My real story: Carina L

Age: 24

Education: Bachelor of Economics

Current position: Guest Services Team Leader, The Grace Hotel Sydney

Number of years at the hotel? 2 years

What does my role entail? I assist and monitor the front desk duties of departure and arrivals and ensure each shift runs smoothly by assisting the manager on duty.

How I got my start in the hotel industry: I enjoyed working at my previous retail job because of all the interaction with customers. Hotels can provide the same experience as well as offer great career opportunities.

Why do you like working in Hotels? I enjoy the interactions with guests from different countries and diverse cultures and assisting guests with all their needs. Hotels also offer opportunity to develop your career.

What surprised you about working in hotels? Guests are incredibly generous in expressing their appreciation and acknowledgement of our customer services.

What my career has looked like to date: I began my career as a part-time cashier at a supermarket, before moving into a sales assistant role at an optometrist and then moved to a wholesale furniture company as a purchasing officer while I completed my bachelor degree. I applied to be a Guest Service Agent after finishing university and progressed to Team Leader.

During your time at this Hotel, what has been your proudest moment? Being new to this industry, I was very proud to receive Employee of the Year in 2016.

What has been your greatest professional achievement to date? My greatest professional achievement to date was my promotion to Guest Services Team Leader within one year of starting at The Grace Hotel.

Where do you wish to go from here? I wish to become a Front Office Manager.

What challenges do you face in this role? Accurate decision-making on the spot is one of the greatest challenges in this role. It is also important to communicate with the right attitude and deliver correct and detailed information.

What message do you have to tell others about working in the accommodation industry? This is a fun, unique, challenging industry that can offer a lot of experiences.

What advice would you give to people considering a career in Hotels? Be passionate about what you do, as there are many different situations you have to face each day.  Keep smiling, it’s important in the hotel industry

Have you met anyone famous during your career in Hotels? Yes. I have met Mr Bill Shorten (Federal Opposition Leader), it was a pleasure to meet him and check Mr Shorten into the hotel.

Can you bust any Hotel career myths? Many people might think a hotel career is an easy job and simply involves checking guests in and out of the hotel. This is not accurate; it’s a challenging job, especially when dealing with guests from different countries and all the behind-the-scenes operations, that outsiders do not see, that are required to operate a hotel.

What training have you received from your employer as part of your professional development? We undertake Opera System training and emergency training every year. I have also received training in purchasing and HR.

What skills have you learnt on the job? Interpersonal communication skills, in particular in relation to international guests.

What are your working hours like? I work various shifts in rotation.

What’s the pay like? Good pay.