Introducing Madelin Zwingelberg, a seasoned professional currently serving as Director in our Consulting Services division at Mather Economics. With a broad spectrum of expertise gained from diverse roles, Madelin leads a team of specialized consultants. Her skills in utilizing data-driven analytics and econometrics contribute to enhancing various facets, such as pricing strategies, digital transformation, and overall yield management. Join us in acknowledging Madelin’s impactful role in our consulting services and her extensive career experience!
Hi Madelin, could you briefly introduce yourself and your role at Mather Economics?
MZ: I’ve worn many hats, but I’m currently a Director in our Consulting Services division. I lead a team of consultants specialized in leveraging data-driven analytics and econometrics to elevate pricing strategies, drive digital transformation, and optimize overall yield management.
How long have you been with the company, and what attracted you to work here?
MZ: Oh boy, I’ve been here a long time. I started at Mather a week after I graduated college in May 2015. Sometimes, I have a hard time believing I’ve been here for almost 9 years already, yet at the same time, it feels like it was an eternity ago. Our company, both in size and product experience, has changed so much. I was unsure of what job I wanted after college, but I knew I wanted to work at company where I could do econometrics and work with clients to tell stories and inspire change. I believe what holds my interest at this stage is more important at this point. Mather has been a place for me to continually grow and develop. Any time I feel comfortable with what I know, I find myself being challenged by something new. I love the teams I work on, the people I work with, and the projects that continue to challenge me.
Can you describe some of the key responsibilities and projects you’re currently working on?
MZ: These days I spend less time on direct project delivery and focus more time towards allocating resources, strategic initiatives, fostering client relationships, and providing high-level oversight to our Consulting teams.
What is the most interesting or challenging project you’ve worked on at Mather?
MZ: With nearly a decade under my belt, I’ve had the opportunity to work a wide range of projects inside and outside of the newspaper industry. One of my all-time favorites was working with a ticketing event subscription local to Atlanta called INWEGO. The goal of the project was to determine the cohorts of fans that are most and least profitable while determining the leading indicators of churn and retention. It allowed us to think outside of the box given that it was new vertical for us and a unique challenge for me as one of my first projects as manager. We followed up with their team about a year later to hear about what they did with our recommendations and found that they took and implemented several. We were able to provide valuable insights and create actionable recommendations for them. You can read our interview with the co-founder here.
Can you share a memorable experience where your work directly impacted a client’s success?
MZ: During the start of the pandemic, a lot of publishers started looking into reducing the print delivery days to cut costs. I did research to build benchmarks, developed case studies and designed best practices to build out a budget tool to assist with these changes. We were able to use these tools with several clients to guide them on how many delivery days to maintain along with tailored strategies around messaging tactics. You can find some key takeways from the project here.
Do you have any personal strategies for maintaining balance in a demanding work environment?
MZ: It can be extremely easy to fall into a rhythm of continually checking on work after hours when you work from home. It’s hard to separate the two; so, I’ve had to set up some clear lines to prioritize myself. People are often surprised to hear that I don’t have Outlook on my phone. I used to have notifications off, but one day I deleted it entirely while on vacation and haven’t looked back since. It’s been a great way for me to shut off my work brain when I’m not sitting in front of my desk. Also, I almost always take a break midday to go for a walk outside. Training yourself to step away is the best way to maintain balance. Burn out can happen no matter how much you love your job. I recommend adding calendar reminders for yourself.
Outside of work, what are some of your hobbies or interests?
MZ: I believe traveling is the one of the best things you can do for your soul. I love finding a place to go to and then creating the perfect itinerary filled with food, culture, and relaxation – whether it’s a small neighboring town or traveling to a new country. I even started a blog to document it all! When I’m not traveling, you can find me curled up on my sofa reading a thriller or fantasy novel, spending time with my husband, daughter and dog or trying out a new recipe or restaurant.
What advice would you give to someone starting their career in a similar role or industry?
MZ: It’s important to be proactive and take initiative, especially in consulting. We can get into this groove of just doing what the client is asking us to, but that’s not why they hired consultants. They seek our industry knowledge and candid, well-informed, data-backed perspectives. It’s important to think through the types of questions they should be asking and the strategies that would be the most effective for them. We are industry experts and should be thought-leaders as well.