Meet the Manager

Blake Segal, who took over as Harrah’s general manager at the beginning of August, is the former GM of the Cromwell, Las Vegas, and he has been with Caesar’s Entertainment for 15 years.
Segal grew up in a small town in western Pennsylvania, and from there went to Tulane University in New Orleans, graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in management with a concentration in finance. He broke into the casino industry with Caesars in New Orleans, starting in analytics and finance. He transitioned to the role of vice president of operations, later transferring to Las Vegas.
“I always wanted to work in business,” Segal said. “I thought it would be great to own my own business, however as I went through school I realized it would be best to learn from a major corporation how to go about business, because there is a lot to it.”
The corporation he joined, Caesars, proved to be a rewarding experience.
“The great thing about the gaming industry is it’s very tangible,” Segal said. “In the hospitality industry you see the output and people’s reaction to it.”
He is currently the only GM of a Caesars property who also has corporate duties. He has had a lead role in several architecture initiatives and oversees the company’s air charter program.
“We fly 120,000 plus passengers a year across our network and Harrah’s Laughlin is a huge recipient of that,” he said.
Segal explained that the Laughlin and Vegas markets are similar, being vacation destinations, but Laughlin is more about “providing a good value to the customer.”
He is happy with his position at Harrah’s Laughlin, because of his team and the environment.
“The Harrah’s Laughlin team is an amazing group,” Segal said. “Our team members are engaged and always wanting to provide our guests with a great experience. And Laughlin is so great because it’s laid back, it’s fun and you can just be yourself.”
He keeps operations running smoothly by identifying and breaking down barriers that inhibit his team from producing top-quality service and by stepping in with support when needed.
“More than anything it’s important to provide your team with the necessary support but also allow them the freedom to operate their business,” Segal said. “Many of them have been brought up in the industry and have tremendous backgrounds. They are very intelligent and they genuinely want to do what’s best for the business.
“And the second part of that is to set a broad strategy and expectations, and work together as a group to accomplish it.”
Segal said they regularly take employee opinion surveys to learn what is working and what’s not, and help gather solutions to make the best possible team experience.
His goal is to expand upon the successes the property has had and continue to develop the amenities Harrah’s provides guests.
“This property has set itself apart,” Segal said. “But we are still thinking about what else is out there for us to provide — products, amenities and services to our guests. It’s just trying to figure out what makes a compelling stay and how to differentiate ourselves in the market.”
Segal plans to continue seeking out prominent entertainment to bring to Laughlin. Now that the Rio Vista Outdoor Amphitheater has been expanded, Harrah’s can accommodate the numbers a big group brings in, such as Rascal Flatts, who played earlier this month.
As a side project, Segal is on the board of directors for Opportunity Village, a nonprofit organization in Vegas providing services for adults with intellectual disabilities.
His volunteer work and business success landed him a spot on Vegas Inc’s annual “40 Under 40” list this year. The award honors influential people in the community under the age of 40 who are helping improve Southern Nevada.
The list includes attorneys, marketing directors, executive chefs, scientists, a police lieutenant and many more who are making a difference through community service and the “entrepreneurial spirit.”