Jonathan Ng spent last summer working for Amazon.
“I had the opportunity to meet so many amazing and driven people. They were all working on revolutionary ideas,” he said. “I honestly believe that Amazon is poised to disrupt major industries.”
The full-time, Foster MBA student worked as a Senior Product Management MBA intern for the Seattle tech giant. During an internship that spanned 12 action-packed weeks, Jonathan designed and developed a new product for his team.
“I had the privilege of working with the worldwide deals and events team. They coordinated both the deals page (Lightning deals, Today’s deals) and major events — including Prime Day and Black Friday — globally. I was given a task to aid the team in improving an event performance, which ultimately meant figuring out an innovative solution to drive more online traffic, and acquiring and retaining more customers.”
“It was an amazing and practical experience. I had to dive deep into data to determine and to solve the various Amazon customer segments’ pain points. I was having multiple meetings to figure out how to drive traffic to the events in the morning. In the afternoon, I was collaborating with cross functional teams, including the legal, finance and various product teams to test my concepts. Then in the evenings, I was working on spreadsheets and white papers.”
“While it was intense, I enjoyed the experience because of the freedom I was given. Amazon gave me the leeway to determine and chart my own path throughout the internship. I also enjoyed the fact that interns worked on real business problems and had the opportunity to come up with real solutions. My product is still under development by my team and should be launched sometime this year.”
Despite their heavy workloads, Jonathan’s team members always made time for him.
“That was an eye opener for me. I started in July, during the implementation phase for Prime Day, Amazon’s biggest event! You can imagine the amount of work that goes into it and the pressure of maintaining its success. But despite this, they all set aside time to give me guidance, introduced me to others, and give me frank feedback on my progress. Honestly, they all truly adhered to the Amazon leadership principles. That was something that I saw everywhere in the company. It’s why I believe Amazon will continue to do great things in the future.”
Foster is only about five miles from Amazon’s South Lake Union campus, and Foster interns and alums can be found working all throughout the company.
“I was working directly with other Foster interns as well as other MBA interns. We were bouncing ideas about our projects back and forth. As an example, my classmate, Emily Chen, has a really strong marketing background. She was also an intern at Amazon last summer, and I leveraged her marketing experience to help me with the product I was working on. I also had a chance to meet some Foster alums when I was there. They all gave me some really helpful advice, and were willing to take time out to get coffee in order to share tips on how to succeed at Amazon. The Foster connection is an invaluable asset to have!”
After his internship concluded, Jonathan was given an offer to return. He happily accepted.
“My summer was so great that making the decision to go back was easy. I really enjoyed how everyone at Amazon was always looking for the next idea, that they all wanted to Think Big, a key leadership principal. I’m also really excited about the direction of Amazon.”
Jonathan credits much of what he learned during his first year at Foster with his success at Amazon.
“Looking back, my first year courses set me up for success. I had to generate my own free cash flow and calculate NPV (net present value). I used the 5Ps (product, price, promotion, place, people) of marketing. In particular, I really relied on the data analysis skills I worked on throughout my first year.”
“During my Amazon internship, I had the opportunity to work with a truly diverse, and an extremely bright group of people. In my opinion, that is also one of the main strengths of the Foster program. I would encourage future Foster students to leverage that aspect of the program. It will definitely help you achieve your goals!”