My 2nd daughter, Ashley, graduated in June with a Bachelors Degree in Hospitality Management from Cal Poly Pomona. Her emphasis was in restaurant management, and her goal is to be a chef someday. On a Friday in mid-May she had a Skype interview with a woman from the Hyatt Corporation, and she did so well that she got a job offer the following Monday, as a management trainee at the Grand Hyatt Hotel at the Dallas Fort Worth Airport.
Needless to say, my wife and I were extremely proud of her. But at the same time we had some apprehension about her moving so far away from our California home. However, as we soon found out our apprehension was unfounded.
Graduation day was June 9th and we had a wonderful graduation party the following day. I should note that one of the graduation cards she received was from her new employer, signed by her boss and her entire team. That was pretty cool.
We spent a few days loading up her car and a U-Haul trailer with all of her belongings and she set out for Big D the following Thursday morning, with my wife along to help her get settled. They made the trip after two long days of driving and arrived at the hotel the next night. At check-in, after the desk clerk found out who she was it was clear that the DFW Grand Hyatt was a very unique working environment.
They got to the room and were absolutely amazed at what they saw. There was an amazing assortment of welcome gifts, including a University of Texas baseball cap (hopefully since thrown away, given my USC Trojan pedigree), a small cowboy boot planter filled with cookies, a chef’s hat adorned with the Texas flag, a faux cowboy hat, a tray of charcuterie, wine and water bottles in the added refrigerator in the room. My wife had a personal note, signed by the head of the food and beverage group, assuring her that our daughter was in good hands and actually thanking her for “entrusting your daughter in our good care”.
And during the two weeks that they were guests at the hotel before my daughter started actually working, the entire organization was fantastic. They’d go grab a quick breakfast at the market and the staff would know who they were. They’d go to lunch or dinner and staff members and managers would go out of their way to welcome my daughter and my wife. The entire staff at that hotel made them feel like royalty. I had the good fortune to have to travel to Dallas for business at the end of those two weeks, and had dinner one night at one of their restaurants. The meal was absolutely fantastic, and the service was beyond that.
My daughter is now two months into her five month training program, and things are still great. The people are still wonderful, she’s made some good friends, and she’s been working on a great video project to promote some new concepts for the brand. She misses home, but she is enjoying the opportunity and the challenge.
I’ve been in a number of different companies in my career, some that were truly great, but I’ve never heard of a company going so overboard to making a new employee feel so welcome. Ever. As a business man, I’m very impressed. As a father, I’m overjoyed.
I’ve travelled extensively within the United States and abroad for business, staying at a wide range of hotels. But after how they treated my daughter, the Hyatt is now my favorite hotel brand. And even though I’ve had the pleasure of staying at such a wonderful hotel as the Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel in Dubai, the Grand Hyatt DFW is definitely my favorite hotel of all time.
Kelly Stephen Consulting
Software Strategy, Execution, Quality, Delivery