The Company Profile
Ideal Group of Hotels is a UAE-based company, headquartered in Dubai. Established in 2007, the organisation has made a name for itself in the tourism sector, with a dominant market presence in Dubai. Its mission is to be the most hospitable company in the world. The company intends to do so by creating memorable experiences for its guests, creating a high value for its owners and having a positive impact on communities. Its main business is providing air-ticketing services, airport transfers and accommodation to business and leisure travellers around the world.
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Culture and Structure of the Organization
Ideal Hotel has a normative culture where employees are required to adhere to predefined rules and regulations. This culture stems from the company owner who believes it is useful in making sure that organisational processes flow, as they should. The diagram below shows the management structure of the organization.
Use Appropriate Methods to Evaluate Personal Skills Required to Achieve Strategic Goals
The tourism and leisure industry is a growing economic sector in the Middle East. High investor confidence and a growing global market for tourism products fan it. On one end of the business, the spectrum is the need for hotels and service providers to meet their client’s needs, while on the other side is a group of savvy customers who are looking for the best hotel and accommodation deals, not only in their host countries or regions but globally as well.
Thus, hotels need to adjust accordingly. The key to doing so is to act in a speedy, cost-effective, and productive manner. Ideal Hotel is poised to leverage these key competencies and exploit the market to maximise profitability for its shareholders and at the same time, provide value for its customers. Naturally, like all companies of its stature, Ideal Group of Hotels has a set of company goals it intends to accomplish. The company’s vision is to be the beacon of hospitality and warmth by delivering exceptional experiences to all its guests, exceeding customer service expectations, and building a professional team of dedicated and committed individuals.
The hotel’s management recognises that people possess certain sets of skills that should align with specific goals. It also recognises the variations in these skills, depending on the type of task to be accomplished and the skills set each employee possesses. According to Cottrell (2015), such skills typically refer to the competencies held by the employees and that are available to the company. Over time, these skills are honed and become useful at professional and personal levels, thus enhancing the organisation’s productivity (Pauleen 2016). However, doing so requires a critical evaluation of personal skills as outlined below:
Dedication and Hard Work: Dedication and hard work are important personal skills that are not only relevant to the accomplishment of organizational goals but also useful to the personal success of employees. At Ideal Hotels, such skills are often rewarded through promotions, which allow employees to scale the management ladder. This way, it increases the profile of the workers, making them more visible in the organisation.
It is a key management principle for Ideal Hotels to retain such employees because the management understands that such employees are essential to the accomplishment of organisational goals. For example, being a marketing manager in the organisation, I have to make sure that the company is a leader to the rest. Since our business model is mainly business-to-business, I have to look at the company profile of potential clients to get a clear understanding of the kind of products they want and strive to provide them with the same. This way, I ensure that when I make my pitch, it addresses the corporate needs of the clients.
Stress Management: Stress management is an important skill to possess at Ideal Hotels because employees are often exposed to a highly stressful environment. If one does not know how to “keep his cool,” it is highly likely that he would crumble under such kinds of pressures. However, Lee (2014) points out that manageable stress levels are good for employees because they keep them alert.
The opposite is true because if employees are not exposed to stressful situations, they may start to slack. At this point, it is important to note that exposing employees to too much stress could “break them” and force them to take unwarranted actions that could eventually jeopardize the accomplishment of organisational goals (Zumitzavan & Michie, 2015). Each organisational task at Ideal Hotels comes with its own kind of problems, and not everyone knows how to manage them. Working as a manager at the hotel, I am constantly under a high level of stress from my managers to get new businesses and to maintain, or nurture, existing client relationships.
Often, frustration weighs me down because when I have a strategy to accomplish my goals, I am limited by time constraints and budget limitations. To manage these kinds of pressures, I often engage in periodic exercises, at least one hour a day, to relax the mind and the body. I also like to engage in deep breathing exercises, taking timely breaks, making time for hobbies and hanging out with family members, like other strategies for managing this problem. Although these strategies help a lot, it is inconceivable to believe that such stress would totally disappear. Therefore, I believe the key is in managing it.
Being Time Conscious: Time is not a renewable resource. Indeed, in most of our personal or professional endeavours, time is of vital importance. Furthermore, most of our goals, as employees of Ideal Hotels are often time-sensitive. Therefore, to get the best out of it, it is essential to prioritise the important activities over others that could wait. However, it may be difficult to juggle different responsibilities that fall under the same time schedule because one is bound to suffer. This situation may add to an employee’s physical and mental stress. At Ideal Hotels, time is an invaluable asset and is accorded paramount importance in the accomplishment of organisational goals.
The same is emphasised during service delivery because managers always want the clients to feel that they have the best value for not only their money but also their time. Working as one of the managers at the hotel, I am constantly under pressure to meet tight deadlines. To make sure I meet my goals (and by extension, the organisation’s goals), I often schedule my daily activities on my smartphone. This way, I know what to do on any given day, and the amount of time I should allocate to the activity. By doing so, I am guaranteed to complete all the tasks I have set out to do.
Apply Techniques to Assess the Professional Skills Required to Support the Strategic Direction of the Organization
Besides personal skills, employees also require a set of professional skills to help them accomplish their goals or to allow them to do so in a timely and satisfactory manner (Carlopio et al. 2012). Nonetheless, these skills are usually contextualised to the job responsibilities and roles of the employees. Therefore, an employee’s professional skills need to be polished, depending on the kinds of work they do. At Ideal Hotels, different job groups require different sets of professional skills. In my line of work, multitasking, coaching, planning and decision-making are essential skills for the fulfilment of workplace goals.
Indeed, the Ideal Hotel strives to meet different sets of needs and requirements for different customers, depending on their corporate needs. The diversity in client pool requires different sets of skills to manage the needs and expectations of clients. Based on a review of my professional skills, the subsequent section of this report outlines my findings, relative to the professional skills required in my job description.
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Communication Skills: As a marketing manager at Ideal Hotels, effective communication is important in reaching out to clients and understanding their needs and requirements. My skills, in this regard, are excellent in both written and oral senses. By exercising these skills, I am able to articulate to my superiors what the organisation needs to do to meet client needs. Coupled with my flexibility in balancing client and organisational requirements, I have been the bridge between the two sets of business ends.
Multitasking: Multitasking involves juggling multiple duties at the same time. Naturally, it is stressful to do so, but certain types of jobs come with this challenge. As a marketing manager, I have to carry out different tasks and make sure my juniors do the same. They report to me. Similarly, I am supposed to process the information they give to me and present periodic reports to my superiors based on the same. At the same time, I am the head of research and the key trainer of the department. I am supposed to induct new employees into the workplace roles and use the information I obtain from my research to improve existing marketing strategies.
The challenge with undertaking multiple roles in this sense is maintaining attention, getting the desired results, and managing multiple streams of information. Such types of responsibilities often require equal attention and are supposed to be completed at specific times, thereby creating the need for multitasking. To make sure that I do not compromise the quality of my work, I often focus on the value of the job I do and not necessarily on the associated volume.
Problem Solving: Most senior management positions put managers at decision-making levels, thereby requiring them to solve different types of problems in their job/role contexts (Cottrell 2012). In my position as a marketing manager, I often have such types of challenges because I am required to make decisions frequently. They may revolve around how to know the needs of awkward customers, presenting an argument for increased funding for my department, or developing a strategy to scale existing marketing strategies to meet the needs of today’s modern and fast-paced customer. To manage these problems, I always tap into my analytical capabilities and adopt a lateral thinking strategy that would help me to identify where the problem lies and the best kinds of solutions that could be employed to solve them.
Carry Out a Skills Audit to Evaluate the Strategic Skills Needed to Meet Current and Future Leadership Requirements
A skills audit is similar to a gap analysis whereby the skills of an employee are weighed, relative to the kinds of skills required to meet specific organisational goals. By conducting this analysis, it would be easy for employees to understand those skills that need cultivation and nurturing. To carry out an effective skills audit, it is important for employees to list down the skills they already have in one list and to develop another list that contains a different set of skills that they wish to possess, relative to the kinds of jobs they do. The next step should be the involvement of a third party that will evaluate the skills and help employees to develop strategies that would allow them to meet these skills. A common technique used around the world to do so is to evaluate an employee’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT).
In my role as a marketing manager, I have come to understand that my most important skills are analytical and research-based. However, to improve my position in the organisation, I need to improve my sales and communication skills because the tourism industry is highly demanding, competitive, and unpredictable. Having excellent communication skills is vital to my success as a marketing manager because I am at a pivotal point in the organisational hierarchy where I convey to the top management about market changes and how they could exploit the opportunities that exist.
The failure to brush up on these communication skills could be detrimental to my success because the top management would fail to understand what is going on in the market and equally fail to appreciate the dynamics of the market that are critical to the success of the business. Thus, communication is at the centre of the hotel’s success because it bridges the gap between the business and the customers.
My sales skills are equally important to the success of the business and my personal growth because I have to be magnanimous in managing frustrating clients and understanding how best to meet their needs. More importantly, customers often have changing tastes and preferences that need the attention and flexibility of our department. The failure to do so could lead to poor organisational responses to market needs and career stagnation because as a manager, I need to adapt and demonstrate flexibility in the face of changing market dynamics. In other words, sales strategies that worked in the past may fail to work today because of changing customer preferences and tastes. For example, today, online sales strategies are effective in maintaining customer relationships and seeking new clients. The same was not true in the past. Therefore, it is essential to be abreast with changing market dynamics that could affect the business. Improving my sales strategy is at the core of this success.
Apart from the above-mentioned skills, I have also learned other small, but important, skills in my practice. For example, I have come to appreciate the importance of having good coordination skills because some of the work we do in the marketing department overlaps with the roles of other departments. For example, there is a significant overlap in roles between the marketing and finance departments because the success of the finance section depends on the success of the marketing plan. Similarly, the success of the marketing department depends on the success of the organisation’s financial plan. As such, I have come to appreciate the importance of interdepartmental coordination. Based on the assessment of my strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats highlighted above, the table below summarizes the SWOT analysis of my skills.
|Strengths ||Weaknesses |
|Opportunities ||Threats |
Apply Appropriate Techniques to Identify Preferred Learning Style
The preferred learning style for this assignment is the Honey and Mumford learning style. This learning style outlines four groups of learners – activist, reflector, pragmatist, and theorist. According to the diagram below, each learner group has unique preferences. The activist often prefers doing and experiencing an activity, while the pragmatist often prefers to start something new, and see if it works, or not. The theorist often strives to understand the underlying reasons for why things are the way they are, while the reflector observes things for what they are and reflects on them.
Based on the different categories of learners outlined in the aforementioned theory, I believe my personality and characteristics fit within the pragmatist category. In other words, I prefer to “have a go” at things and see if they would work for me, or not. Within this learning group, I like to prioritize on the following points:
- Being open-minded.
- Keen on trying and experimenting new ideas.
- Seek concepts that would apply to my work.
- Being practical and down-to-earth.
Construct a Personal Development Plan that Meets Leadership Development Requirements Identified in the Skills Audit
A personal development plan is important in understanding how a person’s internal skills fit within the wider organisational context, or how they align with the organisational requirements. A personal development plan would also underscore what I have achieved while working for Ideal Hotels. Furthermore, it would help me to understand the skills that I need to develop to further improve my position in the organisation and improve my career as a result. To make the right decisions about this personal development plan, I have to know the correct information about existing skills and market dynamics that need to be improved. Only then can I develop an informed personal development plan. Nonetheless, certain attributes are always present in most personal development plans. They appear below:
Aim: It is important to have a personal aim, which will guide the development plan because without it, the outlined plans would be misdirected. According to Lee (2014), such aims should be attainable; otherwise, they should be dropped. My aim is to acquire a master’s degree, which will increase the possibility of being considered for future promotions. It will also help me to improve my professional skills in marketing.
Specificity: The concept of specificity means that the aforementioned aims should be definitive and concrete. In the context of my analysis, I hope to complete my master’s degree in two years and get a promotion thereafter.
Realism: Realism refers to the concept of achievability. In other words, the aims set out in this report should be attainable. To get a promotion, I have to complete my master’s degree. I have the finances needed to pursue this course and the commitment required to complete it, regardless of my busy schedule.
Time bound: according to Management Training Australia (2015), it is important for all goals to have a deadline of achievement. Time limitations help people to show a high level of commitment towards the realisation of their goals. As mentioned earlier, I expect to complete my master’s degree in two years. To do so, I will allocate two hours each weekday and half a day on Saturdays to attend classes. Upon completion of the degree, I hope to be promoted within a year.
Use Suitable Methods to Assess the Outcomes of a Personal Development Plan against Personal Work Objectives
The goal setting process and the accomplishment of set tasks depends on how pragmatic an individual is to set and follow them. The following analysis provides a plan of how I intend to assess the outcomes of my personal development plan. I will share my plan with my friends and tell them how I intend to achieve them. By doing so, I will be making myself accountable to third parties because I know they will make follow-ups. This pressure is positive for my personal growth because it will motivate me to work harder. I also expect to share my plan with a few of my colleagues and encourage them to develop similar plans. At the end of a specified period, we will sit together and compare notes to know who slacked and who did well.
Evaluate the Impact of own Learning against the Achievement of Strategic Goals
Since learning is a lifelong process, it is pertinent to compare my progress with specific strategic goals. As mentioned in this paper, my personal goal is to get a promotion after getting a master’s degree. I know that my job as a marketing manager is good, but I need to improve my skills further by seeking mentors who have walked down the same path I intend to follow. I will rely on them as “guardian angels” because they understand the industry, the nature of my job, and the kinds of challenges that stand before me. I will strive to use their skills effectively and be pragmatic while implementing them.
In the same breadth of analysis, I also intend to have a definitive schedule of actions that would allow me to compare my progress with what I have set out to do. I believe that if all employees at Ideal Hotels take a close examination of their skills and competencies, viz-a-viz the organisational expectations, they would be in a better position to excel in their careers. Therefore, I believe that this exercise is useful in helping me to succeed.
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