Jillian Kyde, 35, works in Las Vegas, as executive director of sales at Park MGM and NoMad Las Vegas. As a 2018 40 Under 40 honoree, Kyde discusses her passion for the events industry.
*Connect with Kyde on Instagram.
What I do:
Strategic lead and talent development of the Park MGM (formally known as Monte Carlo) sales team, comprised of eight managers and four coordinators. Some of the standard duties consist of reviewing convention contracts, building and training the sales team, collaborating with my revenue counterparts, driving new initiatives to exceed sales targets and motivating the team. This all done while ushering in two new luxury properties to Las Vegas in 2018, which will be called Park MGM and NoMad Las Vegas.
How I got here:
Before joining the Monte Carlo team for the transition to Park MGM, I was the director of group and catering sales at the Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas. I helped lead the sales team to become No. 1 in the company for convention sales while individually being the brand’s top producer that same year. Prior to this, I started my hospitality career in Chicago with Masterplan Inc. where my expertise was in luxury meeting and event planning bringing unforgettable events to incredible destinations all around the world.
Greatest career accomplishment:
I believe my most significant business accomplishment goes back to 2009 when I was working as an event planner (client side of the table) and sold Mandarin Oriental on the idea of me planning their top customer familiarization event for all of their top domestic clients. I curated the entire agenda and the biggest piece was to showcase how Mandarin Oriental, an internationally renowned company for their service culture, was going to create local community involvement and service the community. The week consisted of all of the local treasures, including guided Red Rock tour and exotic car rental fun up and down Las Vegas Boulevard, but the event that the Mandarin colleagues walked away remembering the most was a “Bicycle Build.” I partnered with Project Shero, a Vegas grassroots nonprofit who serviced and cared for children that had never owned their own necessities and especially luxuries to them, such as a bike. As the teams were admiring and appreciating each other’s work, they were surprised by a special appearance of the children that they had just built the bikes for. It was a magical moment for those customers and a trailblazing moment for me as my initial vision left an impression that would change my professional trajectory. The following day I received an urgent request to meet with the General Manager of Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas, and upon arrival, I received an invitation to leave the client side and join their opening hotel team.
I Led Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas as director of sales to the No. 1 sales team honor out of all U.S. and European properties in 2016.
Specific improvement I’ve made:
In 2016, I led the design of one of the top Mandarin Oriental Innovations ideas of building an app that would take all of the hotel systems (photos, money, scheduling, education, etc.) and combine them into one app that would make it easier on the employee experience. I authored the nomination form and executed the sales presentation video that we submitted to the CEO of Mandarin Oriental. The innovation idea was selected as one of the top innovation ideas submitted to Jardines, the parent company of Mandarin Oriental in 2017.
What I’m working on:
What I love most about Park MGM is that this is the most incredible and challenging project I have ever taken on. We have 3,000 rooms to fill, 70,000 square feet of conference space, all of which went under construction starting in 2017. It is a transformation that has never taken place of this magnitude on the Las Vegas strip.
What I do outside of work:
I am genuinely inspired and fueled when I have an opportunity to make a difference. My most prominent community responsibility currently is serving as president of my local alumnae chapter for Kappa Alpha Theta. This opportunity gives me the ability to be a part of making an impact on women of all ages in leadership and community involvement. Some of those opportunities include teaching Strengthfinders Workshops to collegians and organizing alumnae to volunteer and raise money for our local Las Vegas CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) chapter.