Melissa Smith
VP of HR, Amphitheaters and Theaters | Venue Nation

With the growth of the live entertainment business comes opportunity, for staff as well as employers to empower that staff and attract top talent.

“It was truly special this year to see Live Nation increase base wages to $20 an hour for our permanent hourly staff at our indoor venues as part of the On the Road Again program,” says Melissa Smith, vice president of human resources for Live Nation’s Venue Nation division. “These base wages are standard for all of our venues across the country and are over 250% higher than the federal minimum wage.”

She says new venues in new markets means more opportunity.

“With the additional venues and new markets added to our group in the past year like Vibrant Music Hall in Waukee, Iowa, it’s evident the live music experience continues its forward momentum,” she said. “I’m particularly excited for the opening of Brooklyn Paramount in New York this spring.

“We’re looking forward to adding new venues in the coming years, which creates advancement opportunities for our current and future crew members.”

The future continues to look more diverse and equitable, she says.

“I am thrilled to be able to say that we have a lot of powerhouse women on our Venue Nation team,” she said. “Our leadership team has done a fantastic job ensuring that women have a seat at the table and that we’re supporting career advancement for women in the division. The venue business continues to grow and evolve as the fan demand for live shows increases. I am particularly excited about the investments we are making in learning and development to grow the next generation of venue leaders.”

In line with the entrepreneurial spirit that started Live Nation as a concert promotions powerhouse, Smith says she encourages new staff to take chances.

“It’s OK to fail, so long as you learn from it,” she said. “I often refer to a favorite quote of mine from (author) Caroline Myss. ‘Always go with the choice that scares you most because it’s the one that is going to help you grow.’”


Back To The 2024 Women Of Live