Jordan Hansen’s life is coming full circle. After a whirlwind three years in which she moved across the country, changed jobs, lost her job, started a new job, got married, had a daughter, and completed her Master of Business Administration (MBA) at the University of Arizona Global Campus (UAGC).
Today, she works for T-Mobile US — a provider of telecommunications services — where she was recently promoted to Principal Customer Experience Manager (CEM). Every day, she serves as a leader on a team that owns and manages customer experience and helps guide and mentor her peers through complex projects and situations while they work to bring new programs and products to life for T-Mobile’s business customers.
“A Principal CEM is one of the highest individual contributor roles that you can get within the company,” Jordan explains. “People work to get into this role. I’ve been with the company nine years, and all of my experience and education have put me on this path. So this accomplishment — getting this role — this is something I’m really proud of.”
Jordan started at T-Mobile’s Bellevue headquarters before transferring to the company’s offices in Frisco in 2020. Packing up a house for a cross-country move while raising a toddler and excelling at a full-time job was no easy feat, but Jordan has proven she can handle the workload.
Climbing the Ladder
Jordan is originally from Michigan and earned her bachelor’s degree in marketing in 2013. She’d already taken on an executive team leader role with Target before making a move to the Seattle area and joining T-Mobile in 2014.
Like a lot of adult learners, Jordan didn’t think she’d have enough time to go through graduate school – not when she was holding down a full-time job and quickly climbing the ladder – starting as a small business account executive and rising to the rank of senior customer experience manager.
“It was always something that I wanted to do,” Jordan says of earning her MBA. “After I graduated with my bachelor’s degree, I just jumped right into my job, so it went on the back burner.”
At T-Mobile, she met co-workers who were in the process of completing their graduate degrees. The company has a corporate partnership with UAGC that allows employees to return to school and earn a degree tuition-free. That opportunity cleared the way for Jordan’s return.
“So I was like, ‘Why not?’” she recalls. “I wasn’t married, I didn’t have a kid at the time, and I was doing really well in my career, so if not now, then when?”
At that point in her life, Jordan was climbing the corporate ladder fast. She’d been working in the T-Mobile sales operations department, which she describes as “the engine that makes the retail stores work so that they’re able to sell and provide excellent customer service to our customers.” She had already been part of several big initiatives, including a collaboration with Netflix that allowed customers to get the streaming service with their T-Mobile wireless plans.
After she started college, Jordan took on the role of manager of the store operations support team, with five direct reports. It was a promotion earned while she brought newly learned business acumen and breadth of soft skills – time management, critical thinking, among others — to work every day, and her managers took notice.
Then came 2020.
“That Was a Really Stressful Time”
Like so many workers, Jordan’s professional life was interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. She was temporarily laid off during a company restructure, which forced her to put school on hold.
“That was a really stressful time because I wasn’t sure what my future held,” she says. “Not only is it terrible to think that your job and security and income are hanging in the balance, but I was more than halfway through my degree program.”
Fortunately, her layoff was temporary, and she joined another team at T-Mobile and returned to the role of senior customer experience manager. This opportunity, however, would require a move to Texas.
“I talked to my fiancé at the time and said, ‘Let’s do this,’” Jordan recalls. “I said, ‘I’m gonna finish this degree,’ and then we found out we were pregnant.
“We closed on our house and one week later found out. So, new state, no family around, everything happens for a reason. At eight weeks pregnant, we drove across the country and into a new house.”
Jordan decided she was going to finish her degree before having her baby. “I put my head down, did my job, did my papers at night, and submitted my final capstone paper the night before we went to the hospital,” she says.
In what became a total turnaround following a period of uncertainty and stress, Jordan finished her degree and graduated in 2021. She refused to quit because, as she explains, she wanted to show her daughter that women can be successful in business and with their education.
“You can have a successful career, you can have a family, and it’s exciting,” she says. “That’s what I wanted to show her before she was here.”
Jordan says earning her MBA changed her view on business. After graduating, she earned another promotion, this time to senior segment marketing manager. Her most recent promotion came in January, and she credits it all to her degree, saying she can now see her job through a broader lens. She says she understands the impact products and programs have on her company — and the telecommunications industry as a whole — on a greater scale.
“Before, I was very narrow-minded or in the weeds,” she recalls. “After my MBA, I see it from a bigger picture of how this impacts the company and how we fit into the general economic landscape – how everything relates together and the impact my programs are having on the success of the organization.
“My communication skills and ability to convey important messages to the right audience was strongly impacted by the MBA program,” she notes. “My emails and presentations are on another level, and I believe that contributed to my recent promotion.”
While Jordan doesn’t consider herself a role model in the workplace, she says her experience has shown others at T-Mobile that returning to school is worth the time investment. She admits she might not have been able to reach the level she has without her degree and hopes it will propel her further up the ladder into leadership, where more executives also hold MBAs.
“It is the next level achievement unlocked,” she says. “I still own and manage the customer experience while leading and mentoring my peers. I’m bringing new programs and products to life, but now I’m doing it for our business customers.”
Jordan and her family recently purchased a vacation rental home in Florida. “We’ve always loved investing in real estate, so we hope this is the first of many!” she says.
Her continued successes will likely inspire even more content for Jordan’s Instagram account – which she created to help her focus on her health and fitness. Her fitness journey has helped her amass nearly 10,000 followers on the social networking platform, giving her micro-influencer status as she documents her workout routines and family adventures.
She created her account at the end of 2019 when she realized it was time to take some extreme measures around the food she ate and her daily movement.
“I was already going back to school at that point to get my MBA and further my education. I figured, why not better even more parts of me in the process?”
Jordan posts daily workouts and tips to her account that have helped her when it comes to health and weight loss, and it started to gain traction fast. Over the course of a year, Jordan shed more than 45 pounds and got into the “best shape of her life” after her pregnancy. She says she loves the community of like-minded people who are following her and hopes to remain a positive influence.
It’s an amazing reversal of fortune that can all be traced back to Jordan’s decision to go to graduate school.
“Where I was three years ago, laid off, I didn’t have a job,” she says. “Now I have an MBA, I’m a mom, I have a principal role. It’s very exciting. Talk about a comeback.”