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  • Jacqueline Karadjian

Behind The Scenes With Corporate Relations

My name is Jacqueline Karadjian and I currently hold Co-Chair of Corporate Relations position in Women in Business. Our committee is considered to be "low-key". Now, what do I mean by this? Well, we do not host events and we do not ask for participation from other committees. Most of the time, you really have no idea what we are doing.

Why is this? Well, our committee primarily focuses on making large events such as SYS and POW get sponsors and that is often unheralded work. Do you remember that NARS gift bag you won at SYS or that beautiful Steve Madden bag you carried out proudly? How about that gift basket filled with the perfect gifts? Well, that is Corporate Relations for you! Our team works very hard in securing these sponsors--gradually adding them on, one-by-one.

Let me take you through the process. Our spreadsheets are filled with hundreds and hundreds of sponsors for every sponsored event WIB hosts. The current committee will update the number of sponsors on these spreadsheets in accordance for each event and at the end of the year, we adjust them once more for the future Corporate Relations committee. Once our VP and Co-chair have reviewed the spreadsheet of sponsors, our VP, the wonderful Sabina Singh, assigns each of us a specific number of sponsors to research and contact by a certain deadline. We have a template that we approach each sponsor with, but we would customize it to the specific needs of each sponsor as we go along contacting each and every single one we researched.

Once we have finished all of our tasks, we play the waiting game. We hope that the companies we have reached out to, want to work with us as much as we would like to work with them! During this time, some of us will hear back with approval or declines and others may not receive replies at all. In addition, some of us would take the initiative to walk into stores and try to speak with a manager about WIB to try recruiting the company to work with us for our current or future events.

After about two weeks (based on how much time we have before the event), we would start the whole process again, starting with researching and then contacting sponsors. If we do not have enough time for our event, we prefer walk-ins as we do get results quicker. If we have time, we would each take on at least another 10 sponsors. By this time, we should have a solid 5-8 sponsors (hopefully more) between all of the CR committee members.

Next, we would finalize our sponsors list with the marketing team to thank the companies through WIB’s social media platforms. We then delegate the tasks to each CR members: some would coordinate with sponsors to pick up raffle items, some would update our spreadsheets, some would make the PowerPoint to thank our sponsors during our events, and others would prepare all the gifts so they would look appealing.

However, all of this hard work would have been for nought if we did not remind every single sponsor about our event as the date gets closer. We do not want them to forget and have any issues arise on the date of the event.

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