The People of IBB: Katharina Beyer

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This June, we are thrilled to feature Katharina Beyer, our talented and experienced Head of Operations at IBB Hotel Collection. With a distinguished career in hospitality and a fervent passion for sustainable tourism, Katharina brings a wealth of expertise and enthusiasm to her role.

Katharina’s journey in the hospitality industry began after she completed a rigorous three-year hotel management training program. This foundational experience set the stage for a remarkable career that saw her take on various operational roles in hotels across Brussels, Paris, and Heidelberg. Her experience spans a diverse range of establishments, from large hotels with extensive banqueting areas to five-star boutique hotels. Throughout her career, Katharina has worked in every department, transitioning seamlessly from operational roles to management positions.

In 2018, Katharina took a bold step by shifting her focus to managing a cycling tour operator in Myanmar and Thailand. Here, she managed a team of around 50 employees across five locations. This international experience broadened her perspective and honed her leadership skills. Returning to Europe in 2020, Katharina dedicated herself to various tourism projects with a strong emphasis on sustainable tourism development. Her most recent role before joining IBB Hotel Collection involved setting up a regional office for a hotel chain as a hospitality consultant. Along her journey, she earned certifications in strategic leadership and organizational change management, further enhancing her skill set.

Giving support and guidance to excel

Katharina joined IBB Hotel Collection about a year ago as Head of Operations, where she now manages hotels in Germany and Poland. Her role is pivotal, ensuring that hotel teams receive the support and guidance they need to excel. Katharina oversees revenue and cost control, people management, process implementation, and customer satisfaction. She works closely with hotel managers and the support team, fostering smooth collaboration. Additionally, she is instrumental in onboarding and supporting new hotel managers, identifying and aligning individual hotel needs with the company’s broader strategies.

One aspect Katharina particularly enjoys about working at IBB Hotel Collection is the close-knit relationship between the leadership team and the hotel teams. The leadership team at IBB Hotel Collection is highly approachable, fostering a culture without the typical hierarchical distance often found in larger hotel chains. Katharina also values the combination of remote and flexible work, which allows her to balance business needs with personal life while staying present at the properties and close to the operational teams.

At IBB Hotel Collection, living diversity and promoting equal opportunities are not just corporate buzzwords; they are actively practiced values. This commitment is evident in the significant number of women holding leadership positions within the company, a point of pride for Katharina and the entire team.

Employees at the heart of operations

One of the biggest challenges Katharina faces in her role is finding and retaining suitable employees. In the service industry, employees are the heart of operations, but changing expectations and qualifications, especially post-pandemic, have made recruitment and retention more challenging. To tackle this, Katharina focuses on attracting new talent and retaining current employees by giving them a voice, guiding their personal development, and ensuring they feel valued. Employees who see opportunities for growth and feel supported are the best ambassadors for attracting new colleagues. Additionally, Katharina emphasizes the importance of investing in the future generation by welcoming trainees, apprentices, and interns, showcasing the wonderful world of hospitality.

“The hospitality industry has undergone significant changes over the years, influenced by digitization and globalization. Customers now expect instant access to information throughout their journey with a hotel, while potential employees have easy access to information about professional opportunities even before an interview. Despite these technological advancements, the desire for genuine service interactions remains strong, a testament to the enduring human element in hospitality.”

Outside of her professional life, Katharina enjoys spending time outdoors, discovering and learning new things. She loves playing ultimate frisbee, learning to play the batucada, hiking, and biking. Balancing these active pursuits, she cherishes time spent with family and friends.

Katharina Beyer’s passion for hospitality, dedication to sustainable tourism, and commitment to her team make her an invaluable asset to IBB Hotel Collection. We are proud to feature her as part of our IBB family and look forward to her continued success in driving our operations forward.