Experienced in event planning for NGOs and youth organisations, Danie joined The Ortus Club after seeing the passionate young professionals in the company set themselves up for success through sheer hard work and determination. Today, she’s a Team Lead and managing a team of project coordinators leading their own projects.
Tell us something about yourself and how you got started with The Ortus Club.
Since high school and college, I’ve always been interested in events and planning. After my graduation, I was involved with the development sector and was part of a youth engagement program doing entrepreneurship practices. Then, I got to know The Ortus Club through a Facebook Ad, and a mutual friend introduced me to the company.
Tell us about your role. What’s your strategy to get things done?
As a Team Lead, I’m part of the Operations team. I manage a group of 5–6 guesting directors who manage their own projects. My job is to ensure those projects do well and their guests have a great Ortus experience.
My dad gave me the foundation of my strategy to get things done. List the top three priorities for the day. You’ll gain momentum to know what to put first. It’s a good indicator of getting all things done.
Can you name anyone who has had a lasting, positive impact on your career? What did they do for you?
First is my dad. He took it upon himself to join different industries and take different jobs in his younger days. So, he had about 2–3 career lives as I grew up. When it’s about work, he acts like a mentor whom I can be honest with. He talks to me about his experiences and how I could apply them to my situation, making it easier for me to handle difficult situations better. As someone who has had a diverse background in different fields, I learned a lot from him, and he’s helped me have a mature outlook on my career. He validates my experiences and knows how I keep improving myself and my processes.
Second, is the founder of an NGO during my college internship. She was a person who always knew what to do next, a visionary. As an environmentalist, she told me that the grind doesn’t stop. So, she’s given me the inspiration to be determined, and she taught me a lot about resilience and grit. I apply everything she taught me in every aspect of my work and life. I have to keep pushing despite anything that happens.
Last is a fellow workmate in The Ortus Club. She has been there since I started training. She’s also my number one support system, teaching me everything I need to know. Because she believed in me, I know that I can do it. As someone who sees the best side of me, I want to keep improving because she invested in and trusted me.
How’s your experience of The Ortus Club changed since joining the company?
When I first came in, The Ortus Club was in the middle of a huge transition. I saw how everyone evolved, stepped up, and took accountability for their roles. Today, we have a system that we can trust and grow. What’s great about these changes is that our core values are still the same. I fell in love with The Ortus Club because of the knowledge sharing, the impact, and being part of conversations.
What keeps you here?
The community makes me stay. It’s rare to find a company culture so alive that you feel part of the conversation and the implementation of strategies. Working alongside young, progressive, independent, and talented people — it’s exciting to be around that. When the work gets challenging, you can always ask for help, and they’ll do their best to work things out with you. I love how everyone is in their 20s. We all have that ambition and drive to make something great.
Why should others follow (and join)?
Whether you’re fresh out of university, lack experience, or have tenure, The Ortus Club is an excellent opportunity to achieve progress and a new start in your career. They help you grow, forcing you to go out of your comfort zone to achieve great things.
What’s been your greatest challenge in the company?
My transition from a Project Coordinator to a Team Lead. It’s a steep learning curve, and it’s easy to say that you’re going to manage, but it’s another thing to do that day-to-day. I learned to face my mistakes and let them teach me. The only way to get better is to get insight from other people who have been in your position before.
What’s been your proudest moment?
My proudest moment was the end of Q1. We hit all of our numbers, and my team members learned how to improve on their projects. Even though they’re moving on to different teams, they still value what I’ve taught them, which proves our connection and relationship. I’m happy to have empowered them and instilled in them the confidence to handle their projects.
“Maximize and make use of all available resources. Take advantage of learning and gaining more knowledge from experienced professionals.”
How do you see yourself growing in Ortus?
I see myself becoming a reliable and senior member of the operations team. I want to be a better manager and leader.
What is your leadership style, and how was it like starting at The Ortus Club?
My leadership style is to be kind yet firm. I don’t want to be a leader that doesn’t care about the well-being of my members. Instead, I want to check on them and see if they can perform their best with an excellent work-life balance. Then, I make sure they do their jobs at a reasonable pace.
What is a piece of knowledge you consider invaluable and hope to share with as many people as possible?
Maximise and make use of all available resources. Take advantage of learning and gaining more knowledge from experienced professionals. Being in a dynamic environment, The Ortus Club helps us do that by providing us with as many tools as possible, giving us the necessary tips and tricks to work more efficiently and converse with as many people as possible.
What’s your favourite thing to do after work?
I like to sit down and have dinner with my parents every night. They’re why I’m able to think this well at my age, and we discuss many topics openly. Bonding with my family and travelling with them on my days off helps me stay in touch with what I have to do at work to achieve that work-life balance.