Mariana Muruzabal WG’15 interned at Eleven James in New York, NY

2014-2015 Sutton Entrepreneurial Intern Fellow

During the summer I was a Marketing and Business Development intern at Eleven James. The company is a membership club where members receive a new luxury watch every two months. Mainly targeted at men, the club also offers other services which include events, and partnerships with other luxury brands. I was involved in developing the customer loyalty program, doing marketing research and re-designing the customer acquisition process. The company consisted of 7 employees and is experiencing growth in their membership base.

How did you find the position?
I found my summer internship through career path. One of the employees of the company was a Wharton alumni so she wanted to recruit someone from Wharton for the summer. She joined the start up right from the beginning and was invested in bringing MBA students for summer.

What was your motivation for working at a start-up this summer?
I chose to work for a start up this summer because I was coming from a very corporate background and wanted to develop a different kind of skillset. Before school I was at Coca-Cola, my job was very interesting and I learnt a lot from but for the summer I decided I wanted to try something completely different. I was used to structure and predictability in my job and working a start up helped me be more proactive and find ways in which I could add value to the company without having a very clear job role description. I was also interested in the luxury goods industry and wanted to have exposure to Marketing and Business Development.

What advice would you give to students interested in working at a start-up this summer?
My advice would be to understand what kind of start-up you want you to work for, what size, and in which way you can add value to the company. In many cases it will be up to the intern to propose interesting projects and carry them out so having a clear picture of what can be done from the beginning is helpful. Although a start-up is great in the sense that you get exposure to the whole business and see every area it many times means that you can get dragged into tasks which might not be what you were looking for. I think that coming into the internship with a clear picture of what you want to get out of it and how you are going to do it will ensure you have a productive summer.