Q&A with Rising Star selectee, Paula Black
Mercure Edinburgh City - Princes Street Hotel's General Assistant, Paula Black, speaks about being selected as a Jupiter Rising Star and how it will help her career in hospitality.
How long have you worked at Mercure Edinburgh City - Princes Street Hotel and can you tell us about your career history to date?
I have worked here for 6 and a half years now. I began as a Food & Beverage Attendant whilst studying music at college. Once I finished my degree a Restaurant Supervisor position became available so I jumped at the position and was successful. After a busy year in the position an opportunity became available in the front office. Eager to push myself I went for the position and within 6 months was promoted to Reception Supervisor. The General Assistant position was a new role within the hotel and my manager asked me if I would be interested in the position. I took her up on the offer and here I am now.
Can you describe a typical day for us?
Working in a hotel there is no such thing as a typical day as you never know what is going to happen and that’s what I love about it. However, every day I come in and prepare my fire team, check all departments are fully staffed then it’s on to replying to guest feedback, helping other departments and doing staff inductions/training.
What motivated you to apply for the Rising Star development programme?
Having been in this position for a year and a half now I felt it was time for a challenge. I wanted to learn a bit more about the finer details of the business e.g. revenue and forecasting as well as seeing how other hotels operate and see if there are any ideas I can bring back.
Can you tell us what’s involved in the Rising Star programme and the plans for the year ahead?
I am really excited for this year; there are lots of training courses in sales and HR as well as two placements in other hotels. Who knows what else it will bring!
So where do you see yourself in 3 years?
In three years I would like to be in an Operations Manager position preparing myself to be General Manager.
If you could offer any advice to anyone thinking of a career in hospitality, what would it be?
Any opportunities that come your way make sure you grasp them. Don’t let anything pass you by.