Lusica Stefan's story
I started with Accor 16 years ago and with support and trust the company gave me many opportunities to grow, they had confidence in me. It was my first job, I had no experience and they taught me how to look after clients, to speak with them. They also taught me to speak English and to manage basic communication in French, I learnt the menu in French as well because we are a French company.
That was very good for me – if a big challenge – because when I started, most guests were French. I still use the language because when I recognise the accent, I speak to customers in French – they are always surprised and delighted!
To be a Heartist® is to do your job with your heart and with passion; with these two ingredients you can be a great Heartist. Every day I give my heart to our clients and I think they are happy with the service I give and with my approach. It is more than just giving people their plates and saying ‘enjoy’, it is your energy, your attitude and your positivity.
There is one girl on my team who is 20 and who started last year. She reminds me of me 16 years ago and she is my baby! I have invested all my energy and passion so that she does so much more than just give clients their food. She is progressing every day and she is blooming like a flower; I am so proud of her, as is the whole management team. She is curious and wants to learn and I am teaching her elements of management, she is like my assistant.
My proudest moment is when I walk around the restaurant, it is mine because 14 years ago I was the only person from the hotel whom management asked to open the important new restaurant, the rest of the team was from outside. It is a steakhouse and was just the second one in Bucharest at the time. I was surprised to be asked to run it.
If you are new in the sector and want to know more about hospitality, it is fascinating and you can achieve great things. It is about more than your career, you can grow as a person every day. For me hospitality is a university – you improve, you learn, and I know how to generate trust and how to speak with clients of different cultures. It is a broad education; you develop your social and professional skills.
- Lusica Stefan
- Restaurant Manager Barbizon Steak House
- Pullman Bucharest World Trade Centre (Romania)