After a 2-year journey which saw her working the ranks in every department in various resorts all across the region, Ms Pierre and 24 other participants in Sandals Resorts International’s (SRI) Management Trainee Programme have officially shed the trainee title and will now move into management roles, following a graduation ceremony in September 2016.
The new managers were selected from a pool of 1,500 applicants 2 years ago, including applicants from Grenada, the Bahamas, Jamaica, Barbados, Antigua, the Turks and Caicos Islands and both previous employees of the Sandals/ATL Group and new recruits.
The Management Trainee Programme (MTP) identifies and grooms outstanding young Caribbean nationals to become managers in the company through a 2-year programme of hands-on learning and training at resorts across the region. All participants experience rotations through various positions and departments across the group before selecting an area of specialization. The MTP is the centerpiece of SRI’s Management Succession Planning Strategy and is one component of the company’s ongoing efforts to invest in capacity-building throughout its operations.
Ms Pierre, Grenada’s sole management trainee, specialized in Training and Development. This area focuses on development of the resort’s team talent through continuous coaching, mentoring, auditing and delivering of international hospitality courses. This branch of Human Resource Development is focused on upholding service standards throughout all departments to encourage the synergy required to maintain a reputable and successful brand.
Speaking at the graduation ceremony held at Sandals Ochi Beach Resort, Wayne Cummings, director of business processes and administration, himself a product of the MTP, reaffirmed the company’s commitment to investing in young leaders. “This Group is on the move”, he said, “this Group is growing and for us to grow and evolve we need to invest in people. We need to invest in the new leaders of the Group.”
As the graduates move into their new roles within the company, Cummings urged them to always remember their journey and treat their colleagues with respect. He said, “Remember the things you went through, remember your subordinates. They are your colleagues and they are even more important than you. Have a very healthy respect for them as you seek to lead them.”
He also reminded the new managers of the limitless potential within each of them as well as within the company. “You are competent, you are able and you are at the right place, at the right time and with the right company. The journey has just begun. We are a company on the move”, he emphasized.
In delivering his address as valedictorian, Barbadian, Kent D’Hayle expressed pride in both himself and his colleagues for successfully completing the rigorous programme. He said, “As I look into the eyes of my fellow graduates I see and feel the sense of personal pride and satisfaction knowing that we have completed a programme which sets the stage for us to continue our careers, as leaders, managing a diverse range of departments.”
Upon her return, Ms Pierre shared, “Hospitality is a lifestyle. It’s not just about going to work every day to make ends meet. It has to be a passion and you must show pride in all you do.”