Graham Jaenicke 14MBA had strong roots in the entertainment industry when his journey brought him to Goizueta Business School at Emory University for an MBA experience that he credits with changing his career trajectory.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Jaenicke hails from an entertainment mecca. During his undergraduate studies, he worked as an intern for the gaming arm of Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment in L.A. and interned in the theater and motion picture departments for William Morris Agency in New York & L.A., respectively. This internship would later become a job post-graduation, leading to acknowledgments in celebrity memoirs, health books, crime novels, and even in a romance novel.
After sensing a shift in the publishing industry, he moved back to L.A. and joined an independent TV and film production company that produced shows for major networks. “While I was there, I applied to business school,” he says.
The entertainment industry, not just publishing, was changing and I felt like I didn’t have the business acumen or skills to articulate what I thought was happening.Graham Jaenicke 14MBA
Changing Industries Often Demands Honed Skills
Jaenicke came to Goizueta to gain that acumen and used it to change industries. When most of his peers and professors were engaged in consultancy, he took the hint and joined global management firm McKinsey & Company after earning his Two-Year MBA.
Memorable classes that he cites include a blend of creative and strategic thinking, such as financial accounting with Kristy Towry, consumer psychology with Ryan Hamilton, competitive advantage with Kevin Coyne, and entrepreneurship with Charles Goetz.
Jaenicke’s life influencers are many, what he describes as a “wonderful patchwork quilt.” Many panels of that quilt come from his time at Emory. “When I think about my life and the decisions that I have made, I can’t think of one with a more positive light than my experience at Emory. It opened doors that I didn’t know existed as far as my career. It expanded my network of peers and mentors and relationships in a way that was incredible,” he says.
Enthusiastically giving back to Goizueta, he joined the alumni board and serves as its president, actively participating in the mentoring program. In addition to board service and engaging in Impact and Day 1 Challenges with current students, he has shared professional opportunities for Goizueta students, hosting two interns last summer.
Presently, Jaenicke is the strategy lead and chief of staff to the CEO of Snap One, which manufactures and distributes smart home technology. “Rather than your mass-market solution like a Ring device or a Google thermostat, we sell to professionals who will go into a house and install complex lighting or shades or outdoor audio zones,” he explains.
Jokingly, Jaenicke thinks Goizueta qualifies as one of his hobbies. He enjoys board games, a tradition that began with classmates at Emory, and loves to see what’s happening in the entertainment industry.