Meet Ciara Manalansan, Sales

Careers

Our Sales Director

Ciara Manalansan

Ciara joined The Ortus Club in 2020 as a project coordinator and swiftly advanced, becoming a team lead in operations before transitioning to her current role as a client director for the APAC sales team. In under two years, her talent for nurturing client relationships, managing cross-functional projects, and securing major deals propelled her growth. 

Tell us about your role at The Ortus Club and how you got there.

I joined The Ortus Club as a project coordinator in 2020. I then progressed to a team lead position and ultimately expressed the idea of transitioning into a more client-facing role, which led me to take the role of account manager. Today, I am a client director in the APAC team.

 

What does a typical day at The Ortus Club look like?

My day usually starts by responding to all the team’s messages I received overnight. Considering I manage projects in Europe and North America as well, these can take a while to go through.

After clearing my inbox, I review the day’s tasks. I make a list that includes responding to clients, addressing sales inquiries, following up on proposals, and sending out new proposals too. I look at whether there’s a good fit for a potential collaboration that aligns with our company’s values and the client’s needs.

A big part of my role is representing our clients internally. The team depends on me to understand what our clients want and need. I’ve mastered this through years of close work with some long-term clients. For new clients who haven’t worked with us before, I take time to answer all their questions thoroughly. I want to guide them through the entire process so they feel as confident in us as our experienced clients do. I also have update calls scheduled to keep our existing clients informed on their event’s progress.

Once I’ve spoken with clients and addressed pressing matters, I shift focus to our logistics team. I ensure they have what they need to bring our clients’ visions to life seamlessly. With the groundwork laid, I might need to travel to Singapore, where many of our major events take place.

It’s really a dynamic, client-focused day filled with communication, coordination, and commitment to exceeding expectations in everyday routine.

 

What’s the most challenging part of your role, and how do you overcome this challenge?

The most challenging part of the role is just really trying to balance everything out. It’s a delicate dance of aligning the client’s visions with our capabilities while pushing the boundaries of what’s possible.

We have worldwide teams who work around the clock to ensure that our clients are satisfied with every detail of every event. While this is extremely efficient for the immediate catering of inquiries and last-minute changes, this unfortunately entails that we work in different timezones.

To overcome this, I’ve learned to adjust my approach depending on who I’m speaking with. It’s about being flexible; understanding preferences and communication styles. Ultimately, we’re committed to delivering the best experiences for clients. It’s a delicate balancing act, but one we embrace. Seeing clients delighted when their vision comes to life is what drives us forward.

 

What’s one achievement you are particularly proud of?

One of the achievements I’m most proud of was signing a larger series of events with a client after one of our internal events.

I used to get anxious before sales calls, worried I might make a mistake or be unable to convey our value effectively. Many uncertainties would swirl in my mind, but one thing I’m very sure of is that our offerings are a great platform for clients to learn more and engage with the audience they want to meet. So, I put a lot of time and effort into building my confidence and working on proposals with the team to show how we can curate every event to fit what every client wants and needs. There’s nothing quite like having a client see the merits of what you’ve proposed and choose you as their trusted partner for the process. From there, It helped me gain confidence and showed me that this is something I can do, and it’s something that little me can do.

I gained the confidence to approach each opportunity with poise, knowing I have the ability to understand a client’s needs and present solutions that resonate. There’s no greater feeling than having a client put their trust in you and your team to bring their vision to life. It’s incredibly rewarding to be chosen as a partner in that process.

I feel like I’ve gained the trust of not just this particular client but all of the clients that now come directly to me, and I feel like I’ve built relationships and have really nurtured them in the last two years that I’ve been in this role. That’s also another achievement that is still ongoing. It’s definitely not, I would say, just a one-time achievement, as I would still continue reaching out to clients, making sure that they’re still happy with what we do with the events that we’re doing and that they’re still getting ROIs from the events that we’re doing so far. A majority of those that have been passed to me are still with auditors, so it gives me some peace to think that, ‘Hey, I’m doing something great,’ and it shows in how our clients value the relationship that we’ve built together with them.

 

What do you like most about working with The Ortus Club?

I still remember when I first started or when I was still applying at The Ortus Club. I found the idea of what The Ortus Club does to be so unique. I haven’t seen it anywhere in traditional marketing; it’s definitely not traditional, which I think is something that drew me into this company in the first place.

At that point in time, I thought that maybe this job wasn’t for me. But as soon as I started getting my own projects, once I had a bit more independence in terms of how I wanted to do guesting and how I wanted to do my outreach, I felt a bit more comfortable in terms of the everyday needs of the job. The RNRs, talking to more people, especially senior executives from all over the world. You don’t get that chance, I would say, to do that in any other job, and more especially in the Philippines, where we’re all very traditional, we put a lot of value in the hierarchy, we put a lot of respect in the more senior people in the company, and it’s just not that open. So something that I appreciate about The Ortus Club is that I have more freedom to do or produce the things that I want, that I want to initiate doing, especially with the executives, or at least, leaders in the company, who are very much open to hearing suggestions, not just from higher-ups or from those senior in the company, but we welcome suggestions from the new hires. We’re quite an open company, and that’s something that I really, really appreciate about The Ortus Club.

On top of that, we’re very young. We’re very innovative. There’s a lot of initiative all throughout, and you can’t really see that in a lot of companies. So it’s quite refreshing to be in an environment where you’re in a room with such talented, smart, and resourceful people as well. It’s really inspiring—especially for myself. I work with multiple people from the operations team, the events team, and all across different departments at The Ortus Club, and I can see a lot of very brilliant people and a lot of very talented people, and it’s inspiring to be working alongside these individuals.

Another thing is that you don’t really get a chance to travel the world with every job that you can get, right? You meet these executives; It’s truly rewarding to witness our guests network for both professional and personal growth at our events. We get to see firsthand the intertwined nature of networking, as many guests find new career opportunities and jobs through the connections made. It’s gratifying when some later become our clients at different companies, allowing us to play a small part in their career journeys. Watching our events facilitate pivotal networking moments that open doors is one of the most rewarding aspects of what we do.


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