Jeanette started her journey in life at the Teaching Hotel, travelled and worked around the world and now, due to Covid-19, happily returns to the Teaching Hotel. In a few blogs she will share her journey from hospitality talent to a professional, from Maastricht to the rest of the world and back to Maastricht.
As part of the Hotel Management School Maastricht, I 9 years ago completed my management internship as Banqueting Sales intern at Teaching Hotel Chateau Bethlehem. Having only experience in F&B and Front Office, Banqueting Sales was a new challenge. This internship was a great opportunity for me to gain experience in the ‘back office’ part of the hotel. Not only was I able to learn all the ins and outs about reservations for hotel and banqueting, but it also provided me a good platform to develop myself.
In February 2012, I graduated from the Hotel Management School Maastricht and I was awarded the Badge of Merit for my contribution in promoting the Teaching Hotel. After my graduation I was ready to take on the world. But what to do next?
I decided to sell everything I owned and take my backpack off to India. After nearly 12 months of backpacking I was slowly running out of money. I flew to Sydney, Australia, to look for a job. It didn't take long before I had a job in a small boutique hotel in Potts Point as Receptionist. As this was my first overseas work experience, I was anxious whether or not I would be able to communicate in English professionally, as English was definitely not one of my strong points. I suppose those communication lessons and English courses at HMSM were useful after all.
After a year in Australia, I was back on the road, with my backpack to Indonesia. I travelled to Sulawesi Tengah to do scuba-diving on a small remote island, that can only be reached by a 12 hour ferry ride. It has no phone reception, TV or internet, Heaven on Earth! I loved the island and decided to stay a bit longer and do my Dive Master Course. With high-season approaching, the resort I was staying at, needed a staff member to run the resort. Well, with a BBA from the HMSM in my pocket, this sounded perfect for me. This was a great experience, but after 8 months on a remote island, I decided that I needed to head back to civilization. I packed my bags again and headed to New Zealand.
Five days after my arrival in New Zealand and a 10 minute phone interview, I found my next challenge. A week later I would start as a Receptionist in a well-known 5 star hotel in Wellington. Over the next 5 years I was promoted to Assistant-Front Office Manager, Reception Manager and eventually Front Office Manager. In school I used to be this shy little girl, who would not be noticed when I would walk into my boss’s office. I could still remember Mrs Barbou telling me that I would have to be more confident and stronger, otherwise my future boss would walk all over. With those years of travelling the world and growing professionally, I am definitely not that same girl anymore as who stood there 8 years ago in Mrs Barbou’s office during my internship at the Teaching Hotel.
"Als groente en fruit hun smaak terugkrijgen, gaan we er ook meer van eten. Smaak verdient meer serieuze aandacht."
In a few blogs she will share her journey from hospitality talent to a professional from Maastricht to the rest of world.