Pride Month Spotlight: Ticketmaster SVP of Fan Engagement, Ismail Elshareef
You can’t discover innovative solutions without a dedication to building diverse teams. Nobody knows that better than Ticketmaster SVP of Fan Engagement, Ismail Elshareef. As the executive sponsor of our dedicated LGBTQA+ employee resource group PrideNation, Elshareef has played an integral part in ensuring that the best and the brightest minds are able to unlock opportunities for advancement and leadership at Ticketmaster by simply bringing their full, authentic selves to work.
We spoke with him to get his firsthand experience.
Q: What were some of the factors that influenced your decision to join Ticketmaster?
Jody Mulkey, the CTO at the time, was the main reason I came back to TM. The transformation I saw him leading was inspiring and I wanted to join him on that journey.
Q: How big of a role does a company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion play in your career decision making?
It’s an important factor, for sure, but mostly importantly, I look for diversity of thought and openness to different ideas.
What inspired you to be an executive sponsor for Pride Nation?
I was asked to join the community in that particular capacity and I immediately jumped at the opportunity. Anything I can do to bring attention and focus to the issues facing the LGBTQ community, I’m there. I’m very blessed in so many ways and being visible and vocal is one way I can contribute back to the community that gave me so so much.
What impact have you seen Pride Nation have on our work culture?
The visibility the Pride Nation has is powerful and directly or indirectly impacts all of us. I can’t tell you exactly if I’ve seen a direct impact on the culture, but I know when we share our stories, when we are visible, when we are vocal about what we care about, we change people. We just do.
Q: Any cool projects you’re currently working on that you can share?
We just wrapped our very first FanJam event in NYC! It’s a day-long event where we invite fans to come join us for the day, discuss pain points and work on solutions together. This FanJam was co-hosted by American Express, one of our amazing partners!
Q: What excites you most about working at Ticketmaster? About our work culture?
I love the live entertainment space. I’m a music junkie and to get to work on making the concert-going experience better every day is a dream come true. From a culture perspective, I truly love the people I work with. They’re more than colleagues. That goes a long way when you’re spending more than half your life at work. You need to truly enjoy those whom you work with.
Q: What advice do you have for anyone who wants to join Ticketmaster full time?
Be yourself. Speak up. Take initiative. The rest will happen automatically for you ?
Q: How have you grown your career at Ticketmaster?
My work got me more work, which I’m grateful for. I’m also very vocal on what I like to do. It’s important to be explicit about your career desires and what excites you at work. Managers aren’t mind readers ?
Q: Which live event are you most excited to see this year?
Billie Eilish at The Greek! Cannot wait!
Ticketmaster is the global market leader in live event ticketing processing over 500 million ticket transactions per year across 29 countries. Through exclusive partnerships with thousands of venues, artists, sports leagues, and performing arts centers and theaters, Ticketmaster delivers unparalleled access to the most iconic live events to millions of fans worldwide.