a concentration in Management Information Systems. She will then move on to work as an International Trade and Customs Consultant at PWC.
Halle says there are many things she will miss about Bandalier.
“I think the work environment is just so casual and makes work seem fun, it’s really nice to come in and not feel stressed out that I have to be here. I think it’s been a really important experience to work at a startup to see how a business can be created…you can tell it’s a work in progress and it’s growing. I think it’s really important to see how a business can become what Bandalier is becoming.”
And while Halle won’t be working in a sales capacity at her next position, many of the skills she learned here will transfer.
“I think [making calls] honestly helped me improve my sales technique, and I learned to talk to people and connect with them in a way that makes them receptive, not just in sales but in general.”
With a B.A. in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing, Maddie Lowe plans to spend the summer working for Bandalier before continuing her studies with Binghamton University’s fast track MBA program.
Whatever she moves on to do with her business degree, Maddie has a wide array of sales expertise that she will take with her. While she started with Bandalier as an Inside Sales Associate, she was soon moved to the data analytics side of the organization.
As she moves on in her career, Maddie credits Bandalier with many of the changes she has experienced during her professional growth.
“I would say now with my analytics background I pay very close attention to detail. I have very good Excel skills now, which is important to have, as well as knowledge about sales in general. Every company does sales one way or another so I think it’s going to be vital to any position that I have.”
Maddie says her favorite thing about Bandalier is the people.
“I think everybody would say the same thing: the people, the company culture are my favorite things. Walking into work, having everybody say “hi” to you. And Matt and Jeremy are great, I’ve never had better bosses, they’re really great people and they want to see you succeed no matter what, so that’s awesome. I’m really gonna miss the people once I’m gone.”
Now that she has received her bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies with a concentration in Policy and Law, Kim Henry plans to take a gap year before enrolling in law school.
After about 8 months interning for Bandalier, Kim knows there is one thing she will miss (besides the complimentary coffee): “the friendly co-workers and friends that I met along the way!”
While a career as a lawyer is very different from the sales experience she has gained at Bandalier, Kim has gained some valuable skills that she will carry on with her.
“I have learned a lot about time management. At Bandalier, I had a ton of tasks that divided up my time. As a result, I learned how to manage my time well and it's a skill I excelled at and will definitely take with me not only to future jobs but also to my personal life!”
Following her graduation with a degree in Environmental Studies with a concentration in Ecosystems, Monica Benjovsky will be spending the summer working at Martha’s Vineyard. As a seasonal Summer Ranger she will be able to channel her love for nature into her work, making sure that the parks are well maintained.
While outsourced sales is a far cry from environmental policy or outdoors stewardship, Monica got a brand new, broadly applicable skill set at Bandalier.
“I’ve definitely learned about sales even though I didn’t do [client facing work]. I learned a lot about how to outreach to companies: the wording of sentences and emails. It was a good educational experience and something I never thought I would do.”
While Monica never thought that sales would be for her, she says her first interview with the company changed her mind. Since then her co-workers have helped Monica hone her communication skills.
“They’re very friendly and welcoming, and they’re just very open to questions and open to helping you whenever you need help.”
After I graduate this May with my Master of Arts in Teaching I plan to spend the summer as a Marketing Intern for HarperCollins Publishing while working remotely for Bandalier.
While I never thought I would work in sales, I heard about this fast-growing startup and thought it would be a cool experience. I never thought I would come to love working here so much!
I started out this February making calls for a POS software company, then moved on to researching prospects and writing email openings for another client, and now I’m a Multi-Channel Specialist (meaning I will be working for multiple clients doing outreach through methods besides your typical call and email sequence).
Because I’ve had the opportunity to work in so many roles, I have gained many skills that will transfer over into my future career, whether it be in teaching, book publishing, or marketing.
Making calls helped me gain confidence and hone my skills of persuasion. Researching companies and writing emails helped me to sharpen my writing skills and ability to identify the unique features of every company I come across. I have gained invaluable communication skills here.
My favorite thing about working at Bandalier is that there is so much room for growth here, and our bosses really care about our needs and our interests. I told Jeremy and Matt that I’m really interested in marketing and then they found opportunities for me to write blog posts and work as a Multi-Channel Specialist. There are so many people here who want to see you succeed!
Congratulations and best of luck to our 2019 graduates. We’re sad to see you go, but we hope to see you flourish as you each take your individual paths to greatness!
By Alex Cruz-Jimenez