Armaan Ahluwalia is the ultimate team player. Whether it’s at work with the Kansas City Chiefs or just
hanging out with friends and family, he has everyone’s best interests in mind. From working with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers to his current business analytics role with the Chiefs, Armaan has continually adapted to emerging trends and built an outstanding start to a promising career in the sports industry.
Recently, the Sponsorship Space had the opportunity to discuss industry roles, sponsorship trends, the importance of data, and much more with Armaan. For more on Armaan, see his LinkedIn profile here.
1) Tell us about your journey - what excites you most about working in the sports industry?
I graduated from Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia with an undergrad degree in Business
Management. Following graduation, I worked on the Food & Beverage side of the sports business for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, where I managed a team of 30 on the suite level. I decided to pursue my MBA with a focus in sports business at San Diego State University. The program at SDSU helped me gain insight into the industry and created an opportunity for me to follow the career I wanted. Part of the program at SDSU required us to complete an internship, and I managed to secure one with the Kansas City Chiefs. Within six weeks of being in Kansas City, they offered me the job as a suite services coordinator, which then led me to my next position as the Coordinator of Business Analytics.
To me it has always been a lifelong goal to work in the NFL and work in sports. I am excited to work in
the sports industry because it is challenging and rewarding all at the same time.
2) Can you describe the organizational culture of the Kansas City Chiefs?
The Kansas City Chiefs are an excellent organization. The culture in my department is one that makes
you feel like you are working with friends that have your back, as well as one that challenges you to go above and beyond to be the best in the NFL.
3) In terms of job responsibilities, what does a typical week look like for you?
There is no typical week for me. My role includes account management, financial reporting, software
evaluation, and special projects. Depending on the time of year, my time could be focused on building recaps or building data reporting spreadsheets to help a client achieve their goals and plan a strategy for the following season.
4) How do you feel analytics and data shaped the future of sports sponsorships?
Analytics and data have drastically transformed the industry in the last 5 to 10 years. I think that there is still more transformation to come. In regards to sponsorship, data and analytics have provided context as well as information to make informed decisions. On the brand side, dollars are being spent efficiently and the ROI case is becoming more data focused.
5) What are your favorite resources & publications to stay up-to- date on industry trends?
Every day I read the Sports Business Journal (Morning Buzz, Daily, and Closing Bell), the Kansas City
Business Journal, Wall Street Journal, LinkedIn, as well as Five Thirty Eight, which always has good data points.
6) How have mentors and respected colleagues helped you in your career endeavors?
For me it has always been the ability to ask them questions and get their thoughts on how they handled a situation or a problem. This has provided me plenty of insight into how successful people have handled difficult or challenging situations.
7) For students looking to break into the industry, what would be your top 3 pieces of advice?
Go the extra mile, the sports industry is a tough industry and has naturally competitive people in it. If
you go the extra mile it will be noticed and may make the difference between you getting a job or not.
Be critical, the worst thing you can do is continue to do things the way they have always been done.
Challenge the status quo and bring a fresh perspective.
Network! The sports industry is exceptionally connected, and by making a good impression, you could easily grow your network and lead to your next job. It’s all about who you know and if you do a good job it will pay off in the long run.
8) Outside of work, what are some of your favorite things to do?
Spend time with my wife, travel to new and favorite destinations, mainly sports focused if I had to
Business Analytics Coordinator
Kansas City Chiefs
Kansas City, MI