Art of Leadership at Lausanne Hotel School
Emma Stewart, Rooms Division Training Manager, Gleneagles Hotel
Having grown up in Australia, I moved to Scotland when I was nineteen to pursue a broader understanding of the hospitality industry both professionally and through travel, experiencing as much as I could in Britain and Europe.
I started in a small country house hotel, where I learnt an invaluable foundation of knowledge working in Guest Services, Housekeeping and Food & Beverage, progressing to Assistant Hotel Manager. This gave me exposure to all the triumphs and challenges that happen in our industry, and I now have an authentic sense of empathy for all departments.
More recently, my journey has brought me to The Gleneagles Hotel which is by far the biggest establishment I have ever worked in. I can honestly say that I have found my home at Gleneagles and that they have truly developed me as an individual and allowed me to pursue the aspects of the industry I am passionate about. I started in Guest Services, then became Front of House Coordinator, then was promoted into a position created for my personal skill set, Rooms Division Training Manager. Over the years, through excellent mentoring, I have become passionate about supporting and encouraging individuals and teams to love what they do, and actively creating an environment that they love coming to each and every day. I feel incredibly fortunate to have found Gleneagles who allow me to make this passion a reality resulting in an enormous sense of personal satisfaction. This year, I am celebrating my tenth year in Scotland. In the last decade, I have grown up, become a citizen, got married and now own a home in this beautiful country that I love.
However, the girl that packed her bags and went on an adventure across the world at nineteen is still inside me, and I was delighted to be accepted for the Lausanne Scholarship to continue to develop my management and leadership skills, and to have an experience that I could share with my team here at Gleneagles.
The Lausanne Hotel School is without doubt the most professional educational establishment I have ever encountered, and it is clear why it is regarded as the best in the world. The consultant Alexia’s style was aspirational, and she was incredibly engaging and delivered the program in a natural and genuine way. She gave feedback generously in an open, honest and fair manner. And the meals provided at EHL were delicious and an experience in themselves!
For me the highlight was the people. Our group came from diverse backgrounds, a range of roles and from all over Scotland, yet we gelled brilliantly. The quality of discussion in the classroom, facilitated expertly by Alexia, was so dynamic and it made me feel proud to be a part of Scottish hospitality.
The most important aspect of the course was ‘Put people at the heart of your organisation’. This has always been a strong personal value, however having the opportunity to refocus on it, and renew my commitment to it has been inspiring. I have already transcribed my course notes and thoughts which I plan to develop into a leadership course to deliver internally at Gleneagles.
I also really appreciated the opportunity to work on my intrapersonal skills and look at myself in an objective way. Understanding how other see me in a professional setting is something I hadn’t considered a great deal and Alexia’s guidance to be ‘consciously aware’ has been a real eye opener.
It really was a fantastic experience, and a moment that will stay with me forever was sitting at the Domaine du Daley vineyards in stunning sunshine, drinking Chasselas with 18 new friends, looking over gorgeous Lake Geneva and the French Alps. A great end to a day of learning!
I would highly recommend this scholarship to anyone looking to further their career as a manager in Scottish hospitality.
If you're interested in a HIT Scholarship to grow your career in Scottish hospitality, take a look here for the options