A catch up with Zoe Benoit | Moving Venue
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Tuesday 23 February 2021

A catch up with Zoe Benoit

We are delighted to catch up with our very own Head of Sales for Moving Venue to discuss the lessons learnt from 2020 and hopes for a positive 2021.

Tell us about yourself and your role at Moving Venue.

Whilst my role at Moving Venue and Smart Group spans back almost 6 years, my current role as Head of Sales for Moving Venue has by far been the most rewarding. Managing a small team of foodie fanatics and event enthusiasts, we look after over 50 incredible venues in London and the South East, with a portfolio of hundreds of event spaces suitable for all of our clients.

Heading up a young, fun, and innovative team of sales people has meant that we have leaped from strength to strength over the past three years, securing new venue listings, building new and varied client relationships, breaking into new industries, and maintaining those long-standing customers relationships who set the bar higher and higher each year.

Whilst my role involves curating a sales process and structure for the team, the premise behind the success of the sales team is its people! The team works hard to engage with clients on all aspects of their event, they understand it’s not just about the budget, style, or even just the food! We invest time in our clients to understand what they want to create from their event and more importantly why. I believe it is this level of care and service instilled within my team that means we continue to push boundaries and see no limits in what we can achieve for our clients. Taking the time to build hundreds of relationships is no easy task, however, we thrive most when working under pressure and working closely together in a buzzing sales office!

There are no two days that are the same as a Head of Sales. It sometimes starts with a browse of an inbox full of enquiries, followed by client meetings and site visits; and often ends somewhere in the middle of an amazing venue surrounded by guests about to enjoy an evening of our best catering!

How has lockdown been for you and what have you learnt?

Lockdown has been an incredible eye-opener in all aspects of life, but most importantly how I choose to use my time. With what feels like every hour of the day now being spent indoors in our homes, I’ve really learned how to make the most of the time I have and to spend it doing things I love. Prior to the lockdown and living a very busy life, filled with industry events and a busy social calendar meant that I rarely dedicated time to enjoy watching a full TV series, following a recipe for dinner, going on forest walks and decorating my home. I have learnt to make the most of the hours I might typically have been commuting to work or indeed onsite at an event to take a moment,  and rather than dreaming of being outdoors, simply relish in the abundance of time we all have spare to do things that we never make time to do before we get back to doing what we love most! This month alone, I’ve racked up an average of 12,000 steps walking through Epping Forest and repainted my living room twice! (There are so many shades of grey!).

What’s been your favourite Lockdown Netflix series?

Don’t judge but… I have now completed all 9 series of The Office – US version and I don’t regret a single thing, by far the most ‘laugh out loud’ series I think I’ll ever watch!

What are your event industry hopes for 2021?

Whilst much of last year felt as though the nation was waiting for a sign of improvement, with the launch of the UK’S COVID vaccination programme it really means that some of these hopes can become a reality.  I hope we see the return to small gatherings and events during the summer months of 2021, with weddings picking up as early as May. I think that by September we will be in a position – with the go ahead from Boris, to begin hosting the annual award ceremonies we know and love! Wella Trendvision at The Roundhouse, CEDIA Awards at The V&A, Stagecoach at The London Transport Museum, the list is endless!

What are you most looking forward to when live events return?

Talking to people, face to face!

More than anything I miss engaging with people in a personable way! Client meetings, site visits and venue catch ups are just not the same through a computer screen. We are social creatures by nature and the event industry proves that. I most look forward to speaking to clients about how excited they are for the evening ahead, listening to hosts rehearse their interactive set on stage before guests arrive, watching roaming musicians getting guests talking. The sounds, the laughs, the event buzz!

I think I’d survive if I never had to use Zoom or Teams again 😊

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