Stax Spotlight - Nikki Shah, Senior Associate - Boston

Nikki Shah, Senior Associate - Boston

You were a Northeastern University co-op at Stax your Fall 2018 semester, what piqued your interest during your co-op to apply for a full-time position?
Being a co-op at Stax is such a great experience because you’re staffed on a wide variety of projects as a resource to support the research and thinking behind each project over the six-month program. As a co-op, you truly have the opportunity to bring value to your team from day one. I saw that, even though I was still a student, my opinion was heard and valued – the firm really practices what they preach in terms of being non-hierarchical and a meritocracy. The dynamic work environment combined with the positive culture was what drew me in to join full-time.

Describe your career progression at Stax, your current role, and what you have learned over the last two years?
I joined Stax full-time after I graduated in the associate role and was promoted to senior associate last summer. As a senior associate, I’m involved with gathering, synthesizing, and interpreting data (whether phone, web, or secondary) for our projects, often managing other associates or co-ops.

Since starting full-time, I’ve been on over 20 projects, with industries ranging from legal software to boutique fitness centers to sprinkler systems. A personal favorite industry to dive into was for an app that advertises craft beer to consumers, where I got to learn about all the behind-the-scenes channel partnerships and business models for craft breweries.

Other than the actual industries I’ve learned about, the main thing I’ve learned during my two years at Stax has been how to work with so many different types of teams and people. When you're reporting to and managing different people every few weeks, you have to learn how to pivot working styles not only for the new client and industry you’re working on, but also the new people you’re working with internally – which is not something that’s common at other companies.

How has Stax helped you grow, expand, and succeed in your career?
My mentors – both formal and informal – have taught me so much about strategic thinking, research, project management, and people management, skills which I will carry throughout my career. Through my monthly meetings with my formal mentor, I always have a clear vision, defined goals, and an understanding where I stand at the firm, which has allowed me to form my own development plan. Whenever I have questions or doubts on what I am doing, she is my go-to resource and is able to provide me with valuable advice on how to improve my working style.

Beyond the formal mentorship program, the Stax rotating team structure also gives me exposure to various project leads and informal mentors across levels who guide me on consulting best practices, as well as overall career goals.

Why would you advise prospective candidates to join Stax?
Stax is the perfect place to learn and grow very quickly. You will be given opportunities and get access to projects and people that you wouldn't get anywhere else, even if you’re fresh out of school. The fact that it’s a supportive work environment with a great and fun culture just ties the bow.

FUN FACTS:

What are you currently binge-watching or reading?
I’m currently reading the Book of Delights by Ross Gay and Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala, and making my way through Mad Men (for the first time)!

What music is on your phone?
A healthy mix of Taylor Swift, musical theatre favorites, throwbacks, and sad Bop Pop songs.

What is one food that you cannot resist?
I am notorious for never straying from lobster ravioli when I eat at any North End restaurant.

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