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One Day With Mandy Jennings

  • 5-7-2017


Mandy Jennings is Sales and Membership Director of Venues of Excellence, a group of 37 exceptional venues delivering excellence in conferences, training and events. With over 25 years sales and marketing experience in hotel and conference centres, Mandy has held many senior sales roles including Sales Director for the De Vere Group for four years, where she managed over 100 sales people.

What does your morning routine look like?

A typical morning starts with a good coffee and a list. Then another coffee… and a talk through the week with the Venues of Excellence team and colleagues. I check emails, review enquiries and key projects, prioritise preparation for member meetings and plan sales activities and visits to prospective members and meetings with our 37 member venues. We have a wide geographical spread, extending from the South East of England to Scotland so I am kept on my toes. It’s a case of check the lipstick, mirror, signal, manoeuvre and off I go!

What’s the best thing about your job?

Variation and diversity – no two days are ever the same. Visiting amazing venues and meeting the great teams behind them is always inspiring.

What is the most random thing on your desk?

My Scottie dog mouse mat.

What is the best piece of advice you have received?  

Listen… and show that you are really interested in your customers and colleagues.

If you didn’t work in events, what would you like to do?  

When I was at school I wanted to be Prime Minister… still might give it a shot!

What’s your ‘to-do’ list looking like today?

My current to do list includes writing KPIs and objectives for the next financial year for Venues of Excellence, organising a summer familiarisation trip for three venues and sorting invitations to The Meetings Show where we are sharing our stand with ten member venues this year. I am also arranging hospitality for a client event, planning member meetings and a new member induction, while targeting new member venues from our hot prospect list. Lots of exciting and interesting activities to work on … living the dream!

If someone asked your advice on getting into the industry, what would you say?

The great thing about the hospitality industry is there are so many opportunities. My advice is to try to get work experience in different areas to get a good understanding of the roles available before you specialise.

Who is your role model?

That would have to be Kurt Kuen. He was my General Manager in my first sales role at the 800-bedroom Tower Thistle Hotel in London.  He went on to become Vice President of Park Plaza Europe and opened all of the Park Plaza Hotels in the UK and with responsibility for the Park Plaza and art’otels in the UK, Germany and Hungary.  He gave me the belief that you can do anything, be targeted, push yourself, be competitive, motivate those around you, be the best and have fun.  I still live by this advice.

Where do you go to get away from it all and unwind?

A nice walk with my husband and Scottie dog, Phoebe, or a busy afternoon in my garden… or a luxurious 5-star hotel by the beach with a G&T in my hand and a good book.

Favourite destination you’ve ever visited?

Koh Samui in Thailand for my honeymoon… idyllic paradise – and with a very nice man!

If you could steal someone’s job for a day, who’s would you choose?

Well, suppose if I was Wonder Woman – that would be fun! Not sure about the outfit though, but love the cape…

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Paje Events
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