How do I become a Senior Account Manager?

Auckland Live Staff Spotlight: Caleb Matafeo

How do I become a Senior Account Manager?

Published: Thursday 23 May 2024

Auckland Live just turned 10! As we mark a decade of bringing the city performing arts and events to create memories that last a lifetime, we will be highlighting the journeys of some of our amazing staff behind the curtain who make the magic happen.

This week we meet Caleb Matafeo.

Caleb Matafeo smiles in front of a colourful mural in the Aotea Centre foyer.

Introduce yourself and what you do.  

My name is Caleb, and I am a Senior Account Manager in the Presenter Services team at Auckland Live.


What is your Auckland Live story, and how did you become a Senior Account Manager?

My connection to the Aotea Centre dates back to the 90’s when my aunty and my mum were a part of the original usher team. I was privileged to attend events from an early age and fell in love with the venue and the shows. Working here was definitely a family affair, and that has been the story for many other families who have worked for and supported this organisation over the years, particularly in the Event Service Attendants team, Housekeeping, Technical Operations, Setup, and Ticketing. I’m proud to be a part of that tradition.

In 2003 I joined the company as an Event Services Attendant and did shift work while working other jobs. I worked as Front of House Supervisor and then in the Finance team as the Records and Archives Administrator before joining the Account Management team in 2008 when my manager went on parental leave and needed work cover. At the time, he was a team of one, and I was only meant to cover him for several weeks, but it quickly became apparent that he needed people in his team, so I joined on a fixed-term contract, which eventually led to a full-time position.


What attributes do you think are important for a Senior Account Manager?

Because you tend to be navigating a space between external clients and internal teams or stakeholders, it is important to operate with integrity, building trust on both sides. You will need that trust, because more often than not you are the one who has to mediate when there is conflict.

Being able to multi-task is also really helpful. Each department specialises in the particular service they deliver, but as an account manager you have to have your finger hovering on the pulse of every aspect of your event, and you’re probably thinking of events you have contracted this week, as well as events you’re trying to contract one or two years out, so your mental load is huge.


What’s the best advice you’ve ever received in terms of your role? 

Your relationships with clients and co-workers will go a long way, so make sure you take time to nurture those relationships. Never underestimate the importance of casual chit-chat and listening to someone’s story.


What would you say to someone wanting to get into Account Management? 

This can be a very rewarding career depending on your passion. I have no desire to be on stage, but I am passionate about supporting people’s passion and this role allows me to do that from behind the scenes.

Our team has a variety of backgrounds ranging from front of house, event planning, ticketing, production, and marketing. The diversity in our team is our strength, and the diversity you offer will be your strength when applying for a position in account management.

Shows and events Caleb is looking forward to:

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