The IBB Hotel and Cugó Gran Collection celebrated International Youth Day, commemorated every year on the 12th of August by showcasing some of the youngest employees and celebrating their achievements.
We have interviewed three of our youngest employees who shared their experiences and insights on the hospitality industry.
Marc Perez, Assistant to the Director IBB & Cugó Gran Collection spoke about innovation in the industry and how he would like to see the industry develop in the future.
Explaining how he loves his role as Assistant to the Director, as he can suggest improvements for the implementation of a unified procedure and is able to expand and consolidate processes, he highlights the fact that companies should take into consideration the fact that young people can bring innovative ideas in such a changing and evolving environment.
Younger people usually bring a new vision to the sector and as they have no experience, therefore, their priorities should be analyzed and their welfare should be looked after, demonstrating the company’s commitment to the employee and the environment – the most important thing is that they feel happy and recognized.
Marc believes that youths can be offered incentives to develop their work with a positive attitude and be provided with support training programs. He thinks that it is appropriate to develop a work strategy according to their activity – including the combination of office and remote work.
Pravin Suthinroek, Hotel Director at IBB Hotel Altmühltal-Eichstätt also spoke about the much-needed support that youths need in the hospitality industry.
We have many youths working at the hotel; most of our front desk employees are under 30, and we need to talk to them, support them in whatever they require.
Pravin also mentioned the vast opportunities provided to youths in the hospitality industry. He explained that the industry is trendy and people can work across the world and achieve the experience needed through different cultures and opportunities.
Pravin, in fact, started off as a Revenue Coordinator with the company in 2018, and moved on to become Hotel Director at our hotel in Eichstätt in 2023. He saw himself climbing up the career ladder in a matter of years and has never looked back since.
Asked about the best aspect of his role, he said that he loves being part of such a dynamic team and is really proud to represent the IBB Hotel Collection brand. “As a role model, I want to give my opinion and knowledge to the whole team and provide much-needed support when needed.”
Having worked in different roles in the company, he is the perfect hands-on manager and is always ready to optimize the process.
Michael Zgola, Front Office Manager at IBB Hotel Berlin Airport spoke about the ability for companies to obtain new talent by updating employment terms, offering bonuses and revamping the entire incentive system.
“Working in the hotel industry is not for everyone and with the industry struggling since the pandemic and a great shortage of skilled staff, it is time for companies to change their focus and set it on new and existing employees. New employees should be able to have a detailed career path, which is enforced, and they need to know that the company wants them to develop and grow.”
He also touched on training provided to youths and said that external training opportunities would be another aspect that can strongly strengthen both the employee and the company’s position.
Michael explained his role as an exciting one – “the position is never boring; every day brings you numerous new cases which you have never dealt with before.” He explained how the variety of the job and the need to “go out of the box” is a great challenge and he really loves that the front desk is the first impression a guest gets of the hotel and the company.
We are responsible for the positioning of the hotel and the company, and I simply love that.
He also mentioned how as a manager he loves to lead employees, learn from them, help them in whatever way they need and motivate them. He also loves to see his team flourish and grow. Having only recently started this new role, he remarked how he is continuing to learn about the role each and every day.
Speaking about barriers in the industry, Marc highlighted a demanding job with irregular working hours, affecting work-life balance and the lack of recognition. Pravin also mentioned the flexibility of the job and the working hours. He said that the job will actually become a part of your lifestyle, but that it is not for everyone. Michael also mentioned that big players in the industry treat their employees as a labour force and mentioned how every worker is important. “We are the ones who are face to face with guests – we are the image of the company.”
Pravin also spoke about the future of the hospitality industry. He mentioned flexibility once again and said that employees should have the same priority as the guest. The challenge of finding employees is always at the top of the agenda, and even though he said that the hospitality industry is one of the best and most beautiful in the world, there are other better paid industries which people aspire to. Therefore, for Pravin, it’s of utmost importance for employees to be happy and supported each step of the way to be able to give the experience that guests are after.
Speaking about the future of the hospitality industry, Marc envisioned new trends that hoteliers would need to adapt in order to satisfy the new tastes and preferences of guests. He also mentioned sustainability as a key aspect – with a specific mention of integrated ecological practices.
Michael mentioned the importance of directing efforts toward employees. He said that companies should appreciate the talent pool and give more opportunities for growth.
What are the best aspects about working at IBB & Cugó Gran Collection?
Marc highlighted several aspects about working with the company, including the possibility for professional growth and development, financial stability, having a job that he finds interesting and creative, as well as the feeling of recognition.
On the other hand, Pravin spoke about communication and the way of transition – which in his words is quite short. He mentioned the fact that it is always easy to give feedback to superiors and to develop personally. “I never thought that in 5 years I would be a Director of a hotel – and now I am, and couldn’t be happier.”
The opportunity for career development is what Michael described as the best aspect of working in the company. He remembered his time as a waiter in Poland five years back. He mentioned how he then progressed to become Restaurant Supervisor at IBB Hotel Altmühltal-Eichstätt and then in Berlin as Front Office Manager.
Mentioning how the company is a family business and how everyone knows each other but also an international hotel chain, he said that he loves the friendliness offered by it. “It does not matter which level you are at, everyone is treated the same way and management is always ready to help in every single way.”
Where would you see yourself in 5 years?
Marc hopes that in 5 years he will have improved his knowledge and have broader experience of the sector.
“I hope to continue working here and to reach positions of greater responsibility. I will be able to contribute my skills and knowledge in order to help boost and improve the company.”
Pravin was quite humble with his answer and said that he would never know, as life can change so fast. He said that he always tries to do his best, each and every day and takes every opportunity to grow further.
Michael is certain that he will continue to grow with the IBB and Cugó Gran Collection and commented about the challenges that he might face and how he would tackle them straight on.
About International Youth Day
International Youth Day brings youth issues to the attention of the international community and celebrates the potential of youth as partners in today’s global society.
The idea for International Youth Day was proposed in 1991 by the young people who were gathered in Vienna, Austria, for the first session of the World Youth Forum of the United Nations System. The Forum recommended that an International Youth Day be declared, especially for fund-raising and promotional purposes, to support the United Nations Youth Fund in partnership with youth organizations.
In 1998, a resolution proclaiming 12 August as International Youth Day was adopted by the first session of the World Conference of Ministers Responsible for Youth.