Loyola University Chicago

Quinlan School of Business

Merrillyn Kosier

MBA '90; executive vice president at Ariel Investments

What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Swimming in the Mediterranean Sea off of Positano, Italy.

What is your greatest fear?
Cats. And losing my health.

Which talent would you most like to have?
The ability to sing and dance on Broadway. (I'm a "Broadway Baby.")

Who are your heroes in real life?
The 9.11 first responders.

What qualities do you most admire in business professionals?
Honesty, kindness, the ability to get great things done, the ability to inspire others, strong communication, and a quick pace.

Which qualities do you dislike?
Dishonesty, lack of preparation, harshness, inconsistency, ego (lack of humility).

What is the best advice you can offer to young women and men as they start their careers?
Overprepare, come in early, leave late, work weekends, be curious, become indispensable. Be known as the go-to person.

Your top three networking tips?

  1. You are not there for the food or free drinks. Maximize your time by circulating and asking good questions.
  2. Be prepared. Know who will be there, and prepare a few good questions you can ask to break the ice.
  3. Dress the part—look like a leader. Be curious and friendly. Don't forget to exchange business cards.