Sarah Merz DeVoll, president  & CEO at FC Organizational Products spoke with David Eccles business students to share her insights into the business world.

DeVoll, first-generation German South-Korean, was taught from an early age, not only to reach for great success, but to achieve it. At 22 years old she was already an analyst at Booz Allen Hamilton, creating reports and delivering her analyses to senior staff. She realized in order to move ahead, it was time to get her graduate degree and she began her graduate studies at Kellogg School of Management.

In graduate school, DeVoll learned the invaluable importance of internships, as she was able to explore different areas of interest, which aided her future career choices. During this time she also had the chance to strengthen her resume, improve her interview skills, and refine her presentation skills.

Her tips to become more marketable after graduation include:

  • Get Involved. Student clubs, networking groups, and student services are all great ways to increase your leadership skills, which employers seek in a candidate.
  • Get out of your comfort zone. Attend presentations offered by your college and be sure to introduce yourself to the speakers.
  • Start at the bottom. Once you’ve identified your career path, be willing to start at an entry-level position and take on more responsibility to prove that you’re the one who can make an impact in an organization.

DeVoll says she has learned many important things as she’s moved up the ladder in business.  She shared five leadership lessons to help students get on the fast track to success.