1. Why were you attracted into the industry?
I was not initially. When I came to the UK, I was looking for a holiday job. Got a job as a breakfast waitress at The Cavendish. Working with people and for people became something I am really enjoying. Every day is different and you are almost always guaranteed that you will not have a dull day at work.
2. What was your first job in the industry?
It was a weekend job at a small club back home. I did two to three shifts a week, mostly over the weekend while still being in high school.
3. What educational qualifications do you have and/or training at work? How have these helped in your career?
I am currently studying Hospitality Management at Thames Valley University. I have received a lot of training directly at my work place. No matter if it was an internal training, such as induction, or external such as first aid, all of those brought benefits to my work. They help me to cope with every day incidents at work and they give me the confidence in myself.
4. Did you have a mentor who encouraged you during the early stages of your career?
If so, who and why were they inspirational?
I did not have a mentor. I very much enjoyed what I was doing so I motivated myself to take it further. I was always influenced by my superiors, who were supportive at all times.
5. What do you regard as being your biggest achievement to date?
I am very proud of my academic achievements. Getting an award for best academic achievement in 2007/2008 would be the thing I am mostly proud of. Especially as English is not my first language.
Similarly I an very proud that I have built my career up very quickly and became a Head of Department within 4 years in an industry that I had no experience in to start with at the age of 23.
6. What industry ambitions would you still like to achieve?
I do not set myself long term goals. I usually take it as it comes. Last thing I wanted to achieve was to be a Front Office Manager. Next thing? If I stay in the hotels it would definitely be a position within operations, probably Operations Manager.
I would also like to go into teaching once I get my Hospitality Management degree and bit more experience.
7. What gives you a buzz about your job?
The people. The ones I work with and the guests also. There are a lot of different people from all over the world which fascinates me.
But the main buzz is the fact that when I go to work I never know what to expect. Office job does not give me the same amount of satisfaction as working amongst people.
8. Why would you recommend the industry to potential recruits?
Because it’s fun, lively and interesting.
9. What are your top 3 tips to people entering the industry?
To be patient when starting as the training might take longer than expected.
To be a peoples person, as there are people around constantly.
To be flexible in regards to working hours and changes.
10. What are your main tasks in a typical day at work?
07:00 Handover from Night Manager - discuss any issues, follow ups and other information
07:00 Check the Morse Watchman report - download information and highlight issues with DFOH/FOHM
07:15 Count float ensuring money is correct - highlight any issues with DFOH/FOHM
07:30 Follow up with DM log, resolve any outstanding issues
07:15 Check e-mails & Opera Traces
07:45 Lobby Walk around - Check C&B signage, check internet terminals and newspapers are available
08:00 Print Departures list for Mini bar attendant
08:00 Check arrivals - highlight any missed requests with reception team
08:10 Ensure that VIP DM welcome alerts are set within Opera
08:12 Check for VIP's with bathrobes and place do not move on their rooms.
08:15 Walk around departments, checking for any issues, sickness etc.
08:30 Lobby Duty - see Lobby duty tasks
09:45 Prepare for the 10 o'clock morning meeting
10:00 Read out D.M's log and VIPs' at the meeting as well as H&S card for the day
10:15 Ensure that all toilets are checked for security and cleanliness - highlight issues in HOTSOS
11:00 Follow Up any outstanding Pay Master's in system
11:00 On Friday Fire bell test, place signage in Lobby & remind all FOH staff
11:30 Lobby Duty - see Lobby duty tasks
13:00 Check traces for VIP amenities & give to R/S - During week follow up with Switchboard
14:00 Start to prepare handover & 15min Training for the day
14:45 Count float and bank any money
15:00 Check the Correction and Rebate forms - highlight any abnormalies
15:10 Assist receptionists with banking and float checking
15:15 Handover with Late Duty Manager, Reception handover & 15 Daily training
15:20 Check the Reception morning Task sheet ensuring all tasks have been completed and signed.
15:30 Complete the D.M Logbook for your shift
14:30 Handover from early duty manager - discuss any issues, follow ups and other information
14:30 Count float ensuring money is correct - highlight any issues with DFOH/FOHM
14:30 Follow up with DM log, resolve any outstanding issues
14:30 Check e-mails & Opera Traces
14:30 Lobby Walk around - check internet terminals and newspapers are available
15:30 Check if C&B signage needs to be changed for evening events
15:35 Check any new on the day bookings for VIP or special requests
15:45 Ensure that all toilets are checked for security and cleanliness - highlight issues in HOTSOS
16:00 Lobby Duty (ensure breakfast letter is being given)
17:00 Start Dinner breaks
18:30 Lock offices on Mezzanine floor
20:30 Assign VIPs' for following days arrivals
20:45 Assign Zip & Link rooms for the next day - ensure traces are left for H/K team
20:45 Mini Bar late charges to be completed and sent out to guests
21:00 Ensure all outgoing bills have been franked and placed in the post box
21:00 Security walk round using Morse Watchman
22:15 Check the Correction and Rebate forms & counter sign
22:45 Complete the D.M Logbook for your shift
22:50 Handover to Night Manager - discuss any issues, follow ups and other information
22:50 Check the reception late Task sheet ensuring all tasks have been completed and signed.
Weekends During weekends remember to check reservations fax machine and e-mails