As we continue to commemorate Black History Month, we had the privilege to sit down with Jameela Douglas, Sales and Marketing Executive at RCP London Events, whose remarkable journey within the hospitality sector is a testament to perseverance, passion, and dedication.
Jameela's journey: from passion to profession
Jameela shares her journey, stating: “My journey in the industry began in 2013 when I chose to study a PG Diploma in Events management, Marketing & Communication, which included a 3-month internship where I experienced my first corporate hospitality in a restaurant and events venue. Through that, I found my passion for venues and events and worked in various sales roles in restaurants, hotels, and now venues.”
Overcoming challenges and promoting diversity
Reflecting on her experiences, Jameela candidly shares: "I’ve faced some challenges over the years in the industry as a Black woman and have grown to learn how to address issues head-on while remaining respectful.”
Emphasizing the importance of diversity, she adds: "The best way to overcome such challenges, I would say, is by working hard and being intentional in your role.
However, this can sometimes be difficult if you work with people who cannot relate to you, hence why inclusion and diversity are very important.”
Inspiration from home: a legacy of hospitality
Jameela draws inspiration from her mother's journey, saying: "My mum has been in the hospitality industry since before I was born. Born and raised in Sierra Leone, she learned the art of cooking using fresh ingredients and grew a passion. She has owned multiple catering businesses, including a mobile catering van, which she built from scratch with a kitchen, we would trade at various events, from fun fairs to festivals and private events.”
Encouraging learning and awareness
In her recommendations for learning about Black women's contributions, Jameela encourages utilising online resources: “These days everything is online, however, I do follow some great Instagram pages by amazing Black women like Bola Sol, a financial advisor, who also uses her platform to share other women's experiences in relatable topics.”
Empowering through mentorship and growth
Jameela envisions a future where mentorship and professional development programmes are embedded within organisations, stating: “It would be nice to have a mentorship programme within the organisation where not only Black women but women of all races can strengthen and learn from each other to ultimately have an opportunity for professional and career growth."
Looking ahead: a vision of leadership and entrepreneurship
In her aspirations for the future, Jameela shares: "In the next 5 years, I see myself as part of a management team, mentoring others and growing my business successfully. I have two beautiful boys, so I want to set an example for them of work ethic and for them to always do what makes them happy.”
Celebrating Jameela's impact and Black excellence
Jameela's journey exemplifies the spirit of perseverance and passion that defines Black excellence within the hospitality industry. Her dedication, resilience and commitment to fostering diversity serve as an inspiration to all. As Black History Month draws to a close, let us continue to honour and uplift the exceptional contributions of women like Jameela.