1. Tell us about your educational background and your work experience to date.
I have worked in the industry from the age of 15, as a part-time waitress – I have been part of the industry now for 46 years and counting. I have worked at hotel, regional, divisional and international level in major international brands. I truly value this background which gives me a perspective, not only at various levels, but also across different cultures. I have also gained a good understanding of the importance of valuing diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
2. Why are you so passionate about the hotel and hospitality industry?
I don’t think anyone can really say why. I think any true Hospitality Professional will tell you it gets into your blood and you either have it or you don’t. It’s long hours and hard work; so you’d better love it! I am very passionate about the people – nurturing a team of engaged employees who feel valued and in turn will pass on that feeling to their guests.
3. Mention five words to describe yourself and your work ethic.
Transparent, Committed, Authentic, Approachable, Hands on.
4. Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
Having the available time to enjoy the industry I have worked in for so many years but still contributing in some way.
5. Tell us one of the most rewarding experiences in your profession to date.
Seeing people who have both worked for me and with me move very successfully into senior leadership positions across the world both at hotel and senior leadership levels.
6. What growth do you anticipate for the hotel and hospitality industry in the next 20 years?
Today’s trends show that guests’ expectations are more selective based on quality and personalisation. They will spend a little more as long as they feel value for money. Once countries like China and Japan start to travel again like the US, demand will be even stronger. In the short-term the roller-coaster ride may continue, but in the long-term I believe our industry will continue to grow in different ways. This means our HR practices will need to change due to the impact COVID-19 had and we will need to ensure Employee Engagement is higher on our agendas.