Ever wonder what it would be like to work in hospitality? Whether you already have the experience or are looking for a career change, consider Island Hospitality Management, which oversees an extensive portfolio of renowned hotel brands across the country: Hilton, Hyatt, and Marriott to name a few. The company is actively hiring sales professionals for several of their 150 U.S. properties – and the roles are great for women and mothers.
Let’s look at The Residence Inn by Marriott Dallas DFW Airport North Irving, which is hiring a Sales Manager. In this role, you’d be expected to, simply put, sell hotel rooms. But this doesn’t mean manning the reservation line. Instead, you’d forge relationships with, for example, the major airlines whose pilots and flight attendants need rooms on late-night stops through DFW. Or you’d work with a professional sports team on a group block when they’re in town to play the Cowboys, Mavericks, or Stars. Or you’d create a customized package for an individual who is planning a large family reunion.
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You get the idea. As with any sales position, you’re compensated on top of your base salary with a percentage of the sales made through your clients’ customized room blocks. Not only that, if you refer a client to a different hotel within the Island Hospitality umbrella, you’ll make a commission on any sales they make there, too.
In Dallas but not into sales? Island Hospitality has 12 hotels in the Dallas area – there are a lot of brands there, which gives them flexibility in determining where someone would be a good fit. In fact, The Hyatt House Addison is hiring a Front Office Manager to run the front-desk operations, concierge service, customer interactions (including the occasional customer complaint), and some administrative duties. The role is great for someone with hotel experience or at least a hospitality degree.
Regardless of your position, no two days are ever the same, the growth opportunities are endless, and the position and company truly empower women and mothers.
According to Gregg Forde, Island Hospitality’s Executive Vice President, the company has a more dominant female workforce, with 90% of sales leadership positions held by women and an almost 50/50 split between men and women on the operations side. The sales roles follow a typical Monday-Friday schedule and autonomy grows as you do, so you don’t have to worry about missing that parent-teacher conference or your child’s recital. And, they offer a formalized training and development program called Pathways of Leadership to help female (and male) employees move to the next level and/or transition to a different hotel brand.
“Island Hospitality provides a great platform for women to start or re-launch their careers, especially in sales,” says Forde. “You don’t need to have hotel selling experience as long as you have a sales background, and there is tremendous opportunity to grow. And for those who are just starting out in hospitality, who might be transitioning from one of our brands to another, or who are simply joining as a new employee, we offer a formal training program to help ensure their success.”
Interested in Island Hospitality in cities other than Dallas? You’re in luck. They’re hiring sales managers and directors at several other hotel locations – the expectations for these roles mirror what you’ve just read about here, and Island’s commitment to women remains constant throughout. But don’t just take it from us.
We caught up with three female Island Hospitality employees from across the country to learn about their growth within the company – and their feedback speaks volumes to Island’s commitment to gender diversity, regardless of role, hotel brand, or location:
“As a woman and working mom, I feel that my time and performance have been evaluated fairly while working for IH. I have always been treated with respect by my superiors, even after three maternity leaves in three years! They recognize that I am a hard worker, and even with three small children at home, am able to accomplish my professional job of managing a hotel. The resources and support provided from the top down have been essential in my development and career with IH, and I would definitely recommend IH as a place to work for women.” – Karlie Hamilton, General Manager of Residence Inn Bothell. Karlie has been with Island Hospitality for nearly nine years, and prior to her promotion to GM three years ago, she spent three years in sales, was an assistant general manager and a director of housekeeping.
“Island has always had my best interest at mind, never putting me in a situation where I would fail. They’ve provided me a comfortable and safe environment to grow myself and my career by continuously challenging me in everything I do, driving me to push the threshold of success. In this unpredictable life, Island is where I find harmony, and I try every day to pass on that same culture and passion to my associates.” – Nicole Karski, General Manager of Homewood Suites Farmington. Nicole has been promoted three times in the last four years – once while she was pregnant.
“What I value most as a woman who works for Island Hospitality is the opportunities I was given for advancement. With the right dedication and the right attitude this company has endless opportunities… I understand women who face the challenges of leaving little ones at home. However, without Island I am not sure I would be the mother that I am to my son today.” – Debbie Diaz, General Manager of Residence Inn Addison. Debbie has been with Island Hospitality for four years, working for Marriott brands (Residence Inn, TownePlace Suites) as well as Hilton Corporate.
Island Hospitality Management’s compensation package includes all the benefits you’d expect and then some: paid vacation and sick days, 401k (plus match), comprehensive wellness coverage, bonus incentive programs, ongoing training and career development, 12 weeks of maternity leave, and yes – free room nights at their hotels.