Published on June 5th, 2011 | by mrgrumpyninja4
12 Rounds- The Deluxe Edition
It seems to me that recently the business world has become increasingly focused on the influence of what we call the fairer sex, with plenty of stats showing companies with women in positions of power perform better. Its also often said that you attract more flies with honey, so hey it can’t hurt the hit rate to have some prettier faces on here, not that the CJC lads are not pretty in their own right.
I therefore officially welcome you to Ladies week here at MGNinc. All of this weeks interviews will showcase Ladies who are out there making things happen and chasing their dreams.
I wanted to start ladies week with someone who I think is a great example of the classic Kiwi go getter, and it doesn’t hurt that in her own right shes probably one of the best known iden”tit’ ties (yes..pun intended ) around due to her long term involvement in the promotions business and also the odd tabloid appearance. She doesn’t really need much of an introduction, Ladies and Gentlemen….. Miss Deluxe herself…..please welcome to 12 rounds, the lovely Michaiah Simmons.
Thanks for taking the time out to do this, I know you’re busy and your phone doesn’t seem to stop going off, so we’ll get started …… tell me, who is Michaiah Simmons, seems like you’ve been around a while (I mean that in a nice way), but you went from being one of the girls, to running the girls right?
I wouldn’t know where to start with that question – who am I….. I guess you could say I am just someone trying to make a success of my life in many different area’s. I have lived a crazy and exciting life and have many interests including business, designing, cooking, exercise and health / nutrition. I have been in the promotions industry over 8 years now! Actually nearly a decade haha that makes me feel old!!! I started out doing promo and modeling here and in Aussie and was doing it full time for several years.
Your business is Deluxe events, what does it do or specialise in, or are there lots of strings to the bow?
I established Deluxe Events and Promotions with the idea of creating a one stop shop for people looking for event management and promotional models. There are many strings to my bow so to speak – I really enjoy doing the full event production including venue, decor, catering, entertainment etc and of course the beautiful Deluxe Models always do an amazing job for my clients. I also do custom clothing – uniforms and costumes.
I believe your expanding, and you have a bit of design fetish going on? Whats the story with that?
Yes, I’m slowly moving my business interests into Australia (in my world domination scheme muahahaha) …. but still keeping my main focus here in NZ as I believe I have a bit more to achieve here before putting too much focus on off shore.
I do love design yes – its my passion – I decided at the age of 11 that I was going to be a fashion designer and taught myself how to sew and started making designer ranges for my sisters Barbies! I have had other labels in the past but now finally living my dream of doing a high end label – mostly dresses. I cant wait to show the range once its all ready and see what everyone thinks! MJS Design link
As I mentioned earlier, you initially competed in some of the 4 & R events etc, what have you seen change, apart from your own role?
I did start out competing in a lot of the comps around – things have gotten a lot more PC of late – in a good way – the girls don’t seem to feel they need to flash as much flesh which is nice. [MGN- photo inserted for statement irony ]
Speaking of which, I imagine your events job can be quite a challenge,with a few egos and demands to manage? How do you do that?
Hmmm most of my girls are lovely and I certainly don’t put up with any princess behavior ! It has been a learning curve in how to deal with multiple personalities at once but I think I have it down pat now.
What are your favorite, and least favorite parts of your job?
My favorite part is the adrenaline that comes with putting on an event. Its so intensive and only certain people are wired to be able to deal with that but I love it. My least favorite part is when clients don’t pay their bill and also when it is quiet ! I thrive on being just a little too busy so when there are quiet patches in my business it really does my head in! I want to be busy 24/7 haha. I am pretty proud that Deluxe won a peoples choice event staff award in 2010.
Whats the funniest thing you have seen happen during one of your events?
I have seen quite a few sights to be sure – I really love having a laugh with the girls back stage or behind the scenes it helps lighten the mood! I do remember one young guy must of been all of about 15, he was in absolute awe at one of the model searches, I think it was the first time he had seen half naked women haha!! . His face was priceless.
What about the most cringe worthy? Ever had a girl break down, or cry or just lose it? (apart from my little mishap with the results)
Yes there have been tears and dramas for sure – that is inevitable I guess. In terms of cringe worthy some of the girls you see doing promo that really shouldn’t be (none of my girls of course) I mean good on them for giving it a go but they should really do some “personal grooming” (smiles) if they want to be taken seriously.
You’ve worked with quite a few girls over the years at events, do you have any favorites?
Yes I have my stars who really are the whole package! They are very hard to find! It amazes me how many girls have such bad work ethics or just no common sense but there are some that really stand out and have the looks, brains, personality, common sense / street smarts etc….
What advice would you give to girls considering entering your comps,or looking to pick up promo work?
Firstly you must know you can handle criticism – you can be sure someone will say something negative to you along the way (out of jealousy mostly), secondly personality is a must! You will come across every kind of person from nice and encouraging to nasty and negative and everyone else in between…. you must be able to laugh off remarks of a sexual nature and not be reactive to comments. Thirdly ensure you have a tan – not orange or really dark but something there so you don’t look like a ghost (unless that is your thing and you have amazing creamy skin which also looks great) and don’t be naive and think you can get away with eating all the pies and ice cream and still look good in skimpy lycra! A work out never did anyone harm nor did eating healthy for that matter….. also all the details such as hair, make up, nails should not be under estimated!
How do girls, and I think you now also have Male models on the books approach you?
Via email is best, usually I ask that people send in a portfolio first and I can work from there. Its not an easy business and not everyone is going to make it, and even if you do, its all about what the client booking the job wants, so there is no guarantee of any work. [click Deluxe for info]
I read somewhere that you are rated as one of the most entrepreneurial young business women around, how did you set about making your mark and standing out?
I have actually worked for myself since I was 18. I am not afraid to give things a go and definitely not afraid of hard work. I have worked 6-7 days a week for most of the last 10 years and really thrive off achieving things. I want to be respected as a business woman and create a global businesses in several areas. I really want to help young people especially young women as they go through the hard teenage years of trying to establish their place in this crazy world! I would love to be inspirational to people and help them see that there is hope for them. If I can do something with my life then everyone can! I came from nothing – literally everything I have achieved and everything I have, I have worked hard for and I am proud of that. No one is responsible for where I am now other than myself and no one can say that I have been handed anything on a plate that is for sure!
Lastly , tell me something about Michaiah Simmons that I dont know?
Ummmmmmm that is actually a hard one - pretty much I am an open book – its all out there – everyone knows pretty much everything about me!
Well, I am the oldest of 7 children and I lived in caravans for several years when I was younger, I also trained in competitive gymnastics from age 5-11 and was doing 40 hours a week by the time I was pulled out! I have traveled a little and my favorite place I have been to so far is India [MGN- explains why you feel so at home at 4& R], I have not drunk alcohol for 8 years and I have never done drugs, oh and I have two nick names – Mishaker and Cherub….
And your cup size???
GRRRRRRRRRRR…….I could tell you but I’d have to kill you !! [MGN- ok so she didn’t actually say that, but it seemed an amusing way to end this ]
So thats 12 rounds, done and dusted with one of the most driven young women I have ever met. You’ll note that there are a number of exclamation points through out this interview, and that is purely because Michaiah is nothing if not passionate when expressing her thoughts.
I have to admit, I’m the first to perhaps dismiss girls doing promo as having not much upstairs…..but let this interview serve as a warning world…you just never know who the next up and coming young business women might be.
To quote a large black woman off american TV…..”You Go Girl” !