As part of our ongoing series of featured alumni of Les Roches Marbella, this month in Alumni Views we bring you fellow LRM alumnus Mr. Frank Herran, who earned his Postgraduate Diploma in Hospitality Management during our October 2010 intake.
Currently serving as the Rooms Division Manager at the Gran Oasis Cancun Hotel in Mexico, Mr. Herran is passionate about his work and enjoys the challenges of being a manager in a 1,700 room hotel operation. After working several years in both Rooms Division and F&B departments, he decided that in order to advance his career he needed to highlight his academic qualifications through continued training. After evaluating the programs of the world’s top hotel management schools he chose Les Roches Marbella’s Postgraduate Diploma in Hospitality Management as the best option for his needs.
According to Mr. Herran he spent “six fantastic months” at LRM where he gained valuable knowledge and made one of his dreams come true by taking an internship in New York City for another six months. Mr. Herran always dreamed of visiting and working in New York, so when one of the city’s top five restaurants accepted his application he jumped at the opportunity. While there he oversaw the establishment’s F&B operations and learned effective methods of servicing New York’s demanding and often times difficult clientele. Mr. Herran tells us the most memorable experiences of his internship were serving a former New York City mayor, famous movie stars, politicians, and most notably counting down the New Year while working alongside his fellow colleagues in the restaurant.
Reflecting on his experience at Les Roches, Mr. Herran decidedly states that the choice to study at Les Roches Marbella has paid dividends right from the start by giving his curriculum an added edge over other professionals in the hospitality industry. Since his qualifications stood out from other candidates, he says that he was offered more interviews and better opportunities for the positions he sought out. He tells LRM that, “having a postgraduate degree nowadays is very important as this field is more and more competitive each day. You need a little extra which will make you stand out from the rest. My degree has given me this and, in addition, it helped me to obtain a wider and much deeper understanding of all hotel departments thanks to LRM’s wide range of subjects offered in the postgrad program. Furthermore, studying at Les Roches helped me to make contact with top hotel companies that come to the campus every year to interview successful pupils.”
Asked to give us his perspective for those thinking about pursuing a career in the hospitality industry, Mr. Herran had this to say: “This industry employs loads of people worldwide and therefore there are plenty of opportunities out there which require skillful and well prepared professionals. This is truer more and more each day as the industry evolves into more specialized markets that are divided into different areas of expertise. The Postgrad program will definitely help you to get there, although tremendous amounts of effort must be kept in mind as chances do not come by themselves along the way. The industry, as it evolves and grows, is in need of professionals who will manage, lead, and control tomorrow´s transactions. However, by being consistent and having a solid academic background you will be able to gather the right experience. These attributes will undoubtedly open doors for you”.
He continues by saying, “I would also suggest that you need to be customer focused as this industry is very people oriented and interacting with customers is vital for your success. You need to be passionate about this industry because only loving and caring about your work will make you jump out of your bed every morning. It’s also a very fast paced industry, so being efficient, organized, and flexible is essential.”
Mr. Herran is very proud of being part of the Les Roches Marbella community and contributes his ongoing success to the Postgrad program’s comprehensive craft-based learning approach. In his own words, “Thanks to LRM’s dedicated staff of superb professionals and their effective teaching approach, I was given an extra push to come through stronger and more knowledgeable about the industry”.
Although he is having an exciting time managing the Rooms Division at the Grand Oasis Cancun Hotel, he understands the dynamic nature of the industry and sees himself eventually managing a hotel on his own. We at the Les Roches Marbella Alumni Association wish him the best of luck in his ongoing professional development and we hope to hear more about his progress over the coming years.
Until our next feature story, best wishes to Mr. Harran and all of our fellow alumni.