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Naveen Jindal School of Management Alumni Spotlight

From real estate to healthcare management, to information technology and finance, we are proud to shine a spotlight on some of our alumni whose career paths are representative of the many employment options to which a degree from the Naveen Jindal School of Management can lead. With more than 29,000 alumni, the Jindal School is impacting the culture of business in the U.S. and beyond.

The following JSOM graduates agreed to have their information posted. If you are an alumnus and willing to share your information, please contact Caroline Mandel, Assistant Director, Development Communications and Donor Relations

Randall Tan, BS'13 Key Account Manager at Softlayer, an IBM Company Randall Tan had plenty of success before launching his academic career at The University of Texas at Dallas. Prior to coming to UT Dallas, he earned the Gold Individual Physical Proficiency Test while serving with the Singapore armed forces. As a marketing student at the Naveen Jindal School of Management, Tan was involved in the Chinese Student Association, American Marketing Association student club and served as public relations chair for the University’s sales club. He lives in the Dallas area.
Randall Tan enjoys traveling, and recently visited Costa Rica.
Randall Tan enjoys traveling, and recently visited Costa Rica.
Tell us the highlights of your professional career. What are your proudest achievements?
I’ve been with Softlayer now for roughly two years, and I have thoroughly enjoyed every moment of it! Some of the more memorable events include my first day starting with Softlayer, receiving the Managers’ Choice Award and having the opportunity to move within three groups under the sales umbrella. But my proudest achievement was the opportunity to join the Key Accounts team. The Key Accounts team manages the top 250 accounts here at Softlayer. It is a huge responsibility for any rep, and I am honored that my director/VP placed this trust in me.
What brought you to UT Dallas?
UT Dallas was gaining traction in the Dallas area. I knew I would be able to attend a first-class college that could cater to my needs as a student. It had good class sizes which allowed me to become acquainted with my professors; extensive amenities (gym, student union, computer labs, etc.); and an abundance of groups and associations for students to join/engage in.
What is your favorite UT Dallas memory?
I don’t think I can pinpoint a favorite memory because college was made up of small moments, such as the first class, making new friends in class, burning all-nighters with them, vacation breaks and finally graduating.
Who was your favorite professor, and what was your favorite class?
Dr. Howard Dover was my favorite professor by far. Prior to meeting Dr. Dover, I was just like any other college kid — cruising on autopilot through school and waiting for things to happen. He is the person who sparked my interest to pursue sales as a career, and I really wouldn’t be where I am at today if it wasn’t for his advice.

Professional Selling and Intro to Sales were my favorite classes. Both these classes kept me engaged and broke the monotony of daily lectures with face-to-face selling exercises. Class projects assigned by Dr. Dover were created to put you in front of corporate recruiters and VPs to highlight your sales skills and eventually earn you some recognition or even a job down the road. Real life experience in a class setting is what made these classes my favorites.

What’s the best advice you have received?
The best advice came in a very lighthearted way but holds a lot of depth. My VP of sales operations reply to my dilemma was: “You don’t always need to know everything; you just need to do your job well and with hard work, you will get the opportunity to learn new skills. Also, there’s always Google to help out.”
What advice do you have for students hoping to succeed in the business world?
If you want to be successful, you have to be hungry for success first. Without the drive, it is unlikely you will be successful. Do not base your success on luck, as the odds will stack up against you. Be meticulous with your choices and find something that you’re passionate about or an industry that you will be proud to be a part of. It will definitely help out in the long run if you start out with a concrete foundation.
What makes an effective leader?
To be effective, I believe you need to be able to adapt quickly and be knowledgeable. The world is constantly changing. You need to move with the times and gain the breadth of knowledge that is needed to become a teacher instead of a student. 

What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I like to travel — I just recently returned from Costa Rica. I love to eat and try new cuisines, and just hang out with my friends.