How did the formation of Jenny Lie Event Management come about?
I come from a hospitality background, having graduated in hotel management in Holland and then going on to gather experience in events and exhi- bitions. From being an ‘innocent helper’ in the family business, I began to gain inter- national experience in event management.
At the start of this century, I found myself in Hong Kong and after getting to know the local and regional mar- kets, I quickly picked up Cantonese and Putonghua. Having a moderate fluency in Dutch and other European languages helped.
I co-founded J&J Event Management in 2004 and later took full ownership and renamed the company Jenny Lie Event Management (JLEM). We take pride in operating a dynamic service and JLEM is contactable 24 hours a day, throughout the year, with the aim of answering enquiries within 24 hours.
Has your background influenced the way you approach event work?
I hail from a demanding and strict family of mainland Chinese. Despite few skills and having to overcome language difficulties, they did their best to make a living overseas – first in the former Dutch colony of Suriname, in South America, and then The Netherlands. My parents showed me that success came from hard work, and being smart and persistent while maintaining full integrity. I’ve noticed that this attitude works in the events industry, especially when faced with irregular and long hours. Attention to detail and working to a high degree of professionalism at all times without any emotional influences are also qualities that are needed.
What is the most memorable event you organised?
There is no most-memorable event in which I’ve participated. At each stage and time, there are different events that make a project memorable. That comes when it’s either so impressive that it exceeds our high standards, or happens to be very much below my standards of expectations on how an event should be organised and communicated at all times. We work with different teams and people – the mind always has to be sharp to manage and achieve win-win results for everyone.
Some of the most interesting events I have seen, no matter how large or small, or wherever they were organised, would be a KPMG Annual Dinner for 2,500 guests; the Holland in Hong Kong Festival, which was open to the public; and week-long Oracle and IBM conferences in Hong Kong and Macau. These involve working with teams from different backgrounds and levels of understanding whether organising incentives, conferences and other events.
What next for JLEM?
We recently marked our 10th anniversary, and we’ve proven to be an outstanding events company. This helped us win the Hong Kong Most Valuable Company Award in the Trust category. We’ve built a reputation for high standards and our patience and flexibility for each client is fully appreciated. We’re looking forward to maintaining this professionalism for whomever and whatever we meet in the future.