Quality employers support Passion4Hospitality 2018

untitledThe eighth edition of Passion4Hospitality, the Institute of Hospitality’s annual student and industry networking event, benefited from an extensive Careers Fair featuring nearly 40 companies looking for new talent.

Around 300 hospitality management students attended the all-day event which took place at Novotel London West on Monday (12 March). Students came from UK universities and colleges and from Stenden University in the Netherlands. They gained a wealth of advice on landing the right job during the interactive conference programme. They also had time to take full advantage of the excellent Careers Fair to make contact with the high-quality employers who are actively recruiting.


Represented at The Careers Fair were Royal Automobile Club, Victory Services Club, Shangri-La at the Shard, Georgian House, The Ritz, Dorchester Collection, Four Seasons Hotel London at Park Lane, Doyle Collection/The Bloomsbury, BaxterStorey, Evolve Hospitality, Novotel London West, Sarova Hotels, Foxhills, Gravetye Manor, Bespoke Hotels, Edition Hotels, Nadler Hotels, Hyatt, Waldorf Hilton, Iconic Luxury Hotels Group, The Savoy, Harbour Hotels Group, CH&Co, Splendid Hospitality, Exclusive Hotels and Venues, Catapult, Jurys Inn, Dorsett Hotels, Mandarin Oriental, Como Hotels and Resorts, SpaYse International, The Principal London, National Careers Service, Hospitality Assured, Dukes Collection, and Firmdale.

The HOTS Business Game runners-up from Stenden, Holland

Teams from six universities competed in the HOTS Business Game competition to run a virtual resort hotel. The winning team (above) was from Glion Institute of Higher Education, London. The runners-up came from Stenden University in the Netherlands. The University of Brighton came in third place. The competition was administered by Peter Russell MIH of the Russell Partnership.

Peter Ducker FIH, chief executive, Institute of Hospitality, introduced the event by telling students: “No one will ever care about your career as much as you do, so the sooner you start planning and setting yourself goals, the better.”

Get that job!

During a panel discussion, students were advised on how to stand out. Match the tone and message of your covering letter to the vacancy, said Shona Rye, director, Your Invisible Partner. Use social media as a research tool and go into the interview armed with information about the company, so that you are well-prepared when asked to contribute questions at the end of your interview, said Martin Smith, Collins King & Associates. Do not simply send in your CV and wait for a reply, said Neil Graham, managing director, SpaYse International. A follow-up phone call will help, and during the interview itself, recruiters are interested in personality.

Diversity dilemma

Asked whether she was in favour of quotas for female managers in hospitality, Debrah Dhugga FIH MI, managing director, Dukes Collection, replied: “I would never want to be given a job just because I was a woman.”

She added she would like to see more women at executive level: “A diverse board room generates a richness, a wider viewpoint in a world where women are increasingly a powerful force as consumers and business leaders.”

Diverse workplaces in general have advantages in terms of attaining customer loyalty, she said: “Value everyone in your organisation. Diversity refers to age, disability, religion, gender and more, and goes beyond just legal compliance. International work experience is of value and managers must be ready to harness the diversity of the workforce.”

Spotlight on the sectors

20180312_0528This panel discussion highlighted some of the lesser-known areas of employment in hospitality such as foodservice and private members clubs. Mark Field FIH, operations director, The Victory Services Club said that he found working in members clubs to be “a tremendous working environment where I can use my skills as a hotelier.” Jessica Berry, talent manager for The Doyle Collection, highlighted the similarities between her current role in human resources and her previous experience in event management. Delphine Delacroix AIH, MICE office manager at Novotel London West, added that working in events means that no two days are ever the same.

Adam Rowledge FIH, general manager, Georgian House, provided an extremely well-devised and useful A-Z of personal brand promotion. Using video well will give you a huge advantage on social media, he said, and concluded his presentation with a quote from Charles Buxton: “Experience shows that success is due less to ability than to zeal.”

Breaking the ice

Rory Kelly-Naughton, hotels business manager, Evolve, provided expert advice on networking. “Make contacts and then maintain them. I got my job with Evolve because I know the owner, even after six years. ”

Peter Ducker FIH concluded: “Passion4Hospitality is a highlight in our calendar and I always come away feeling inspired and energised. The speakers gave their time freely to help make today possible. My thanks to them; to all our sponsors; to the exhibitors at the Careers Fair; and also to Michael Sloan FIH and his team at the Novotel London West for their generosity as venue sponsors.”


The headline sponsor of Passion4Hospitality 2018 was Planday. The other sponsors were arena4finance, aslotel, the Council for Hospitality Management Education (CHME), Critiquie, Fresh Montgomery, Glion, HOTS, Novotel, Savoy Educational Trust, Stenden, SpaYse International.



Bright future for hospitality management graduates, says Institute of Hospitality Student Learning & Development Forum 2017

Eleni Michael AIH and Dana Kanibolotska AIH told the Forum how the Institute had helped their management careers get off to a flying start.

Hospitality management students from across the UK attending the Institute of Hospitality’s 12th Student Learning & Development Forum gained vital insights into the exciting career paths ahead of them. The Forum included a special focus on the importance of diversity in the workplace.

The fully-booked event (15 November) was entitled “The Future is Now.” In his introduction, London Branch chair Paul Evans FIH said: “The future belongs to millennials and generation z. At the Institute of Hospitality London Branch, 40% of our organising committee is under 30 and a similar percentage are female. The hospitality industry is booming. In London, there are 8,000 new bedrooms opening this year, plus 3,500 in the rest of the UK. This growth presents an amazing opportunity to forge a great career. Our industry needs accountants, chefs, digital marketing experts, lawyers, revenue managers and HR managers.”

Next on stage,  two recent graduates described how involvement with the Institute of Hospitality had assisted them in making the right career choices. Eleni Michael AIH was invited to join the Institute’s London Branch Organising Committee when she attended last year’s L&D Forum. She went on to help Michael Voigt FIH MI organise the Institute’s Careers Fair in May 2017.  She was also inspired by the ethos and style of Firmdale Hotels while attending last year’s Forum which took place at the group’s Ham Yard Hotel in Soho. A recent graduate from the University of Surrey, she is now at the start of a two-year management trainee programme with Firmdale Hotels based at its Charlotte Street property.

Dana Kanibolotska AIH is another London Branch committee member and a recent graduate from Oxford Brookes University. She said: “The Institute of Hospitality networking and learning events that I attended as a student had a great impact on my personal and professional development, and allowed me to progress in my career at such an early stage.”

Following work placements at The Savoy and the Mandarin Oriental in London and an exchange at the Burgundy Business School in France to improve her accounting and business knowledge, Kanibolotska is currently head receptionist at the Old Bank Hotel, a 42-bedroom boutique property in Oxford.

Nearly 250 students attended the Forum from  the Edge Hotel School, Oxford BrookesUniversity, Glion Institute of Higher Education, University of West London, Westminster Kingsway College, Bournemouth University, Coventry University, Anglia Ruskin University, Norwich City College and University of Sunderland.

24607106248_e18cae3dcf_oThe inspirational speakers and panelists were:
Alistair Storey OBE FIH, president of the Institute of Hospitality and chairman and chief executive of WSH;
Michael Voigt FIH MI, general manager, L’Oscar London;
Tony Fleming, executive chef L’Oscar London;
Sean Wheeler, Group HR, Principal Hotels;
Rafael Bejerano FIH MI, director AB Hotels;
Giovanni Valentini, head of operations of hotel services for the TLC Group;
Josh Light, HR director, The Curtain Hotel, London;
Jessica Berry, talent manager, The Doyle Collection;
Josh Craddock, sales & marketing director, The Doyle Collection;
Serena von der Heyde, owner, The Georgian House Hotel;
Gregory Hall MIH, committee member Institute of Hospitality London Branch and operations manager, Elior UK;
Mary-Jane Flanagan, founder of MJ Inspire
PJ Kenny, general manager, The Hoxton, London;
Jula Fowler, human resources manager, L’Oscar London;
Antony Woodcok, managing director, Gig;
Robert Nadler, founder of Nadler Hotels.

The Institute of Hospitality London Branch Student Learning & Development Forum 2017 was generously sponsored by the venue, the Bloomsbury Hotel, part of the Doyle Collection; Preferred Hotels & Resorts; Gig; Graphico Printing and NS International.


Institute of Hospitality London Careers Fair matches New Talent with Top Employers

Organisers Eleni Michael and Michael Voigt with Daniele Quattromini (centre) get in the frame courtesy of Firmdale Hotels
Organisers Eleni Michael and Michael Voigt with Daniele Quattromini of Cliveden (centre) at the London Careers Fair. Photo opp courtesy of Firmdale Hotels!

Over 250 job-seeking students and hospitality professionals made direct contact with more than 30 top-quality employers at the Institute of Hospitality London Careers Fair last week (Friday 19 May).

With student members at 34 UK colleges and universities, including Glion, University of Surrey, Westminster Kingsway College and University of Brighton, the Institute of Hospitality facilitated the match-making.

Mariya Kovacheva AIH, who graduates from the Edge Hotel School this year, said: “People from HR wanted to interact with us, see what attracted us to hospitality and ask about our future goals. They are going to offer us positions. It was very good and very useful.”

Paul McDonald, human resources business partner at Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts, said: “What an uplifting day meeting new and exciting talent through the Institute of Hospitality. Thank you to all of those new connections whom expressed an interest in Shangri-La Hotel, At the Shard.”

Graham Copeland FIH MI, group hotel director at the Zetter Group, said: “I am delighted that we could showcase The Zetter Group’s amazing career opportunities to the talented students of the universities, colleges and hotel schools attending the Institute of Hospitality Careers Fair.”

Joanne Meredith, head of human resources at The Ritz London, said: “We have met many great students today.”

The event was organised by Michael Voigt FIH, general manager of L’Oscar and Institute of Hospitality London Branch education officer. Ben Singer FIH, chair for the London Branch, Paul Evans FIH deputy dean of BPP University and student member Eleni Michael from the University of Surrey worked closely with Michael to put the event on.

Those in attendance heard expert careers advice from guest speakers Robert Nadler of Nadler Hotels, Michael Gray FIH MI, former GM of the Hyatt Regency, Jurgen Ammerstofer from The Edition London and Rak Kalidas of Levy Restaurants.

The event took place at the Institute of Directors on Pall Mall. Lunch and refreshments were generously sponsored by BaxterStorey. Planday, a provider of employee scheduling software, also sponsored the event.