In one of the rare moments of relative calm and peace, John Fletcher sat behind his desk and with a modicum of modesty, he thought yes, a job well done. Not just today but of a career spanning nearly a half a century that had culminated in him becoming the manager of a famous and a prestigious 5 star hotel, one of the best in the country. It certainly did not come without its problems but he, l like a majestically serene swan, appeared calm and unruffled while all the hard work was being done under the water. It wasn’t always like that, he thought, and daydreamed back to when as a callow 15 year old youth he started as a bellboy at this very hotel. With youth comes a supple flexibility along with the acne and it didn’t take long for his colleagues to take advantage of this, packing him into the service elevators with tons of luggage that only he could manage to fit into and then taking the tips that he had earned. He was given the nickname of Rubber Johnny and soon all of the hotel departments were calling upon him to do odd jobs that were inaccessible to most other people. The upside of this was that “R.J’, as he became known, was familiar with every part of the enormous hotel. After 5 years he was promoted to concierge. Using his knowledge of the hotel and its surrounds like the theatres, restaraunts and other important, though not advertised, services he quickly became invaluable to the hotel and it’s clientele. It also proved very lucrative to young John.
Over the years he spent considerable time in every department of the hotel, enjoying not all of them but gaining priceless experience. The hotel arranged for him to attend a hotel management course at what was then the local Polytechnic where after 3 years he gained a diploma.
Looking back, John thought, the hardest stints were in the restaurant and banqueting and the kitchen departments. The executive head chef was a strict disciplinarian Frenchman named Michel Bridrobble who was called “Wobbler” behind his back because of his temperament and vast girth. His first job for John was pot washing and it had to be perfectly carried out for the fastidious Frenchman, after three years he reached the giddying heights of assisting with the Haute Cuisine menu for the ever treasured guests. Moving on next was the other side of the fence, as it were, to the restaurant and banqueting under the convivial wing of Don O’Farty an Irishman of considerable experience. Whilst there he came into contact with some of his old, yet familiar customers from his days as concierge. The hours were long and it seemed that he was working when every one else had gone home. As John came to the end of his musings the telephone suddenly rang and he was needed in housekeeping to sort out a problem. After nearly 50 years he thought, all in a days work.
The way in which John reached the top rung of his professional ladder is a path rarely trodden these days. Instead there are many college and degree courses for those wanting to further their education in the hospitality business. Go online to find the right institute to choose the ideal plan for your future. You will also be able to find a tutor in Hong Kong to help you with your studies if you know where to look.