A Passion For Building Relationships Pays Off for Twitter Executive: Sarah Rosen ’02 BSBA (Marketing)
Jan. 28, 2019
Sarah Rosen ’02 BSBA (Marketing)
Sarah Rosen, with her casual conversation style and engaging energy, is one of those people that you can’t help but instantly like.
And as head of Twitter’s U.S. Entertainment Partnerships, these traits come in handy. “A huge part of my job is relationship management, both internally and externally,” she says. “So I’m passionate about cultivating relationships. It’s part of the reason my job is different and exciting every day.”
Rosen’s road to Twitter began during her junior year at Eller, when she decided to find an internship in Hollywood. “I had zero connections and zero understanding of what that meant,” she muses. “I just thought Hollywood and entertainment were cool and surely there was an internship there for me.” Determined, Rosen felt there just had to be a way in.
Google searches didn’t yield much back then, so Rosen conducted her own unique style of research, flipping over her DVDs to see which studio produced the film, and searching for internship programs on their websites. After applying to “every movie studio in LA,” Rosen finally got her reward: Her resume was pulled off the fax machine at Fox Searchlight by a University of Arizona alum. “She called and offered me the chance to interview for the internship and I was able to earn a spot in the program,” says Rosen.
The program included a robust speaker and networking series for the interns. Rosen leveraged these opportunities to cultivate relationships. “I’d send emails afterward to the executives who spoke, to thank them and ask for time to connect one on one,” she explains. After graduating from UA, taking some time to travel and then moving to LA, Rosen reached out to some of those same executives. Ultimately, she landed a job back at Fox, where she spent five years in field publicity and marketing, followed by a short stint at the National Basketball Association and nearly six years at Viacom, where she rose to senior director of partner management and program development. Rosen joined Twitter’s Entertainment Partnerships team in 2014.
An ability to build and maintain relationships has been a key ingredient to Rosen’s success. She presses on the importance of developing good social skills, sharing that hers were fine-tuned at Eller. “The University of Arizona is big and you have to learn to navigate and find your own path to success, both socially and academically. It’s not just what you learn in the classroom that prepares you for life beyond college.”
Rosen encourages people starting their career to request informational interviews. Most senior executives are impressed with young people who have the initiative and drive to ask, she says, and will take the time to meet with you because they want to “pay it forward.” Rosen leads with this in mind when managing her own team at Twitter. “I want people to feel they like they have had positive experiences with me, and that I support them in their career,” she says. “I’ve always said that success is a combination of hard work, luck and timing. You can’t control the last two things but you can control the first.”