Anna Gonerska's Story
I enjoy living in Scotland, because it is quite easy to study and save some money at the same time. In Poland usually students need to focus either on working and saving, or studying. Scotland is also great, offering free education and free prescribed medications, unlike England. The only problem for me, living in Scotland is the weather!
I left Accor in 2020 when I was made redundant because of Covid-19. I In the meantime, I worked in a shop but I didn’t enjoy it because the management didn’t look after staff; it was not how they treated people in Accor. Then I worked at a local fast food restaurant and leadership didn’t listen to people’s ideas for changing or improving things; at Accor, people definitely listen to employees’ opinions.
I came back in June last year. I would like to explore reception work more because I like to have things organised and I can deal with customers and make their experience better. For example, when I can see that someone has had a bad day, during check-in I can improve their day by making them smile. I can also prepare something for them if they have a birthday and make their day special.
We get positive feedback from customers, especially when they are checking out. It feels like that all the time; people bring us chocolates, cards or paintings they have done. We encourage people to comment and when guests mention team members, we highlight the best ones on the wall of fame opposite the reception desk.
At the moment, the most realistic role for me would be supervisor, I’d like that, but we have a small team and don’t really need supervisors, so in my hotel, the next role I could have would be assistant general manager. I am going to study now, so I won’t be able to work full time but Accor would give me the opportunity if I were going to be here full time. Meanwhile, I am training people.
I’m studying nursing this year, that’s where I want to go, and that’s why it’s nice to be in hospitality and have everyday contact with clients, so that I can get used to dealing with complaints and other issues; it’s good to get experience of all that. I want to do mental health nursing as well.
To someone who is newly in the sector, give 100% and try to learn as much as you can. Be part of the team but do not let people walk over you; when you are good, sometimes people might try to exploit that. And regarding customers, don’t pay too much attention to people who are not very nice to you because they have had a bad day – it’s not about you.
And to someone who is looking for work, it’s easy in hospitality because the rota can be flexible, you can work mornings, evenings, not Monday to Friday, 9 to 5; if you just want to work at weekends or night shifts, you can do that, it can be adapted to you and your needs. And you can work in hospitality without experience because you can gain it working there; I’m already working in three areas of the hotel…
- Anna Gonerska
- Multi-Task Team Member
- ibis Aberdeen Centre – Quayside (UK)