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For over twenty-five years she is working in the hospitality industry, in which guest experiences, hospitality and customer friendliness are her best skills. Starting as a trainee and developted to a key position in the hospitality industry. And since 2004 as a Banquetsales Coordinator for Holiday Inn & ECC Leiden. Read Mirjam's blog about being an event personality behind the scenes. 'Because that's my favorite role and that's where I am at my best. '
It took some time to convince Mirjam for this written portrait. ' Personality also sounds very weighty ', she excuses herself directly. Her manager, Carmen Alvarez Perez, responsible for Sales and Marketing of Holiday Inn and ECC Leiden, knew to convince her. The argument? ' This spring, she was for the first time entirely responsible for a big party. And that she has really done a fantastic job. It was for her a new step in her career. That's not only a great story for herself, I believe it will also stimulate a lot of colleagues in this industry in their ambitions and development. '
We are going back with Mirjam to April 2018. A large regional company that celebrated a successful staff party at ECC Leiden two years earlier, contacts Mirjam again. "Whether we will be able to produce the next edition on Friday 5 April 2019. Just at that time, the colleague who usually took care of these major events left. Suddenly everyone looked at mine direction. Of course I am in this business a long time already, but 'doing' this event t from start to finish, including the evening itself, is something else." Mirjam remembers her doubts, but also the voice in her head that said, 'Come on, get out of your comfort zone. You know very well what you are talking about. Just do it'. What helped was the nature of the customer: 'A very nice client, I knew from the previous time. With whom it is great to work with, who is open to ideas and suggestions and who also has a workable budget. "
The first months passes with intensive brainstorming sessions. Mirjam almost automatically takes the lead and everything walks smoothly. A theme must emerge, that will be the starting point for the content of the program. “We ended up at a beach party, but without sand. Our decorator suggested excellent alternatives, which saved us a lot of extra hassle. " That decorator, like all other suppliers, came from the Leiden region. "I think that is very important. Not only do you need to know your partners very well, you also need to have a commitment. And I find that in the neighborhood rather than further away, although of course there are exceptions. For example, if you can't get what you need around the corner. " As a result, Mirjam gradually attached her suppliers for AV, light and sound, decoration, catering and entertainment. Crucial in her working method: record everything that has been discussed, keep tight schedules and you have to be complete certain about the deliveries.
The first process of this event started in fall 2018, then in January 2019 the script was ready for about 90 percent and all contracts have been signed. 'One of the parts of the program was an extensive opening act with sketches and a break dance act. That performance was so complicated and asked for a very tight schedule. so I asked someone from that group to take charge. That gave me more security that all cues came at the right time. Everyone has their own profession and they know their show best of course. ' Another learning point in unruly practice, says Mirjam: 'You have to be willing to trust others. Have the honest conversation, recognize where others are better. And appreciate them too; if you are good for your suppliers,they will definitely come back to you. '
The party was a huge success. The audience - at least more than 1200 women and only 50 men - enthusiastically went crazy on all active and entertaining program parts. "It was exciting, but not stressful. Everything was well prepared for this in detail. I only heard that an air condition had failed somewhere during the evening afterwards. Everyone in the team is a professional and is able to response when necessary. ” Mirjam calls the process that this new challenge entailed particularly inspiring: 'I really experienced it as special to work together in that way and at that level. The most beautiful memory for me remains that of the happy faces of the guests. And that's what you're doing it for, right? "