Maeve Stanton

Hometown: Chicago, Illinois

Alma mater: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Major: Communications

Current Role: Senior Sales Development Representative (Chicago)

When did you start the MDP program and what was your role?

I started the MDP Program in June of 2020 in the Sales Track as a Sales Development Representative on the Mid Market Accounts team.

What led you to this current role?

I knew I wanted to be in a high-paced client-facing role engaging mostly with prospects, so the Sales Track was a great place to start! I also wanted to have product knowledge of all three of our software solutions so that was a driving factor as well.

What is a typical day in your current role?

A typical day as an SDR consists mainly of reach outs through dials and emails as well as taking inbound calls. The marketing team pushes leads to our queue, either high priority leads or normal priority leads. SDRs serve as tech consultants so our conversations are discovery calls mostly with financial advisors and asset managers. Based on persona and need, I book product demonstrations for either Advisor Workstation, Morningstar Direct or Morningstar Office and pass these opportunities to the appropriate Mid Market seller.

Did you participate in any stretch projects?

 I have not participated in any stretch projects yet.

What advice would you give your first-year self?

You cannot learn everything in a day! Take the time to get situated and know that learning is an ongoing process. Lastly, confidence comes over time.

How was it like starting your MDP role in a virtual setting?

I was a little nervous to start virtually but it was such an easy and smooth transition! The T&C team helped pave the way with onboarding and my manager also did a great job with training. I felt very welcomed from the start! Everyone on my immediate team was always willing to hop on a quick call whenever I had a question.

How has Morningstar helped you in this pandemic?

 I started my role before I was expected to! When I accepted the position, I had initially requested to begin in July. When the pandemic hit, I did not know if my start date would be pushed back or not. So many companies postponed start-dates, resigned offers, or even laid off employees. But, I was fortunate enough to start a month early. Morningstar worked hard to provide stability and comfort to both current and future employees in a financial crisis.

One piece of WFH advice?

Utilize your team’s group chat! Questions can easily be answered with a quick message. Communication is key!

Georgina Menegas

Hometown: Wilmette, IL

Alma Mater: University of Michigan

Major: Psychology; Minor in Applied Statistics and Business

Current Role: Regional Sales Associate, Direct-to-Advisor Sales (Chicago)

When did you start the MDP program and what was your role?

I started in the MDP program in May of 2015, weeks after graduating from Michigan! I started in client support for Morningstar Office.

What was your next position? What led you to this role?

I transitioned after six months into the Team Lead role for Morningstar Office Support, where I was responsible for the onboarding and training of new Customer Support Reps (CSRs) and day-to-day operations. I enjoyed working across different business groups to solve problems, so then I transferred to Sales Excellence where I served as a Project Manager. I had the opportunity to work on projects that impacted the performance and efficiency of our global sales teams.

What is a typical day in your current role?

In my current role on the Direct-to-Advisor Sales Team, I consult with financial advisors, asset managers, and consultants across Southern California to identify software solutions and data needs for their practice. A typical day consists of speaking with prospects, either via phone or email, or collaborating with sales managers on how to effectively win business.

Did you participate in any stretch projects or ERGs?

Not formally, though I found myself on various projects with Talent & Culture (our Human Resources group). One project of which was a project I pitched to stakeholders regarding feedback on the MDP.

What advice would you give your first-year self?

I would encourage my younger self to reach out earlier to fellow employees for career chats. I would encourage new MDPs to take advantage of our culture and meet with fellow employees who have a role that seems interesting.

What is your favorite place in Chicago?

Wrigley Field! There are few things better than spending a summer afternoon cheering on the Cubs.

Erica Epstein

Hometown: Pepper Pike, Ohio

Alma Mater: Cornell University

Major: Biology

Current Role: Customer Success Manager, Buy-side Institutional Equity Research Sales (Chicago)

When did you start the MDP program and what was your role?

I began the MDP program in July 2017 as a Customer Support Rep for Morningstar Direct.

What was your next position? What led you to this role?

My next role was as Team Lead for the Direct Support Team. I started this role in August 2018.

What is a typical day in your current role?

A typical day in my current role involves facilitating department-wide daily research calls, pulling data for our clients, and supporting our equity research sales Senior Vice Presidents.

Did you participate in any stretch projects or ERGs?

I participated in a competitive analysis stretch project under the Head of Strategy and Head of Investor Relations. Our first meeting was with Kunal! It was a six month project on a team including me and three other MDPs. Each of us dug into a few of Morningstar’s competitors across business segments. Our suggestions were presented to the CFO and subsequently incorporated into the company’s public earnings release: :

What advice would you give your first-year self?

Do not eat lunch at your desk! It is important to take a mental break and lots of networking can happen at lunch. Also, if you find a team that is interesting to you, grab coffee with a member and ask them to keep you in mind for a future project they might need help on. Not every team utilizes stretch projects, so this is an alternative way to get involved.

What is your favorite Netflix binge?

The new “Decades” documentary series. So interesting!