From Artist Manager to Account Manager: Why I swapped the entertainment for consultancy
From a young age, Menno expressed a passion for entrepreneurship. During high school, he gained a positive reputation for organising parties and built up a solid word-of-mouth following. By the age of 17, Menno promoted his events via the Dutch social media site, Hyves with the help of his friends. He was soon negotiating deals with DJs and club owners to host his events which in turn led to his first real break in the entertainment industry.
Menno set up his own events company, CLV Amsterdam in 2009 with his friend (which still runs events at clubs in locations such as the Mayfair area of London, England and Barcelona, Spain). Four years later, Menno decided to part ways with his business partner and accepted a role as an Artist Manager where he managed famous Dutch TV personalities but over a year later his career path took a very different turn...
In 2014, Menno made the move from a career in entertainment to consultancy. He joined our Finance team in Amsterdam as an Account Manager and is responsible for researching new areas of business and developing relationships with new and existing clients within the Asset Management sector.
We caught up with Menno to discuss why he hasn't looked back from swapping the glitz and glamour for a corporate career.
Why did you decide to move into the recruitment industry?
I became frustrated with the lack of organisation and structure in the entertainment industry, because of this I was looking to move into a more corporate sector where I could utilise my managerial and entrepreneurial skills.
Around this time, my best friend who works at Michael Bailey Associates referred me for a position within the company. The position was focused on building up a finance team in Amsterdam which really excited me as I had recently graduated with a BA in Business Administration and had also studied finance.
Why did you choose Michael Bailey Associates to start your career in recruitment?
Having been a small business owner myself, I was attracted to the idea of working with a large global company that operates in niche market areas, and being given the opportunity to establish company’s presence in the Asset Management sector was one that I couldn't turn down!
I also liked the fact that Michael Bailey Associates’ business plan is clear, concise and well structured – they know what they’re doing.
Are the skills that you gained from the entertainment industry transferable to Michael Bailey Associates?
Definitely! When I was working as an Artist Manager I had a lot of personal contact with my clients and part of my role was to create a five-year career plan with them which could be a challenging task at times. Coming more from a business perspective than creative, they weren't always receptive of my advice. This taught me to be patient, more in touch with my clients and listen to their every need, something which is essential when maintaining and developing new and existing relationships with clients in the consultancy world.
When I started organising events, persuading DJs and club owners to host my nights allowed me to hone in on my sales and negotiation skills - both of which have improved greatly since I joined Michael Bailey Associates. This meant that when I approached potential clients for the first time, I could do so in confidence.
How does your current role differ with those you've had in the past?
I would get easily distracted when I was in the entertainment business. It’s a stark contrast with the consultancy as my colleagues work much more efficiently and are able to stay incredibly focused.
Admittedly, with so many variables I struggled to stay focused in my first month but my manager soon tackled that issue! He stuck motivational slogans around my computer monitor and placed a picture of a Ford Focus on my desk to ensure that I stayed on track. I received a lot of support from him and we created a task schedule which really helped me knuckle down and manage my time better. I now find that I can get more things done in a shorter amount of time.
Which industry do you feel that you're best suited to?
Changing the direction of my career from entertainment to consultancy was wise. Organising parties when I was younger was a hobby that I was lucky enough to turn into a successful career but now that I am a 26-year-old graduate, I want more structure in my day-to-day working life, stricter deadlines to work to and to be able to apply what I have learnt in my studies to real-life business situations.
For me, Michael Bailey Associates ticked all the boxes in what I wanted from an employer. The managers are supportive and transparent. It’s the perfect company to kick-start a long-term career in consulting.
Our people are from very diverse career backgrounds and cultural backgrounds and that is what makes each of our teams so unique.
We’re always on the lookout for new talent to join our teams across Europe and APAC. If you’re serious about a career in consulting and Michael Bailey Associates sounds like the kind of organisation that you would fit in with, we’d love to hear from you! For opportunities in The Netherlands, please contact Shiva Amini here.