Meetings magazine and The Planner celebrates the women who have made their mark on the MICE industry. Everyday this week we will be highlighting ten of the wonderful women who made the Top 40 Women in MICE list.
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Creative director of Conceptual Eyes
Adding creativity and imagination to your events is what Lindy lives for. With a creative background and focus on collaborative practice, Conceptual Eyes was born out of Lindy’s interest in growing clients’ visual literacy and internal communication. Visual strategy is the foundation of all that Conceptual Eyes does. Lindy and her team turn words into pictures. People remember pictures. This means that the message of the event will be remembered long after the closing ceremony. “Lindy is a great person to work with, constantly coming up with great ideas. She is an invaluable team worker and always has a smile on her face. She gets very involved in each project and is an asset to anyone she works with,” says one of her clients.
Lindy trained in fine art and has international experience in team building.
Groups and conferences sales manager for Southern Sun Elangeni & Maharani
With over 20 years of dedicated experience in the industry, Lisa is at the forefront of understanding clients’ needs. She is well-known for her ability to deal with clients on all levels, and to build lasting relationships. Her leadership and innovation skills, when dealing with large association committees on structuring a win-win solution when faced with challenging situations, are completely admirable. Lisa constantly keeps up with business trends and seeks to fully understand her customers’ requirements and provide creative solutions. It is for this reason that the hotel has a lot of repeat business. Her passion for the industry is evidenced by the time and energy she devotes to her career. For Lisa, the only way to do great work is to do what you love and, by doing this, she has carved a successful career.
Lisa was part of the opening team for the Hilton Durban.
Managing director of Siyenza Management
Having launched and hosted three strategic events, namely the Africa Energy Indaba in 2008, the Infrastructure Africa Business Forum in 2011, and Manufacturing Indaba in 2014 – all with a focus and aim to grow the respective industries and sectors – Liz has shown great leadership, innovation, passion, creativity, and the highest level of integrity and mentorship to many colleagues, who have grown in their careers and, in some cases, even formed their own businesses. Liz’s skills to perform on high-level platforms have made a real difference in the dimensions of the marketing, communication, and business events industry. With her knowledge, she contributes substantially to encourage and empower new generations of professionals, particularly young women.
Under Liz’s leadership, the 2015 Africa Energy Indaba smashed its previous records and achieved in excess of 30% growth on the previous year’s delegate numbers.
General manager of Synergy Business Events
Her excellent performance and organisation skills, as well as her follow-through on tasks, have resulted in Lorin developing positive relationships with people in the industry. She leads her team with great insight, passion, and innovation. Clients and suppliers can rest assured when dealing with her, as they are dealing with a reliable and trustworthy individual. Lorin is always on top of all aspects of the various projects she is involved in, and is only satisfied once everyone is happy. Besides her commitment and love for the industry, Lorin is also known for her great smile and infectious laugh, as well as going the extra mile to make sure the project is successful.
With a long commitment to the hotel and conference sector, Lorin has also served on numerous association committees.
Sales manager of exhibitions at Sandton Convention Centre
Lorraine immigrated to South Africa from England as a child and has lived in Joburg ever since. After matriculating, she went on to graduate from Rapid Results College, in 1987, with an AASATA Travel Diploma. She currently holds the position of sales manager for exhibitions at the Sandton Convention Centre, where she has held various positions, over the last 15 years. She continuously creates the ideal platform and experience for guests at major events and this has resulted in the success of shows, such as Days of the Dinosaur, My World of Tomorrow and Totally. She also served on the EXSA board as Venue Forum Chair, during 2013.
Lorraine has won the EXSA Best Venue Employee Award for two consecutive years, in 2013 and 2014.
Managing director of The Green Cab
Described as a strong, results-driven leader and strategic thinker, Lynn has chartered her journey to small business development, after gaining overall business experience at both international and national corporates, during the first two decades of her career and a decade of setting up two award-winning businesses in the tourism and environmental sectors. Her experience has provided her with a skillset to provide professional services to organisations who want to reduce the carbon footprint of their fleets or their supplier’s vehicles, through the development of carbon reducing strategies, supply, fitting, and maintenance of carbon reducing technologies.
The Green Cab is an eco-innovation company that provides South Africa’s first cost-effective, aggressively green transport solution for the business events industry.
Marketing, sales and events director at The Durban International Convention Centre
Having moved through the ranks of sales and event coordination, and having spent several years in the role of the centre’s marketing and sales manager, Mala brings a wealth of first-hand knowledge and insight to her position. Before being asked to join the Durban ICC opening team, Mala worked for Sun International, at the Sun City Complex, as assistant banqueting manager, where she gained valuable conference, exhibition, and concert experience. Prior to this, Mala obtained her national diploma in Hotel Management and Catering from the Durban University of Technology and was the recipient of their Alumni Award, in 2005, in recognition of her superior career performance.
Mala has been responsible for the coordination and project management of many successful world-class events hosted at the centre, including personally overseeing the opening of the Durban ICC Arena, in 2007.
Owner of Specialized Tours & Events
Event planner and service provider
Margi is involved in the industry on a daily basis, on different levels, and her passion for service excellence has ensured her being regarded as a leader in the industry, for more than 25 years. She leads by example and has been a mentor to many in businesses, as well as to individuals on a personal basis. Margi is dedicated to her work, and is willing to spend whatever time or energy as is necessary to accomplish the task at hand. She is open to ideas, and can think outside the box, which is essential in the competitive MICE industry.
Margi’s value in the industry is marked by the numerous leadership positions she has filled, including positions on the national executive committees of SAACI, SITE and ASATA, as well as the awards she has achieved.
Owner of Exhibition & Event Services
Exhibition & Event Services (EES) evolved in the early 90’s as conference and event organiser. However, by 1994, Marion had identified an urgent need for professional and reliable electronic registration solutions for medium to large events. After completing some in-depth research in the large exhibition centres in Europe, the EES Bar Code Registration System was born. The software is continually being refined and added to, and is still considered an industry standard best practice registration system. Over 700 successfully registered events have been personally managed by Marion and her team throughout Africa and United Kingdom. They continue to write user–friendly, relevant software for the event industry to suit client’s individual event requirements.
Marion is completing her internationally recognised professional chef diploma at Prue Leith Chef Academy. She also has a passionate love of art and music and this plays an active role in her life.
Head of design at GL events
In order to survive in the exhibitions industry for 11 years you have to show a tremendous amount of passion and love for the industry. Monique takes pride in everything she produces, and her designs and work ethic are a clear reflection and extension of who she is as a person. She has exceptional creative skill and no task gets her down. Whether it be an exhibition stand design, exhibition design, event concept, retail concept, or store design, she combines creativity with practicality and good business sense to generate concepts and physical products that exceed expectations. Monique also gives back to the industry – she grows designers straight out of varsity and equips them with key design and business skills that enables them to reach a level of design in half the time they would at any other organisation.
Monique has been a key player in the construction of a new judging methodology for the EXSA stands and ran most of the rating system for them, in 2015.