Ever considered a career in hospitality, or are you just simply curious about what goes on behind the scenes at Inn at Laurel Point? We managed to get a Guest Services Manager, First Cook and Second Cook from Pastry to stand still long enough to find out what a day in their shoes (steel toed or stiletto) is like.
A Career as a Guest Services Manager
Heather began at the Inn in 2008 as a Front Desk Agent before working her way up to Guest Services Manager, her current position. This progression has helped her develop a more rounded perspective of what goes on at the Inn, and understand the ins and outs of daily operations. On a day-to-day basis, Heather finds herself doing any number of tasks, including briefing the team on guests who will be arriving, finding solutions to special requests, arranging site visits, setting up sales goals, and assisting the bell and front desk team as needed.
Heather admits that this can be both great and challenging at the same time, as no day is ever the same. Recently there was a guest who checked in and after seeing the hotel, decided that she wanted to get married – right there, right then. Heather readjusted her plans for the day, and helped this guest to get a marriage license, buy a wedding dress, and within a few hours, made a wedding happen.
When asked about what advice she would give to someone wanting to be a Guest Services Manager, Heather said that one of the most important things to understand is that nothing is outside of the job description. “I have literally done everything,” she says. “Be flexible, and on your toes.” With such a wide role, Heather advises that you don’t need to be a specialist, but you do need to understand what is going on around the Hotel, from sales contracts, to events and conferences, to what is on AURA’s menu.
Heather describes the work environment at the Inn as “super supportive, filled with friendly and fantastic co-workers who care about one another”. Regardless of how challenging a day may be, they are still able to share a laugh.
A Career as a First Cook
Jeremy, First Cook, has also been with Inn at Laurel Point for eight years. He cooks for meetings, weddings and evening events, and helps out the AURA team when he can. Daily duties outside of food preparation include anything from putting away orders, to repairing appliances, to helping the banquet staff. It is busy and fast-paced, although the team in the kitchen manages to keep things lighthearted and still have some fun.
When asked what he enjoys most about his job, Jeremy said he loves how different daily tasks can be; in one day he can go from cooking breakfast for a banquet for 50 people, to helping finish plates in AURA for a table of 4. For someone who wants to be a cook, Jeremy’s advice is to be prepared for hard work, and to be able to find satisfaction in what you create instead of waiting for someone else to tell you how great a job you did. He also jokingly warns to never put down your tongs.
A memorable moment for Jeremy occurred when he first started with Inn at Laurel Point, back when there was only one main fridge. It broke down just days before Thanksgiving, and all of the prepared food was destroyed overnight. The kitchen staff had to re-prep everything and arrange for a refrigerated truck to be used as their main fridge while theirs was being repaired.
A Career in Pastry
Riley, worked her way up to Second Cook (Pastry) after starting out at the Assistant Pastry Cook. Riley reiterates that every day is different at Inn at Laurel Point; some of the daily tasks Riley handles (outside of preparing pastries & desserts) include checking over orders and equipment in the kitchen, preparing banquet platters, and helping prepare orders for AURA restaurant.
Riley says that what she enjoys most about working at the Inn is the ability to work with high quality ingredients, and getting to work with other people who are passionate about what they do. To anyone who wants to work in pastry, Riley’s advice is to be open to learning, as techniques and trends are always evolving. “If someone shows you a new technique be open to it, because they have probably been doing it longer and probably do it better,” Riley says.
As evidenced by the feedback from Heather, Jeremy & Riley, flexibility is the name of the game for Inn at Laurel Point employees. Working at a hotel provides the opportunity for continuous learning and advancement for employees who are hard-working, but can still go with the flow. If you are interested in joining the Inn at Laurel Point team check out our careers page.