This week’s LeaderBear is Missouri State Alumni, Rob Stange. He graduated from MSU with his bachelor’s degree in marketing in 2006 and his MBA in marketing in 2007. In 2007, he was an inaugural recipient of the Board of Governors Citizen Scholar Award. Later he had the opportunity to come back to Missouri State and present in two different Public Affairs Conferences. He said, “It was a great opportunity to give back to MSU through service, and I also was able to do some guest lecturing in the marketing department!”
Upon graduation Rob was a global sourcing product manager at Target headquarters for wall décor (art, mirrors, and clocks). He had the chance to travel to China, Vietnam, India, Thailand, the Philippines, Turkey, Canada and across the U.S. representing Target to the vendor community. He was recognized with a 2012 corporation pyramid leadership award for leading a team through change and demonstrating personal drive and accountability.
Rob now has the dream job of manager of promotional products for the Walt Disney Company. He essentially manage a team that ensures Disney is able to provide specialty merchandise (free stuff!) to guests and cast members that are of high quality, meet Disney brand standards, and also are produced by socially responsible manufacturers.
As an undergraduate he facilitated the Commerce Bank Emerging Leaders program. His top strengths are: Maximizer, Arranger, Futuristic, Individualization, and Positivity.
When asked what about our programs impacted him the most he replied,
“I was a facilitator for emerging leaders, and absolutely loved the experience. Anyone can be “designated” a leader/manager, but a true leader earns the title by gaining the trust and support of people around them. Being a facilitator required me to learn those skills by gaining trust and leading through example to other students. I’ve carried this on into my professional career but making sure that I lead through actions and words versus by a feeling of entitlement. It’s so much more rewarding when you have the belief of others that are you are a leader!”
His advice to younger students:
“Never stop setting goals. Yes, life happens and things change to where you end up in different locations, situations, and circumstances than what you anticipated a few years prior. However, it’s important to always have a path in your mind that forces you to keep moving forward in life while enjoying the present that is around you.”