I’ve always felt that one of the most important aspects of leadership is figuring out when you’re supposed to lead or when you’re supposed to take the back seat.
While at my previous planning firm, I took on both roles. I was taught the approach to planning events by one of the smartest and most influential planners in the city. She was my leader, I looked up to her and I was constantly learning from her. But then my first year went by and I was promoted to senior planner which I was then delegated the task of finding, interviewing and hiring our interns.
I’m not going to lie, it was a bit weird knowing I wasn’t too much older than the women who applied. I had to set that aside, be professional and interview these ladies like I was interviewed in the past because that was my new role in our company. Fast forward and I realized that besides hiring these ladies, I also had the responsibility of teaching them what I knew and I quickly became their mentor. I always had fun with my leadership role, especially with the last intern I had – Rachel.
Rachel is a bubbly, hard-working positive girl and I saw huge potential in her the minute we first sat down. She continued to impress me event after event. I’d only have to tell her something once because she learned extremely quick and adapted to the situation at hand. It made my job a whole lot easier. It was also an amazing feeling that thanks to me, this girl was transforming into a phenomenal planner.
When I posted that I was looking for a summer intern this year, Rachel immediately reached out. I hired her not as an intern, but as an assistant. This summer I’m busier than I originally expected so I need someone with experience. She has so much drive and it will be amazing watching her take the lead at multiple events this year.
Rachel started working with me this past month so Alaka’i is the PERFECT Hawaiian value that I’m working to grasp. There are bumps to any learning curve. Yes I’ve had many interns below me but I’ve never had an assistant solely under me. Even with the excitement of having her on board, I have to make sure I am doing everything correctly in order to give her the best experience of her life.
The definition of Alaka’i is:
One of the best parts of having Rachel on board is she has a strong understanding of my expectations and why I do what I do. I think it’s safe to say that she trusts and respects me because it would be hard to work for anyone you don’t feel that way about.
As I mentioned in the beginning, I feel that I should constantly strive to further her knowledge of the planning industry as if I’m her mentor but I also need to realize she needs to take some leadership roles in order to grow. I personally struggle finding that perfect balance.
Overall, learning about how to manage leadership is a key aspect of running a successful business. Now more than ever, I am learning how important this value is to instill in my current and future employees here at Ohana Events.
Until next month,