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Growing, Speaking, and Knowing Our Why: 2019 Year in Review

By: Ben Zapata

2019 was a formative year for Omega and for me personally. Not only was it a successful year in the traditional sense—we provided valuable concierge services to our clients and we grew our employee and corporate concierge offerings—but we also grew in other ways. As the year comes to a close, now seems like a good time to recap our year and look ahead to 2020.

Sharing Our Culture

In February of this year, I was invited to speak at a Prosper Jefferson seminar that focused on Human Resources. As is the format for the series of events hosted by the Jefferson Chamber and JEDCO, I was one among several speakers all a topic—HR in this case—from different angles.

While the other speakers presented about hiring, company policies, and drugs in the workplace, I talked about employee retention. In fact, I titled my speech, “Holding on to Talent Once You’re Lucky Enough to Find it.” I talked about Omega’s three principles of employee retention:

  • Community. We work together, and we support each other.
  • Vulnerability. I gain my employees’ trust by showing vulnerability.
  • Purpose. To get staff buy-in, I want them to feel connected to Omega and why Omega exist.

I enjoyed this opportunity to speak, and I hope to have more in the future.

Luke Knowing His Why

I wrote about this instance in a recent blog post, but I am so proud of Luke, I need to share this again. The short version of the story is that an Omega valet named Luke went the extra mile in showing care and compassion to a patient at Ochsner Kenner. Luke showed that he does so much more than park cars, and that he understands his “why.” All of us at Omega are proud of Luke, and that he showed this level of kindness.

Getting Around Town

Omega was fortunate this year to attend and sponsor a variety of events in and around New Orleans. Two that come to mind are:

  • The October “Ahead of the Curve” HR event. The event was hosted by NFP and focused on employee engagement. I enjoyed listening to the speakers and panelists discuss topics including how to create an engaging environment, diversity & inclusion, and cyber security. I also enjoyed meeting the HR professionals, business leaders, and members of the New Orleans business community.
  • The Health Innovators Finale in March. This was the culminating event in the months-long New Orleans Health Innovators Challenge. It was inspiring to hear about the inspiring innovations taking place in the healthcare space.

The Omega Community

As I mentioned above, I believe in creating a community at Omega. I’m not naive enough to think that our employees will all be best friends outside of work, but building trust among employees makes our team stronger and our collective performance better. A few examples of outside-of-work community-building include our company crawfish boil, a day of serving our community while volunteering at a food bank, and running a 5K race together. Completing the race was a personal goal of mine, and I was honored to have my staff’s support in achieving it.

A Home for Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurs’ Organization is a community of entrepreneurs who come together to talk, to learn from one another, and to offer advice to others. I joined EO Louisiana this year, and I am glad I did. There is something to be said for hearing from my peers. I’m not afraid to ask questions, and in a lot of cases, there is someone in the room who has experienced something similar and can share their advice. I am excited that the Louisiana chapter of EO is the fastest-growing in the world, and I am proud to serve on the Board of Directors as the New Orleans Community Chair.

Economic Gardening

Omega’s participation in the Louisiana Economic Gardening Initiative came at the end of the year, and I am still participating in the program. I am excited to work with the market research and growth strategy consultants as part of the program, and I am grateful that such programs exist. I’ll share more about my experience with the initiative, and I look forward to implementing the experts’ recommendations into Omega’s growth plans.


I believe that the end of the year is a time to celebrate what we have accomplished, show gratitude to those who helped us get there, and gain momentum heading into the new year. Thank you to all who contributed to Omega’s success in 2019. See you in 2020!

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