In the spotlight this week is Melita Williams, managing director and founder of Bespoke Business Events
What was your first job?
Teaching physical education in officially the roughest school in Wales.
What qualifications do you have?
An honours degree in sports science, a PGCE in post-primary teaching and a postgraduate diploma in education.
What do you attribute your success to?
Resilience and gut feeling.
How would you describe yourself to someone who’d never met you?
Warm, friendly and hard working, but don’t get into a rugby discussion with me!
Who do you look up to in business?
My dad. He was a director in the water industry and very well respected from the top down. He had strong relationships from trade unions to contractors and that’s something I’ve brought into my business. He taught me that communication is key. Unfortunately, he has dementia now, but he always knew that I looked up to him and I’m grateful to know he was proud of me before he became ill.
How do you get the best out of people who work for you?
I’m a big believer in flexible working and I’m proud of the loyalty I’ve created from my team through appreciating their work and rewarding them in a range of ways from financial to team building days and motivational rewards. We offer these services to clients so it’s good to practice what we preach.
If you could change one thing about doing business in Northern Ireland, what would it be?
We need to be more confident in the offering here. Thankfully due to recent global tourism accolades, I do think this is changing. And as a Welsh blow-in, if everybody could speak a bit slower that would help!
What website or app could you not do without?
Skyscanner and booking.com. I travel a lot promoting Northern Ireland at business events along with Visit Belfast and Tourism NI. The Flybe app also helps when popping between our Cardiff and Belfast offices.
What was the last book you read?
The Outlander series – I’m on book six out of eight. The novels are set in 18th century Scotland and have pricked my interest in the Gaelic language so I like to bring in as many Irish and Welsh words into our own business trip itineraries to set us apart from other destinations.
What car do you drive?
I’m more of a Glider fan! You can find me on the G2 out to our office in Catalyst.
Tell us something interesting about yourself?
I’m an ex-international flanker for Wales and have been an avid Ulster Rugby fan for 11 years.
What’s your greatest passion outside work and family?
I play tennis at the Belfast Boat Club. And luckily for my business I’m totally passionate about all things Game of Thrones.