Alumni interview: Angela Sinovas Mozo on harnessing the power of happy people

on October 5 | in Alumni Career Development Hospitality & Tourism | | with No Comments

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Angela knew early on that working with people was where she belonged. Before starting her Postgraduate Diploma at Les Roches Marbella, she had been a counselor in different summer camps and worked in hospitality operations. “I understood that people were the biggest thing behind everything. And I realized how important it is to have not just people behind a company, but happy people.”

With that in mind, Angela made a point of finding an internship in human resources as part of her Postgraduate Diploma, and she went to The Landmark London as a trainee. A year later, she was back on campus, but not as a student — instead, she was helping the hotel recruit talent from Les Roches Marbella. “I was working full time in HR, doing, among other duties, graduate and internship recruitment,” she says, “Having worked in operations before, I understood both sides.”

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In 2011, Angela joined the Human Resources department at InterContinental Hotels Group, where she had the exciting opportunity to work on the opening of the first InterContinental Hotel in London in 25 years. In a curious twist of fate, three years later Angela found herself involved in the transformation of the InterContinental London Westminster into the Conrad London St. James. “We went through a process of de-branding and re-branding for the opening,” she recalls, “I did recruitment for around 300 people, taking care of everything from uniforms to standard operating procedures, and fire plans to HR systems.”

Angela returned to her home country of Spain in 2015 for a great role at NH Hotel Group. “When I saw the vacancy, I knew it was what I wanted,” she says. “In human resources, you have the hard side — payroll, numbers — and then you have the soft side, which is talent development and looking after people. And that’s what I like most.” At NH Hotel Group’s headquarters in Madrid, Angela is in charge of managing talent and development, and finds plenty of opportunities to make a difference at her workplace. “NH is a Spanish company that has been growing fast over the last several years. We’ve launched a talent management system, for example, something that didn’t exist before I started. It’s nice to see how your work can impact a big organization.”

NH Las Tablas Hotel in Fuencarral-El Pardo district in Madrid (Spain). Opened in January 2009.

When reflecting on her time at Les Roches, Angela says, It’s true that it’s a way of life — it’s your family at the end of the day. Regardless of where you go, you always have someone to call.” From her studies, Angela also remembers “the levels of discipline — also the passion for hospitality. I remember working in the kitchen and watching the chef work like a proper Michelin-star chef.” Meanwhile, Angela is quick to point out the value of a Les Roches degree: “Students may not realize it, but the name is very important. Studying at Les Roches opens up opportunities in the hospitality industry.”

To recent Les Roches graduates, Angela has two pieces of advice. “First, take things step by step. Everyone wants everything now, but you can only achieve success if you really understand the bottom line. Think big, but keep your feet on the ground. It can’t happen from one day to another.” Secondly, Angela says, “Follow your passion. I’ve seen lots of people working in hotels who are working out of need, not passion. You can feel that, and the guests can feel that. At the end of the day, you spend more time at work than at home. Don’t just think in terms of return on investment — do what you like.”

 

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