Women's History Month Spotlight: Melanie Stocking
Melanie Stocking, our Senior Manager of Team Travel and Logistics, has worked with the organization for over a decade in multiple capacities. Currently, her responsibilities include making sure your favorite NBA team gets to their destination - comfortably.
It's not as simple as many basketball fans think, with several unexpected changes that come about throughout the course of an 82-game season. Today, Melanie shares her favorite part of working in Sacramento, role models and the best advice she's ever received.
How would you describe your role and responsibilities with the Sacramento Kings?
Hard to believe, but I’m wrapping up my 13th season with the Kings! I’ve been in Basketball Operations for the majority of my time at the Kings and currently hold the title of Senior Manager of Team Travel and Logistics. My main focus is to oversee all things team travel - planes, buses, hotels, per diem, etc. In this position, I travel with the team to ensure that all goes according to plan - and to be there when it doesn’t and for any late changes! In addition to this, I coordinate travel for most of the department, perform administrative work and assist the coaching staff and whoever else may need assistance.
What do you enjoy most about what you do?
I love the behind the scenes when it comes to most anything and this job definitely let's me do that. I’m a pretty detailed and picky person and I like to see all my plans come together and run smoothly for all involved. Of course, in this business, things change and issues arise and you have to be able to jump at a moments notice. I love it! And, I have worked with a lot of great people over the years and have created lasting friendships and a large extended family!
Who have been your biggest role models?
Hands down, my parents have been my biggest role models. I like to joke sometimes that I blame my parents for the work ethic they instilled in me and my siblings instead of credit them because the amount of work we all take on or the manner in which we do that work. But, at the end of the day, I know that it's really credit they deserve. We all watched both of my parents work very hard throughout the years and always put family as a priority. It’s a good mix. Because of that, we are a very close family; we even run a non-profit, RememberAVet.net, and a new business venture, Hobby’s Brewing together!
How do you think companies can strive to be more inclusive to women in the workplace?
Being inclusive of women in the workplace is important for many reasons. Companies can be more inclusive by putting women in leadership positions and having their voices be heard. Mentor women at entry level positions and help them grow to lead departments and companies. When they are succeeding, the company is succeeding!
What advice would you give to other women trying to break into the sports and entertainment industry?
Hard work, determination and good relationships go a long way. I truly believe all three of those aspects have helped me get to the position that I hold today. However, timing can be an important factor too. I started off as an intern in our Community Relations department and got my foot in the door. I loved that department, but there was not a full-time position available when I graduated and that is when I made the move over to the world of Basketball Operations. As an intern, my boss passed along some advice he had received and it stuck with me. He said something along the lines of 'Be the first one in and last one out and make them kick you out each night.' My advice - no job is too little, put in the time, do your work well, and you will be noticed.
How important is it to you to work for an organization that constantly strives to bring greater awareness and equity to women in the workplace?
Having been with the Kings for 13 seasons and being in a very male-dominated space, it is very important to work for an organization that wants to bring awareness and equity to women in the workplace. It’s been fun and nice to see more women join Basketball Operations departments around the league in all types of positions ranging from interns to scouts to Assistant General Managers.