For this weeks Ladies We Love series we caught up with the superstar that is Tara Miller to talk about all things events and her new business venture!
Firstly Tara, can you tell us 3 words that describe you the best?
Enthusiastic, curious and a bit of a dork.
Where is your favourite place in the world, and why?
Gosh where to start! I love London in the summer – it has this magical vibe about it, where you believe anything is possible. But I also love being on my parent’s farm (in Casterton) in the spring and seeing the vibrant colours and beauty of the countryside. Geelong has to be my favourite place to live though; I love the relaxed lifestyle and café culture here!
You’ve already got a tone of impressive jobs on your resume! When did you decide you wanted to work in event management?
When I was at university I did an events management placement with King Performance in Melbourne and loved every minute of it! I was hooked and have been chasing the ‘event high’ ever since.
What sparked your interest to become an events coordinator?
Events have a special magic about them – whether it be raising money for a great cause, bringing people together at a family day, sporting event, conference, expo or celebrating a special occasion such as a wedding. It’s a privilege to work in events and I love being a part of the framework that brings it all together and creates the platform for the magic to happen.
What is your favourite thing about working in events?
The people you meet and work with. Events is an industry which is always changing and has a great bunch of people working within it which means you get to meet and work with fantastic clients, suppliers, volunteers and other event managers. Also the satisfaction at the end of an event that has gone well is a pretty great feeling also.
What would be your favourite type of event?
So far my favourite events are sporting events (I have a soft spot for sport and completed a Sports Management degree at uni). Seeing people complete the Eureka Climb or finish the Melbourne Marathon is pretty amazing. For me events are all about a great atmosphere and it’s hard to find a better atmosphere than the finish line of an event where people have trained and worked really hard to get there.
What was the best event you’ve been to, or helped organise?
The best event I’ve been to was when I worked at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and was lucky enough to get a ticket to the closing ceremony. No words can describe how amazing that was with the vibe, music and overall atmosphere! I mean the Spice Girls came out on mini’s ….you couldn’t wipe the grin off my face for months! So great!
You’re now starting up your own business, can you tell us about your venture with Tara Miller Events?
The best way to describe Tara Miller Events is as event enthusiasts. We love events and all that they entail – if you’ve got an event which you need managed from concept to completion, if you have all the pieces ready but just need someone to put it together or you’ve been given to job of organising the office Christmas party and want some assistance then we can help!
When and why did you decide to start Tara Miller Events?
Around two months ago an opportunity arose within the Geelong events market for me to start up my own business so I would’ve been crazy not to have taken it. Having my own business allows gives me the opportunity to work and collaborate with a wide range of other event/marketing professionals and to work on projects which I’m passionate about.
What are your hopes for the future with your new business?
To work and continue working with great clients and event professionals to put on amazing events. I’d also like to see Geelong represented as a great event go-to location. We’ve got amazing suppliers, venues and landscape in Geelong and I’d like to see this used more to bring together people in community events or to bring big business conferences into town. We’re a far cheaper and more scenic location for events than Melbourne so I’d like to see Geelong utilised more for events and the local community to get behind this.
You’ll be working collaboratively with us at Circus Media as well as at Tara Miller Events, what appealed to you the most about working with Circus Media?
Circus Media holds all the values, which represent people I like to work with – they’re a hard working team with great ideas who are keen to work collaboratively, they have a fantastic energy and are a lot of fun. They’re also damn good at what they do so for me it’s a no-brainer that I’d want to work collaboratively with them on every opportunity.
What are your goals for events at Circus Media?
To continue to strengthen and add value for the Circus Media clients. I love that clients can come to Circus Media as a one-stop-shop and know that they are getting a quality service and product without having to shop around and look for a marketing professional and events professional etc.
We’ve got Olympic Fever coming up to the Rio Olympic Games! You lived in London for two years, and was appointed Fleet dispatch team leader, organised the travel, event management, planning, event logistics and more at the 2012 London Olympics. Can you tell us about this experience?
Working on the London 2012 Olympics was such a fantastic opportunity. When I first began my position; the role of Fleet Dispatcher Team Leader and depot operations were very much in the development phase so it was fantastic to help formulate the dispatch teams role. I was lucky because the depot was made up of people for such a wide variety of backgrounds, ages, nationalities and experience and not so much events so not only did I get to meet and work with these amazing people but there was also a great opportunity to step up, pull up my sleeves and get some great leadership and broad event transport experience within all aspects of the depot and not just dispatch.
Do you have any advice for people who want to work overseas?
Do it! Event work can be hard to come by but just the experience of living and working outside of your comfort zone is a great life experience. I also tried to work in places and undertake roles, which I wouldn’t have done in Australia (Harrods and Tiffany & Co.). Via this I meet amazing people and found myself in situations I’d never have expected (hello – trying to work out the logistics of flying a whole fresh salmon to Italy!) and developed skills which has helped me to be a great events professional such as dealing with challenging requests and customer service. Harrods works to a motto that ‘nothing is impossible’ so that is something that has really stuck with me.
Do you have any advice for people who want to start their own business?
Haha I’m still finding my feet myself! So far what I’d say is chat and meet with as many people who you can – you’d be surprised how supportive and helpful people are and the amazing tips and advice you can get from within your existing network. Also stop doubting yourself and just get started – you don’t know what will happen until you try. Life’s too short to be left wondering!
Lastly, what’s the number one thing on your bucket list?
Next on my list is to complete a marathon. I’m a casual (and slightly lazy) runner but would love to finally master my motivation and mind to get myself across the line of a marathon…it’s been on the list for a while so I’m hoping to build some fitness and tick it off next year.