Meet Jessica Rooks, Regional Sales and Marketing Manager
Started as Event Coordinator, 2015
When asked what led to her current role of Kings southeast Regional Sales and Marketing Manager, Jessica Rooks says it's all about believing in what she’s doing - and holding herself accountable.
“I’m a bit of a closet perfectionist,” Jessica says. “My motivation is to excel and do a good job for me. It’s not about the recognition or the accolaides. I just love being challenged and hate feeling stagnant.”
‘A Leap of Faith’
It was this love of a challenge that led her to join the Kings family back in 2015, yet not for lack of other opportunities: Armed with a degree in speech language pathology, Jessica had already had a nearly 5 year career as a pediatric speech pathologist in private practice. Yet something about the work didn’t quite click for her and it left her wanting more.
“I loved what I did, but it was a very narrow track, the same thing day in and day out,” she says. “I was looking for a change of pace and was ready for a leap of faith.”
After a trying her hand at a few other jobs, this leap of faith came in the form of reconnecting with her roots in the service industry: A regular at the then-newly opened Kings in Raleigh, North Carolina encouraged her to apply for an open Event Coordinator position, resulting in a quick hiring. While Jessica admits she was at that point unfamiliar with Kings - describing the job as “daunting, but rewarding” - something about the environment and atmosphere drew her in.
“I’d worked in the service industry all through college, as a server, host and bartender, so there was this feeling of familiar and comfort going into it,” Jessica says. “But it was also exciting since it was a extremely different concept of ‘sales’ than I was used to, so I had to learn a lot.”
‘What’s More Fun Than Having Fun?’
The learning curve wasn’t daunting for Jessica - quite the opposite: She quickly threw herself into every aspect of her role, learning quickly what it meant to “sell” a memorable evening or event at Kings.
“I believe when it comes to sales, you’re only as good as the product. It has to be something you believe in, something you can get behind,” she says. “Kings makes it easy because you’re basically selling ‘fun.’ What’s more fun than having fun?”
Jessica's knack for taking on challenges and motivating the people around her quickly paid off: A role as Event Coordinator soon evolved into Event Sales Manager, with a well-deserved promotion to Senior Event Sales Manager coming in October of 2016. Along the way, Jessica focused on refining what, in her mind, made for the perfect - and perfectly memorable - party or event at Kings.
“It’s all about building that connection,” Jessica says. “Here in Raleigh there’s no shortage of great restaurants and fun things to do. Our job isn’t just to provide great food and entertainment, but to be the experts when it comes to your particular event.”
For Jessica, that means being the ultimate guide and advocate for a guest looking to have an event at Kings: From that first contact through making a reservation and seeing the event go off without a hitch, she sees it as her job to oversee all aspects of the events, staying in constant communication.
Jessica found this work incredibly rewarding: The mix of the everyday challenge of marketing events that would resonate with guests with getting the team motivated to really knock it out of the park with each passing day was well suited for her unique brand of self-motivated excellence. And Jessica’s managers and peers quickly took notice, resulting in a promotion in 2018 to the role of Regional Sales and Marketing manager to the entire southern arm of Kings. In her estimation, that initial leap of faith in moving away from the specific, narrow path of her previous career has paid off - and then some.
“What is so exciting about jumping into an opportunity at Kings is the potential for growth and development,” she says. Yet even with her own self-proclaimed perfectionism, Jessica is modest about what she considers to be the key to her success with the company.
“The support system from the management team is really amazing,” Jessica insists. “There’s so much personalization: They let you dictate what you want to develop into and where you want to go. People always talk about how there should be no ceiling at a place you work, but at Kings it’s really true. You can continue to grow with the company, reinvent and empower yourself, not just get the job done.”
To be continued... because our team's stories are always growing!
Are you ready to carve out your own path alongside a team of hard-working, supportive go-getters? Our team at Kings is always growing and looking for ambitious, inquisitive people to join the family. Apply today to get started.