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Share Your Story: Jenny Nixon

by Christy D. on Monday, June 9, 2014

Jenny Nixon Iowa-RVP Youth Market

"I don’t think I am doing anything amazing, or that there's something special about what I do (as a manager). I just think, No. 1, it's important that your team knows you care for them. And No. 2, that you have fun. Laugh and have a good time. Especially when times are tough. Telling them you believe in them. I’m their cheerleader. I believe they can do it.

I’ve been at the American Heart Association for 12 years, and I’m as motivated now as I’ve ever been. In this job, you have to ask yourself, ‘why am I doing this? Why am I here?’ Something makes you keep trying, and keep asking. Something drives you to go back to that school that has told you no the last 5 years. For me, it’s my sons, Kyler and Treyton, who have both been diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a congenital heart condition. I’m here for them.

In addition to passion, you have to have a thick skin. I tell myself all the time, when I have to go to a school who has been telling me no for years, ‘if I don’t go back to there, I am not doing my job.’ Maybe something’s changed that will allow them to participate with us this time. And I’ll tell them that, and they respect that. They understand. They see my passion.

This is my 12th year, and my best yet. I would say, first and foremost, I have a great team. They motivate me. I know the hours they put in, the early mornings, the late nights. They’re out in the field hours before some people are in the office. I’ve been there, done that. They raised $1 million NEW dollars this year because they saw the momentum of their hard work, saw the growth in their territories, and it kept them going. Success breeds success.

Our team rallied around each other.  We started out with a goal of having 100% recruitment. Each person hit that goal in the fall. It was amazing. As they’d hit goal individually, they’d reach out and help their teammates, even making calls for them, to make sure we’d hit our team goal. It wasn’t about themselves as individuals. We were all in this together."