Manager, Video Products at Comcast NBCUniversal

Why did you decide to come to Leeds?Kumar Kothari
I was working as an engineer in the automotive industry outside of Detroit and came to realize that I really didn't like the super technical parts of my job and wanted to make a pivot to a more strategic, business-oriented role. I wanted to make this transition without having to take a step back in my career and start in an entry-level capacity. So going to get my MBA was a way for me to break into a new role in a new industry while also getting the academic credentials that would allow me to start higher on the organizational ladder.

What is one thing you learned at Leeds that you will never forget?
I cannot overstate the value of building strong relationships, both personally and professionally.

Tell us about a particular professor or mentor that influenced you while you were at Leeds.
Jay Waddell was my professor for New Product Development, which gave me my first exposure into Product Management and Design Thinking. The class was great because it gave both the conceptual knowledge of how to build great products but also the tactical tools you need to perform that role in the workplace.

Where has life taken you since you graduated Leeds?
After graduation, I joined Dish Network as a Product Manager, where I worked on their core TV/Entertainment products. This was such a cool role, as I got to work on high-impact, high-visibility product experiences like sports betting integrations with DraftKings, MyAccount sales funnel optimization, and a voice remote partnership with Google Assistant.
In December of last year, I joined Comcast NBCUniversal as a Manager of Video Products, working on their Xfinity brand. This was my first opportunity to have direct reports and manage a team, which has been a whirlwind, but in the best possible way!

What is one piece of advice/best practice that has stuck with you throughout your career?
When most people think about getting an MBA, they think about what they're going to learn in the classroom. Which is true, you'll learn a lot. But the best piece of advice that I'd give is really just a reminder that there is a TON of value to be found outside of the classroom as well — whether that's building relationships with your classmates, going to networking events, doing mock interviews, coffee dates to learn about new career paths, etc... That's where the real value is.

What advice would you give to anyone interested in pursuing a career in your professional field?
Wrap your skillset, personal experiences, and professional experiences into a coherent and compelling story that describes why you're the best person for this role.

What do you miss most about Boulder?
It's a toss-up between half-off sushi at Japango and grabbing drinks with friends at Rayback Collective.

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September 2021