Another original JSAer, this month we meet Vanessa Eixman, JSA’s Executive Vice President of Business Development and Account Strategy. Read on to learn about her impressive tenure in the telecom industry, her family’s passion for college football and more!
If you could describe JSA with three words, what would they be and why?
Full of heart
JSA has some of the most talented, hard working people that I have ever worked with. I’m very blessed to have been a part of this fabulous team for the past 12 years, starting out as JSA’s fourth employee to now, we are a team of over 30 people. JSA has changed in so many amazing ways over the years, but what has remained the same is our team’s passion for delivering the very best to each of our clients AND passion for helping each other grow.
It’s been such an amazing journey to see how far we have come: from hiring very driven and talented people; to all of the resources and tools that we’ve adopted; to the platforms we have built to further promote our clients such as JSA TV, Data Movers Podcast and TNN; to creating this wonderful space for our team to be challenged, learn new things and shine.
The most amazing part about JSA is how all of that somehow gets channeled into our customer relationships. I truly believe that it’s the ‘heart’ of each JSA’er that makes our company so unique. It’s the passion, energy and dedication to delivering value and working alongside our customers that in turn, ultimately contribute towards helping our clients achieve their objectives and goals.
Our team is very invested in our clients’ success and I believe that is hard to find – especially in this ever-changing industry and fast-paced world that we live in.
I’m so grateful to be working alongside such amazing people every day.
Prior to joining JSA, you worked in business development for several top telecom companies. Do you find that experience and knowledge base helpful when developing marketing strategies for JSA clients?
Absolutely, I have been in the telecom industry since graduating from college and have always loved the fast-paced, dynamic environment it provides. I went from selling and supporting point to point data and frame relay networks and having to explain what the ‘cloud’ was over and over (and over!) 🙂 to helping clients market their global hybrid cloud, multicloud and Edge platforms.
I think my experience starting off as a service rep for a large telecom company also helped me understand all facets of the sales process. As I moved into direct sales roles, I knew that it’s so important to collaborate with your internal teams and how collectively, you all contribute to the client’s success.
Lastly, while working in business development for a cloud computing company, I was able to travel and tour a ton of data centers as we identified the facilities where we wanted to deploy our cloud nodes. We hired JSA to help launch our new cloud platform, and I was able to work directly with Jaymie and Karissa for almost a year before coming onboard as a JSA’er. I think coming to JSA as a former client, and my experience in telecom sales/service, gives me the unique perspective of how to literally ‘think like a client’!
No two clients are alike and JSA gives me the opportunity to work across the spectrum from carriers to data centers to subsea cable providers. This past year has shown the world how critical our industry is to global communications. It was amazing to see our customers’ dedication to ensuring that critical communication networks stayed up and running and how our industry came together to solve challenges and ensure people could work, play and learn from home.
You have been involved in a number of M&A announcements with JSA clients over the years. Can you share some insight on how you approach these types of announcements?
M&As are a big part of our industry and anyone that has ever worked with me knows that I love M&A day. Our industry is pretty tight knit and feels small at times in part due to all the consolidation that has happened over the years. I’ve worked at several companies that went through various mergers, so having that perspective I think helps me to understand what our clients have to contend with for their own M&A transactions.
Even over this past year, when so much in the world was up in the air, the data center and telecom industry had many record deals. One of the things that transpired from the pandemic is that it made most companies reshape, reimage – and just do things differently. The marketplace had to find ways to be more competitive, pursue new and disruptive growth strategies, and all of that also affected M&A transactions. Companies were forced to think outside the box and pivot quickly. Covid accelerated not only companies’ digital transformation, but also dealmakers’ needs to create more optionality for their organizations.
We are fortunate to be in a position to help our clients elevate themselves in the marketplace, garner more exposure, drive more value and command influence. JSA is in a great position to help our clients navigate through all the scenarios and ensure that the M&A not only gets a lot of media attention but that everything goes smoothly in the pre-planning and post-integration process. During a M&A deal, our clients have a big deliverable, which is to educate their customers, prospects, partners, media and marketplace of the value that will come from their M&A transaction.
JSA can be a true resource for them and also be a reassuring partner for them throughout the whole process.
How do you like to unwind after a long day of work? What kind of hobbies and activities do you enjoy in your free time?
My family is very sporty and we love working out, wakeboarding, and playing golf / tennis. My two kids are good golfers – so it’s so fun to get outside and play on a pretty course…and in Texas, we can luckily play golf almost year round. We are also all big skiers and enjoy trekking to Colorado every year. And did I mention football yet? We are huge college football fans and have been tailgating at Texas A&M with the same group for almost 15 years.
I have to admit that my family is pretty competitive and we even did an Eixman Olympics last summer with my kids and their friends, while at the Florida coast – which included card games, tennis tourney, spikeball at the beach and someone threw in a plank contest (the winner held a plank for 4 ½ mins!)