Saying Yes to Success

Dorri McWhorter (BBA ’95)
Jenna Mueller’s willingness to get involved helps build a foundation for leadership.

Jenna Mueller (BBA ’14) raises her hand for everything. While it can be a challenge to continuously get involved in new projects and take on more work, Mueller knows that her eagerness to take every opportunity got her where she is today.

Mueller recently completed BP’s rotational program after working the last three years in sales, marketing, supply, and finance.

“You’re encouraged to move around and learn about different parts of the business,” she says of BP’s rotational program. “We’re such an integrated and cross-functional company that having experience in different areas ultimately makes you a better employee wherever you end up.”

The program allowed Mueller to gain a wide breadth of experiences and form lasting relationships across departments.

“Relationships are the heartbeat of any successful organization,” she says. “Genuine passion and concern for others is how you ultimately set yourself up to be successful. I’ve learned that about myself throughout my rotations.”

Mueller is in her element when she is building relationships and developing talent. Her knack for this kind of leadership formed as a student when she managed the Wisconsin School of Business student magazine, b.Line.

“I took an organization that was, at the time, really small, built it into this larger organization, and learned how to delegate,” she says. “I saw how my actions had the ability to either motivate people or demotivate people, and I learned how to positively impact somebody’s experience.”

These skills continue to help Mueller lead with energy.

“I use what I learned about relationship-building at b.Line in my projects at work,” she says. “It can manifest in the form of improving the customer experience for clients and thinking about how best to reach and secure a consumer base. But I also use those skills to mentor colleagues and fellow Badgers at BP.”

Balance is key for Mueller to put her skills to use and take opportunities outside of the oil and gas industry. Mueller dedicates her free time to volunteering with the Junior League of Chicago. Her most recent project, Blessings in a Backpack, helps provide meals for low-income children in Mueller’s neighborhood. She spends a few hours every two weeks writing encouraging notes to students and putting together bags of food for them to take home on the weekends.

“It’s really powerful for me to be involved and to remember that, while it’s important to be successful at work, it’s equally important to give back.”

Mueller says she first learned the importance of learning how to balance multiple projects and activities at WSB.

Relationships are the heartbeat of any successful organization. Genuine passion and concern for others is how you ultimately set yourself up to be successful.

Jenna Mueller (BBA ’14),
Sales operations coordinator, BP

“I learned not only how to be strong academically, but I recognized the importance of also having extracurriculars—which is where I got most of my experience that led to internships, and eventually a full-time job,” she says. “Things are always going to be busy, but having a focus on learning how to balance your life will help you make sure you can still excel in school, be a leader of an organization, and get involved in your community in other ways.”

A focus on balance doesn’t rule out room for growth, however. Mueller hopes to reach leadership positions both in Junior League and at BP, and continue strengthening her relationship-building skills.

“I’m hoping to advance at BP and get to a point where I can help manage other people’s careers and help them succeed,” she says. “I want to serve as a mentor to my coworkers and be a good role model of a successful, strong woman that other people can look up to.”

Catch up on fellow Wisconsin School of Business alumni. View Now »

Want to add your own class note? Submit Note »

Frank McGehee (MBA ’99) and Marie McGehee (MBA ’99)

work in the NYC area. Frank is the head of Global CRM for the music streaming company TIDAL and Marie is director of corporate communications for Verizon. In November Frank was elected to a three-year term on the five-person Maplewood, New Jersey Township Committee. Their daughter, Madison, is an aspiring actress performing in several off-Broadway shows and showcases. More Class Notes »

Jonathan Horne<br>(MBA/JD ’13)

launched a new venture capital fund, The Idea Fund of La Crosse, in February. The fund is actively seeking pre-revenue companies in Wisconsin for investment. Prior to the Idea Fund, he worked in the investment banking division of JP Morgan in New York. More Class Notes »

Cara Lombardo<br />(BBA ’10, MAcc ’11)

left her job as an auditor at PwC to become a journalist. Her accounting training has proved useful in her reporting. She and accounting classmate Matthew Brody (MAcc ’11) are planning a 2018 wedding in Madison. More Class Notes »