Nick Manca is a 27 year old Miami native with a passion for the hospitality business. He’s been with the 11 USA Group for 4 1⁄2 years where his job is to make sure that the guests are receiving the full E11EVEN experience. His goal is to turn that first time guest into a lifetime guest. I had the pleasure of interviewing Nick on how networking is key to success in today’s world. Here’s what he had to say.
Hey Nick! Take us back to the beginning. What’s your story?
Nick: I found a love for the nightlife business when I was young. When I graduated from high school, my dream was to own nightclubs. I made the choice to not attend college, but to start going after my dream and the journey to achieve it.
It’s safe to say I eat, breathe and sleep for my job.
That’s great! Can you tell us how you actually got started?
Nick: Sure, I got started in the hospitality business at the age of 15. During my freshman year in high school I had the opportunity to sell tickets to an all ages event. After doing that for a while I began throwing house parties.The house parties got so big that me and my friends moved them into nightclubs.
After graduating high school, I did 18+ parties for four years, and once I turned 21 I got my first job on South Beach working at Amnesia. South Beach was a great learning experience. Eventually I would meet Zac Bouch and Rob Crosoli who would tell me about E11EVEN. The rest is history..
It seems like networking played a huge role in where you’re at today. Could you give us some tips on networking?
- Always keep business cards with you
- Be curious and ask questions. People love to talk about themselves
- Follow up – the follow up is just as important as the start up
- Make sure you invest your time in the right people, wasted time is worse than wasted money
- Build genuine connections.
Great advice. Do you think you do things different than the rest of your industry? If so, what are they?
Nick: My work ethic and passion for the business is unmatched
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are?
Nick: Yes, my parents; they always pick me up when I’m down, and remind me about why I should be thankful. In addition to my parents, I have to recognize Fresko, Otto, and DTM – without them I wouldn’t be where I am on my journey. I also want to give a shout out to all of my colleagues who keep me motivated.
It’s nice to have those people to motivate you. What lesson did you learn from them?
- I learned that this business can be cut throat, so to speak; not everyone is your friend.
- I also learned to never settle – there is always someone working harder than you.
Those are important lessons. As you have started to see some success what is your definition of it?
Nick: Success is finding your purpose in life, follow your dreams and believe that nothing is impossible if you work hard and stay consistent and focused. Success is also about family and friends, and helping make a difference.
If someone would want to emulate what you have done, what would you suggest are the most important things to do?
Nick: Think about what you want to do in life, have a plan, and get ready to work hard, sacrifice social time and sleep, and never stop believing.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
Nick: I want to be a partner with the 11 USA Group.
Why do you think building a network is key to success?
Nick: Networking is key to becoming a successful professional. The more contacts you have, the more you will stand out in a competitive environment. Networking will help you develop and improve your skill set, stay on top of the latest trends in your industry, keep a pulse on the job market, meet prospective mentors, partners, and clients, and gain access to the necessary resources that will foster your career development as well as life.