Food & Beverage Team Leader, ibis London Shoreditch (United Kingdom)

Merhawit Tsegay

Merhawit Tsegay's story

I saw that I would be able to grow my career at Accor because I tried my hand in hospitality before. I had a part-time job alongside my studies. After I graduated, I interviewed at Accor and during the onboarding process they mentioned there was an opportunity to grow and that motivated me to learn everything I needed to know about my job.

I found that to be true – because I had the interest, the opportunity was there and that is how I started on my journey towards having a leadership role. My job as team leader is responsibility; it involves supporting my team in the food & beverage department, developing their skills, and establishing a relationship with guests from the moment they join us for their stay. Some of the responsibility includes training my colleagues whether new and existing and help them integrate into the hotel, managing stock orders for the bar; it is varied and that is what makes it exciting for me and part of the fun.

I enjoy getting through a busy shift like the breakfast buffet and at the bar, working hand in hand with my team. I like providing good service and making sure guests have an amazing experience. I love it when they feel they belong and that is because of the connection we make with them. Sometimes they ask for a recommendation for what they can do or see during the day, and at the end of the day, they come back and tell me about their experience.

My favourite thing is the flexibility of the scheduling, no two days are the same; I know there will be something new tomorrow, and that keeps me excited about going to work. I learn something each day – about myself and my personal growth, or my job – how to complete my tasks and upgrade my skills.

I have a lot of proud moments because every day there is a new challenge. But my proudest was when we were going through a transition at one point because our manager was leaving and we had a one-month gap until the new manager joined and that was when I got promoted to a team leader, working hand in hand with the kitchen supervisor. I stepped up to help our department to face those challenges as a team, running the daily operations with support from senior management.

Being a Heartist® is about providing an amazing experience so that our guests feel welcome, and that they belong. That is only possible when our team feels valued, when they feel free to be themselves, so that they are inspired and are working towards a common goal – providing a quality service guests can remember and recommend.

My advice to newcomers is, form connections and build strong relationships with your colleagues because you spend many hours with them. Have the right attitude to work and ask a lot of questions, so that you can learn your role, because you never know where it is going to take you.

  • Merhawit Tsegay
  • Food & Beverage Team Leader
  • ibis London Shoreditch (United Kingdom)

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