Sofie Dahl

Crowd Safety Manager at RF Experience

Sofie lives and breathes music, waking up to it in every room of her house. She is hugely proud of what she has achieved as a young woman in management in this rock and roll industry.

Sofie works with both planning and safety operations at events of all sizes, as well as advisor for organisers and festivals.

She also worked as Dansk Live’s representative looking at the challenge of developing a national frame work for safety plans, including event risk assessments and emergency plans. The guidance was published by the Danish National Police in 2015.

Sofie holds FdA & BA (Hons) Degree in Crowd Safety Management from Bucks New University.

Welcome to the Leadership Interview, Sofie

How do you start your day?

I start my day with music. Before I leave my bed, I have turned on the music in the whole house. That can be both good and bad since my Sonos speakers just play what I listened to last… and that can be a pretty rough awakening with Pantera

What was your first job and what is the worst job you’ve ever done?

I delivered newspapers back when I was 13 – in all kinds of weather. I hated it, but I learned from home. That hard work is necessary to get what you want. And I wanted a computer

What advice would you give to others about furthering their careers?

I feel that if you work hard, and believe in what you do, you can go a long way. I’ve been very passionate about most jobs I’ve had, and all have turned out well.

I need to identify with what I’m doing and for who. I can’t be working in a company that has a completely different opinion on things than I do.

Of course there will be differences, but if I have to carry out the job and truly own it, it has to be compatible with who I am.

You will be able to do a better job, if you believe in what you do.

Who inspires you and why?

A lot of people inspire me! Fortunately ????

My parents are a major inspiration – they represent so many good things and have always been there for me. They have had balanced demanding jobs for my whole life as, as well as the family and that’s inspiring.

Another inspiration for me, is actually my nearest colleague and leader Morten Therkildsen, who can work for long periods of time with passion and engagement, where others have to give up. He is still supportive and has the ability to manage his team and make it perform.

Sometimes I don’t understand how he does it, but it is inspiring and makes me work a little harder.

Do you think a talent to lead is nature or nurture?

I think talent to lead is something that comes easier to some people, than others.

Some people slip in to a leadership role with grace and make people follow them easily – others have to learn and adjust to it gradually.

I don’t know which category I am in, but I am still learning!

How can a leader fail? Do you have a personal example?

I think we’ve all failed at elements of leadership at some point – I actually hope so, because there is so much to learn from it.

In general, I believe that leadership is about making others do great and sharing the success with them.

In that sentence, the difference between a “boss” and a “leader” become obvious to me.

What are your greatest strengths and weaknesses?

I think I’m good at working with people – both audiences and colleagues, and I enjoy it. Enjoying it probably makes it easier to be good at. I am impatient regarding most things. I try to hide it when working with people, but really it annoys me when things are too slow, or I have to wait too long for things. Most things… a bus, an artist, decisions, other people or my next meal.

What do you find most challenging about being a leader?

There is a lot of challenges in the role, but challenges do not have to be negative. It also makes the job interesting and allows it to develop.

In the beginning I thought my age (I was 25) and being a woman, would be an obstacle when working in the rock and roll industry.

But I chose to ignore that feeling, and work to show that I know what I’m doing. Ten years have passed and I think it would have been a mistake to have let it be an excuse when things get tough. My age and gender can just as easily be an advantage when it comes to leadership – for example when working with other women, that tells me that they see me as an inspiration and that it makes them more confident that they can become (young) leaders as well. That makes me very happy.

What are you most proud of?

I am very proud of our staff, when I see that all we have tried to teach them about psychology and positive dialogue is used and works for them.

And also when they work long stressful hours at a shows with a wild audience, and still manage to smile, even though it has been raining for the last couple of hours.

I was also very proud when I finished my degree (Crowd Safety Management) from Bucks University after some tough years battling to manage a full-time job with a heavy workload. Also,  university studies abroad at the same time as illness in my nearest family. It seemed impossible, but with a lot of effort, I made it.

What’s your biggest self-indulgence?

I really enjoy traveling to new places – and I do it as much as I can. When that’s not possible, I can settle for chocolate.

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