MRA Sits Down with Sharon DeFelices
MRA Advisory sat down with Sharon DeFelices, CMP. Here’s what we learned:
Mosaic Meetings and Events, LLC is an inclusive corporate event planning firm, based in New Hope, PA. I work with clients all over the country, creating engaging meetings and events. For more information, please check out my website at email@example.com or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How did you get your start in the industry?
I started my professional life in Food and Nutrition and after some time, became a professional Chef at the age of 29. I loved the industry and realized that hospitality was my passion. I cooked professionally in country clubs, restaurant, private schools and ultimately opened my own catering firm. As a solo-prenuer, I needed to learn every aspect of the business. I was sales and culinary operations for the catering business, as well as accounting, HR, maintenance engineer, pot-washer and trash hauler. I loved having my own business and learned every aspect of running a business.
I hung up my knives and apron officially in 2013 and decided to pursue event sales, focusing on corporate events. I went to work for a boutique hotel and conference center. While I grew their sales by 100% in the 4 years that I was the Conference Sales Director, I missed being my own boss. I formalized Mosaic Meetings and Events, LLC in Spring 2017.
What is your favorite thing about meeting planning?
I chose my business name because I have always felt that every event is a compilation of many pieces that come together to create an amazing experience. The individual pieces of an event are each important, in their own right, and being able to understand the role that each piece plays is paramount for seamless production and event success. It’s difficult for people to understand what goes into creating engaging events and I’m happy to craft the vision using the client’s ‘pieces’.
What makes you unique to the industry?
While many meeting management companies focus on just a few components of the event, such as site selection, incentive trips and so on, Mosaic Meetings and Events is a one-stop for all thing’s meetings. My specialty is the technology, Audio/Visual and media for events. These elements tend to be overwhelming for clients and I am always ready to translate the needs of the client for the event into working language. Virtual meetings are becoming more popular as companies are allowing remote work and the ability to convene a remote team is very important to corporate meetings. We are also seeing recording of sessions for webinars, live-streaming and on-boarding libraries. Understanding what resources are needed for this to happen is very important. Of course, having been a chef and a nutritionist really helps when working with a venue for menu planning and for the management of special dietary requests.
What is the best career advice you’ve received?
I have 2 – for business and for life, in general.
First impressions are important…. lasting impressions are essential.
If you have a gift, give it – which simply means to volunteer and share your gifts.
If you were not in this industry, what would you be doing right now?
Most likely, playing with food. I have always found my zen in playing with ingredients to create something spectacular. I tend to obsess over an ingredient and push it in every direction possible. I am currently obsessed with my wood smoker and have begun to play with cheeses and fruits to create an unexpected smoky surprise in a dish.