Meet our people : Stephanie Jayko of Knock Out Productions
This week the Women in Event Tech spotlight is shining on Stephanie Jayko, Event Producer & Manager at Knock Out Productions.
We love featuring amazing #womenineventtech - whether that's women starting event tech companies, programming event tech innovations, or designing breathtaking event installations - we want to celebrate you all. Whatever the tech, wherever the event, whoever the woman - we're getting behind you to share stories, meet up, inspire and connect.
If you'd like to join in the Q&A series, please send us an email and say hello.
Now let's meet Stephanie from Dallas TX -
Hello, I'm Stephanie Jayko and I am the Founder & CEO of Knock Out Productions.
I actually started my career as a theater nerd. I went to school and got my degree in theatrical production and management and spent my entire college career doing every production I could get my hands on. I loved being backstage and getting to help create the world of the show. After graduation I was lucky enough to spend several years working for a few different theater companies in their production offices, and as a Stage and Production Manager.
While working as the Production Coordinator for a regional theater in Dallas, TX, I was asked to help with the production aspects of several fundraising galas. I had never considered events as a career option, but found that I really enjoyed the work and was excited to do more of it. I left my theater days behind and jumped full force into the events world. I spent over a year freelancing and working with event staffing agencies doing every job imaginable - from registration and transportation coordination to stage hand work and everything in between.
Then in 2015 I decided to open Knock Out Productions, an Event Production and Management Company. Since then I have been working with production companies and clients around the United States to create, produce and manage events of all shapes and sizes. I spend a lot of time on a headset "talking to the voices in my head" as a Technical or Show Director, but I always have several projects going that require me to wear a myriad of different hats. I still love being behind the scenes and keeping my hands in the tech world, and the events industry keeps me busy doing what I love.
Q. What do you love about event tech?
A. I love that event tech is always changing. The tech industry in general is constantly evolving and progressing. There is always something new to learn. It's also a space where creativity is not only encouraged, but necessary. No idea is too big or too crazy. It's honestly a profession where the sky is the limit!
Q. How can women make an impact in the event tech space?
A. Women are the event tech industry's biggest secret weapon. We are so often underestimated that we are perfectly poised to make a huge impact simply by being amazing at our jobs. Being creative, innovative and technically savvy is what we do, and we're great at it! When we are given the chance to show that, we're bound to shine. When you know you have what it takes to do the job and do it well, don't take no for an answer. Make sure your voice is heard and show them what you're capable of.
Q. What are some of your personal favorite tools or products to use?
A. I have several things I use every day!
- I love Show Flow. It's a web based system for all things related to your event (document storage), as well as a real time show flow updater that you can share with all of your team in real time. No more having to print off a new version every time something changes.
- I'm a big Sennheiser fan. I fell in love with my studio headphones and now I take them with me everywhere!
- I use and love Evo Shift gimbal for on the go video production, and it's amazing. It's compact and the functionality is really user friendly, so I can hand it off to team members that may not be as tech savvy and still end up with a great product.
- On the business side of things Hootsuite, Quickbooks and Google Suite are honestly my lifesavers for everything operations.
Q. What's your one piece of advice to other women in event tech?
A. My biggest piece of advice for women in event tech is to just get out there and do a little bit of everything! The more you can expose yourself to different equipment, people, situations and jobs, the more value you will add to any team. Employers and clients alike are looking for the most value out of an investment, and you can give them just that by being a one stop shop for tech. Being multi disciplinary and being able to fulfil may needs is what makes you indispensable.
Thank you Stephanie!
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