Diana Kattan (W’12) interned at TicketLeap – a Wharton VIP alumni company – in Philadelphia, PA

THE 2010-2011 AMBASSADOR OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Wharton Entrepreneurship Advisory Board Intern Fellowship recipient:

How did you find the position?

Through references, but ultimately, by sending my resume and cover letter directly to TicketLeap’s Marketing Manager, Lauren Beley.

 

What was your motivation for working at a start-up this summer?

I run my own start-up and I wanted to gain some insight into the dynamics of a growing small company. Moreover, I hoped to learn marketing tactics used by small companies and leverage them for my own start-up.

 

What advice would you give to students interested in working at a start-up this summer?

Don’t be afraid to ask for more meaningful work.

 

About the Summer Experience
G
etting things done:
It was already late March and I still hadn’t finalized my summer plans. All I knew was that I didn’t want to waste my time sitting at home, watching TV. I was at the Venture Initiation Program’s Networking Event, when I asked Megan Mitchell, one of the VIP program coordinators if she was aware of any internship opportunities over the summer. Megan advised me to talk with Michael Aronson, Managing Partner at MentorTech Ventures and who was also at the event. I spoke with Mr. Aronson and e-mailed him my resume. He then sent me the names of several start-ups he funds near Philadelphia. From the list, TicketLeap caught my attention the most and I decided to apply for the company’s University Internship Program. I was interviewed by Lauren, met Chris Stanchak, TicketLeap’s CEO and a VIP alum, and got the job. I finally had something useful to do over the summer.

The Start-Up Internship Learning Experience:
I was very nervous when my internship began because I didn’t know what to expect or what would be expected of me. I remember feeling a little out of place on my first day because I got to the TicketLeap office dressed in business casual. Silly me, start-up culture is more laid back. Everyone at the office was very friendly, which quickly made me feel more comfortable. One of the first things I noticed when I got to TicketLeap was that, aside from a few conference rooms and three offices, which were mostly kept open, everyone was pretty much integrated on the same floor. Yes, each department had its own area; however, there were no physical divisions among departments. Another thing I noticed was that the company’s mission statement was put up in large print to remind everyone at the office about the meaning of their work. It was very motivating to see the concepts we learned in management class about flat organizational structures and the importance of the mission statement applied in a real world situation. This allowed me to understand more about the dynamics among different departments in a company.

I interned at TicketLeap for 6 weeks. These were crucial moments in the company’s history, as the company was preparing to launch its social media-oriented ticketing platform early August. Being at TicketLeap for the launch was an incredible experience. Everyone at the office was very excited to see their hard work pay off. This excitement was obvious at the weekly Friday afternoon company meetings, in which, all the company staff members come together and, with some jokes here and there, report on new developments within each department. Moreover, these meetings are representative of TicketLeap’s start-up culture, which help make the company a very fun place to work at. On the Friday before the launch of the new platform, Chris opened the meeting with very motivational words that made the rest of the TicketLeap team feel part of something meaningful and inspired me to later apply his leadership style at my own company.

My Work:
While at TicketLeap, two things I worked on were finding potential new leads and writing for the TicketLeap blog. Finding leads was tedious work. I spent hours searching the Internet for potential clients in various, specific target segments, such as community theaters and Oktoberfest festivals. Even though I didn’t necessarily enjoy this, I learned how small companies go about scouting clients. Writing for the TicketLeap blog was more fun. My task was to pick an event whose tickets were being sold through the TickeLeap platform and feature a post about it. I never imagined I’d ever be good at writing blog posts, however, I proved myself wrong. I wrote several entries on various events, ranging from a home show to a tattoo show. I was always excited for the opportunity to show my creativity with these posts. Here’s the first entry I wrote:

Play detective on your next date night

 

It’s exactly 7:30 pm and you brought your date to the ravishing dinner party Tiffany has planned for her husband’s, Ted Sterling, 50th birthday. You are all sitting down at the dinner table enjoying a delicious meal when all of a sudden you hear a chilling scream coming from one of the back rooms. Puzzled, you all run to the library… only to find a dead body lying on the embroidered carpet.

 

The culprit: Colonel Mustard, in the library, with the candlestick.

 

Ever dreamed of playing Clue on your next date night?  Well if you happen to be in Escondido, California, on a Friday or Saturday night from August to October, be sure to take a date to Mikki’s Restaurant.

Peggy Sue Productions will be showcasing “It’s My Party and I’ll Die If I Want To” dinner theater.  The dinner party will turn into a night of fun and thrilling mystery as the Mall Guard discovers a crime was committed. If you help with the investigation, you’ll have a chance to win an awesome prize.

So, if you’re tired of the regular dinner and a movie date, be sure to get your tickets now for this who dunnit dinner theater before they run out. Tickets are $32.50 and include a meal choice of beef, chicken, fish or vegetarian.

 

Dates are now through October
Mikki’s Restaurant, 1639 E Valley Parkway, Escondido, CA 92027   Buy tickets now.