when Mark Tawara, BBA ’91, met marketing student Tiffany Tabbal, BBA ’08, at the 2008 Business Night, nor the University of Hawaii At the Mānoa Shidler College of Business, the student could have predicted it was the start of a business relationship that would eventually end with them working together as co-owners of a successful marketing, management and technology business several years later .
Tawara always selected the marketing and management option when she volunteered her time as a mentor at Business Night, Shidler College’s flagship student event that pairs professionals in the field with current students for an evening of mentorship and fun while they know what’s there. store their future professional trajectories. It was at this event that he met Tabbal and was instantly “impressed by his communication skills, poise and personality”.
“He made a great first impression and I knew he would be very successful in marketing after graduation,” Tawara said.
After carrying out the practices a ComPac, Tabbal contacted Tawara and asked if there were marketing opportunities at Belt Collins Hawaii, where he served as director of marketing. Tawara hired Tabbal as a marketing intern, and after she graduated that same year, offered her a full-time position with the company as a marketing and information resources assistant.
When the company had to downsize due to the global recession of 2009, Tawara drew on her professional network and helped her land a position as a business development coordinator at Bowers + Kubota Consulting, where she would spend the next nine years of his career.
“It was an amazing opportunity for me to get to know Mark when I was an undergrad right before I graduated,” Tabbal said. “Making that connection helped me get to where I am today.”
Over the years, the couple stayed in touch and served together on the boards and committees of various professional organizations. After spending nearly a decade at Bowers + Kubota Consulting, Tabbal was looking for a change, and coincidentally, Tawara was looking to hire his first full-time employee at Manageability. LLCa marketing, management and technology consulting firm that he started in 2015. Tabbal joined Tawara in 2019 as Marketing/Administrative Manager and immediately became an invaluable and integral part of the business.
Fast forward to 2021 and Tawara (who also owns Bright Light Digital, a successful digital signage, audio visual and technology solutions company) decided they needed a co-owner for Manageability. He did not hesitate to ask Tabbal to fill those shoes and lead the company alongside him. Tabbal became principal and co-owner of Manageability LLCwhich makes it an entity with a small disadvantage, owned by women.
“I am so proud to see Tiffany’s growth as a student, employee and co-owner of the company,” said Tawara. “Our relationship is the epitome of what Business Night is all about: fostering relationships between students and local business professionals.”
For more stories, check out the Spring/Summer 2022 edition of Shidler Business magazine.
visit Uh news to see the 2022 return of Business Night in person.