We had the pleasure to interview Joanna a few weeks ago. She is the head of HR for a top global hospitality group and gave us a few mins to run through a couple of questions with her.
- You work for one of the most well recognised and luxury hospitality groups in the world – how did you end up in the hospitality industry?
I was lucky and knew that hospitality was the industry for me from a very young age, I love working with people and making them happy. I love experiencing great service and new adventures and there is always something more that you can learn and improve on.
- Did you always want to work in Human Resources?
My first love is hospitality which is all about people and the HR part came after but is pretty perfect as it is people working in a people industry so that fit pretty well!
- What advice would you give to anyone interesting in pursuing HR as a career?
HR is all about people, so the best advice I can give is to be able to listen, empathise and then try and find a solution – but above all just be honest!
- What is your biggest challenge as a HR Business Partner?
Dealing with multiple & different situations all at the same time- every person in our workforce is an individual and with different needs.
- What is it like working in hospitality compared to other industries?
Working in hospitality is a real passion for me, you can learn the job within a business but to truly succeed in hospitality you have to love the industry. There is just something about it that gets you hooked, people who like to help people!
- If you could change one thing about your role what would it be?
Paperwork…there is a lot of paperwork, it is a necessary part to keep accurate documentation…but still if there was one thing that would be it!
- Working in hospitality we imagine you must have travelled a lot and stayed in some rather fancy places – what are your top 3 destinations?
Difficult! I have a real love of America having spent a lot of time there when I was younger… so Walt Disney World is no. 1 as I had my first job there straight out of university and it was a blast!
Then Australia as I have a lot of family there and have spent some wonderful times, it is so huge there is always something new to see and I am trying that every time I visit I go to a place I have never been before!
Finally … I have been lucky enough to go to Kenya a few times as I have friends living there and the safari that I went on was one of the best experiences of my life… I really don’t think that I will be able to top Lewa!
Please do get in touch if you are looking for a career in HR or if you are looking for HR talent!
0203 866 8931