For Chicago Bears home games, Rebecca Reid has one of the best seats in Soldier Field. Not that she sits very much.
Reid is a suite sales manager for the NFL team, and she spends game days and nights darting from suite to suite checking in with her clients, who can range from a dad taking his family out for a special afternoon to CEOs entertaining/showing off for their clients.
It’s not the typical way to enjoy a game, but Reid loves every minute.
“You definitely stand out when you’re in a suit in a stadium, but the atmosphere is electric. It’s so fun,” Reid says. “My friends ask me all the time if I hate working games on weekends, but that’s one of the benefits.”
Reid’s job is equal parts customer service, brand marketing, corporate relations, event planning, and real estate agent. Which part steps to the forefront depends on the conversation. The job requires a broad skill set, something Reid had collected across her academic and professional journey.
A native of Gwinnett County, Reid started college at Florida State intending to be a theater major. That theater background helps her today when she is talking in front of people, delivering a presentation, or discussing a $300,000-a-year suite with a CEO.
Reid enjoyed the theater experience but was skeptical of the career path, so in her junior year, she transferred to UGA, where her older brother had graduated and her younger sister was attending.
She earned a degree in marketing from the Terry College of Business and moved to Chicago immediately after graduation. She quickly landed a job at the Executives’ Club of Chicago, a networking forum for the city’s business leaders. Reid worked there for eight years in a variety of roles, all of them directly interacting with the club’s powerful and influential members. The experience gave her expert-level networking skills and an authentic ease in dealing with the Windy City’s elite.
It was also an ideal training ground for her current role, which she started in 2018.
“I love sales. And I fought that for a really long time. I was, like, ‘I’m not a seller. I don’t want to go into sales,’” she says. “But then I realized everything I was doing was sales. And even if you’re not specifically in a sales role, you’re still selling because you’re selling your ideas.”
Reid is on a team of four suite sales managers augmented by a three-member service team. Soldier Field, the Bears’ home since 1971, boasts 132 luxury suites ranging in size from 8 to 50 people, plus a skyline suite that can handle up to 180 guests. The team’s clientele is varied to say the least.
“My approach is very tailored,” she says. “We’re not selling season tickets, it’s almost like buying real estate. So, I’m not going to like hop on the phone with somebody for 20 minutes, and then they buy a $300,000 suite. You have to build trust and a rapport and really understand what our customers want.”
After suites are sold, Reid shifts into the customer service aspect of her job, whether it’s off-season gatherings for season ticket holders on St. Patrick’s Day or Draft Day, or a Week 6 matchup against the Vikings.
“We can only control the suite experience, so we always focus on that,” she says. “So for me, the hot dogs will always be hot. The glass will always be clean when fans are looking out. And even if there’s a loss, people will have a good time.”