Name: Jamie Rothfeld
Job Title and Description: Manager, Corporate Communications, Hyatt
What does your current job entail? Is there such a thing as a typical day?
Jamie Rothfeld: I like to say that my job requires me to wear many different hats and be a bit of an expert in everything! I handle the public relations support for the Andaz brand, Park Hyatt brand and for Hyatt’s corporate responsibility efforts. I also deal with corporate executive visibility, corporate reputation, crisis management and internal communications.
I think it’s safe to say there is never a dull moment at the office and there is no such thing as a typical day. I can go in with a full idea of what my day should look like and then it can get turned upside down—but that is all part of the fun!
What is the best part of your job?
JR: I am a true believer that the way you feel about a job is defined by the people that surround you. I am extremely lucky to have a fantastic team of corporate communications experts (that all happen to be women!) who provide me with support, advice and collaboration—all which help when it comes to my professional growth. Plus, we laugh and have fun all day at the office—it doesn’t get much better.
I would also say that traveling is the other best part of my job. I recently got back from a trip to Vienna to support the opening of Park Hyatt Vienna, and there is nothing better than traveling to amazing places, learning about new cultures, visiting our hotels and meeting our colleagues around the world who inspire me every day!
What was your first entry-level job in your field and how did you get it?
JR: My first entry-level job was at a large-sized public relations firm based in Chicago where I worked on a variety of consumer-focused accounts. I had interned at the firm’s sister agency in Chicago right after I graduated college, and right when my internship came to a close, a spot opened at the other firm and they recommended me for the job. Talk about perfect timing!
What is one thing you wish you knew about your industry when you first started out that you know now?
JR: I wish I had known just how fast paced this industry is! You really need to be quick on your feet, and if you turn your head for a minute, you might miss something. It’s important to be quick, nimble and flexible (and you must drink a lot of coffee!).
Who is one person who changed your professional life for the better?
JR: He may not know it, but my dad has really been an inspiration to me throughout my professional career. At a young age, my dad founded his own business, which is still thriving 30 years later. His determination, passion and unwavering work ethic have really inspired me and have taught me how to have a successful and fulfilling career. My dad is also really great when it comes to giving advice on the corporate and business world, and I find myself calling him weekly to get his opinion on potential issues or conflicts.
What words of do you find most valuable?
JR: One of my colleagues has a quote up on her desk that says, “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?” I use this as a way to think about my growth here at Hyatt. In order to excel and experience professional growth, it is important to continually take risks, push yourself and do the things that might scare you. With big risks come big rewards, and I think this type of outlook will make for a career filled with challenges, opportunities and excitement.
What is one mistake you made along the way and what did you learn from it?
JR: How much time do you have? I have made so many mistakes throughout my career, whether it be not knowing an important person in the industry or sending an email to the wrong person (that can get you in big trouble!). But, the important thing is that I have learned from all of my mistakes and am better because of it. Also, when you make a mistake, learn from it and get over it quickly. There is no sense in focusing on a negative when you can turn it into a positive.
What has been the most surreal moment of your career thus far?
JR: One of the most surreal moments I’ve had thus far in my career was securing a cover story for our CEO. This past June, he appeared on the cover of a very prominent luxury sales trade magazine, and the story covered his journey as CEO of Hyatt, the great milestones and accomplishments he has had since he joined the company and his hopes and aspirations for the company’s future. Seeing a big story I pitched come to fruition and hearing positive feedback straight from our CEO was a truly memorable and humbling moment that I won’t soon forget!
What do you look for when considering hiring someone?
JR: When hiring somebody, I think it is most important to get a gut feeling about a candidate. While experience, recommendations and expertise are all extremely important and should be considered, the most important thing to look for is that intangible good feeling you get about a candidate. It’s important for a person to have positive energy, and to me, it’s most important that a person can jive and easily work with the rest of your team.
What advice would you give to a 20-something with similar aspirations?
JR: For someone who is looking to explore a career in public relations, I would say that perseverance is critical. The public relations field can be very tough and competitive, so it’s important to work through the challenges that this industry can present. I promise that it is a truly rewarding, fun and exciting career that will keep you on your toes and make you excited to come to work every day.
I would also say to never give up and to always work hard for what you want. I couldn’t be happier with where I am today, and hard work, passion and drive has gotten me here. Never give up and success is yours!