AMA Houston is proud to celebrate diversity in thought, leadership, and contribution throughout the year. This May, we are honored to highlight a professional that is a member of the Asian American & Pacific Islander (AAPI) community that we know and admire as we celebrate AAPI History Month.
Hami Vo Arrington is a founder at One Foot Over, a B2B strategy and marketing agency that works alongside CMOs and marketing executives to create strategies that bring results and solutions to their marketing problems.
Hami holds a BA in Public Relations and Marketing and an MBA in Marketing from Georgia State University. She is the 2021-2022 president of the American Marketing Association Houston Chapter, past president of the Women’s Masters Network, Leadership Houston Class XXXVII alumna, and Junior Achievement of Southeast Texas board member. Hami was also chosen to be an Ambassador for the Cohort 26 Alumni from the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program.
She believes in empowering women in all aspects of life. That includes lifting up their beliefs and providing full support in their endeavors. Along with her organizational involvement, Hami’s passion has driven her to speak at many events including Alert Logic Women’s Group, Gulf Coast Young Women’s Leadership Symposium, Dress for Success Houston, Rice University Jones Graduate School Women in Leadership Conference, TaxAct Tour, Association for Corporate Growth (ACG), and Governor’s Small Business Forum for Women – Gulf Coast.
Tell us a little bit about you! What work do you do, and where do you work?
Until July 2022, I’m serving as president of AMA Houston. It’s been a rigorous year, like it has been for everyone, but I get to work with a group of the best marketers in Houston. It’s been an honor!
When I’m not running AMA Houston, I run One Foot Over, a B2B strategy and marketing agency. We work alongside CMOs and marketing executives to create strategies that bring results and solutions to their marketing problems.
What is the most fulfilling part of your work? -or- What do you enjoy most about the work that you do?
At my core, I am a problem solver and view all problems as jigsaw puzzles. For me, it’s fun to hear a problem, dig in, and explore ways to find a sound solution. I’m seeking to know what makes the business–the people, the passions, their customers–so well that I become a part of their team.
I love seeing the results of that work–almost like putting that last piece of a puzzle in place.
Has there been a significant experience you have had that has impacted your journey to this point?
There are two:
First, I’m a first generation Vietnamese-American, and my family came to the US from Vietnam after the war. When I came along, we still weren’t settled yet, so I moved a lot—I went to six different elementary schools! I look back now and can see the things those experiences taught me: adaptability in fluid situations, the ability to make new friends, and low resistance to change.
Second, it all comes back to AMA. I used to think work life was separate from personal life. When I joined AMA Houston, I worked with Summer Austin and Stephen May on the Crystal Awards. It was during that process of working together, becoming friends that I came to realize that work life is much more fun when you’re working with friends!
Summer is no longer with us, and I miss her dearly. However, her legacy lives on–Stephen and I started One Foot Over together!
As a woman in the marketing industry, what is the most important message that you would choose to share with your industry at large?
Absolutely, and this goes out to every professional out there: Lift others up. Help someone if they need it, be kind even when it’s hard, recognize someone when they go above and beyond, and take every opportunity to help when you can. When you go through your professional life with that attitude, you will always win.
Who/what motivates and inspires you?
“You’re the average of the five people spend the most time with,” is a quote attributed most often to motivational speaker Jim Rohn. I have found this to be especially true in my life. My friends, colleagues, and clients inspire and push me to become better every day.