Charlotte Ryland

Shortly after she graduated in 2012 with a degree in marketing, Charlotte Ryland – like most new graduates – received a job offer in her field of study. Unlike most graduates, however, she rejected the offer.

“I received an advertising job offer, but it just didn’t feel right,” Ryland explained. Instead, she accepted a position with Oracle, the computer technology corporation with which she had previously interned. “I received a job offer from Oracle and it has worked out perfectly,” she added.

Born in England and raised in Northern Virginia, Ryland has made a career out of doing things untraditionally.

“I’ve learned there is no conventional path for marketing,” said Ryland. “Embrace the difference and accept the fact that in this industry, you can be untraditional.”

Today, Ryland serves as the Global Mid-Market Lead, G Suite Product Marketing, for Google. In this role, the New York City-based Ryland helps to represent the voice for G Suite, a brand of cloud computing, productivity, and collaboration tools, software, and products developed by Google.

“No day is ‘normal,’” she explained. “Most of my team is on the west coast, so around 11 a.m. my day becomes very meeting-centric, with a lot of video conferencing. Being on video all day was definitely an adjustment.”

Ryland continued, “I focus on  G Suite and how it can help transform business. My goal is to become the subject matter expert for my segment.”

Becoming the subject matter expert is nothing new for Ryland, who was a founding member of PRISM, Virginia Tech’s student-run marketing and creative agency. Created by Marketing Associate Professor of Practice Donna Wertalik in 2010 to establish a social media presence for Virginia Tech’s Pamplin College of Business, PRISM has grown into a comprehensive marketing and creative agency that serves a multitude of customers, both inside and outside of the university.

“I remember when Donna originally approached me with the idea for PRISM,” said Ryland. “She is definitely my mentor and I trust her advice. Donna has her hand on the pulse of the marketing industry.”

Through her work with Wertalik and PRISM, Ryland gained valuable real-world experience. Among other opportunities, the program offered her the chance to work with people from different backgrounds, each of whom had varying abilities.

“I learned how to let people with different skill sets grow and contribute,” she said. “PRISM also offered me my first opportunity to present and ask for funding from high level executives.”

Ryland knew from a young age that she wanted to go into the field of business. At the same time, she gained a love and appreciation for the tech world through her father, who worked for Oracle. Growing up, she assumed she would have to pick one field or another. Instead, she found a way to combine her passions.

“Follow what you love,” Ryland explained “Find a need and shape your job around that.”

She added, “I have loved the opportunity to take a career path that isn’t necessarily sexy and turn it into something sexy.”

Written by Jeremy Norman