ericaamber

Doiley Notes

In Uncategorized on June 17, 2010 at 10:45 pm

I may need to google how to spell doiley because I can’t seem to get it right. Anyhow, so sorry about the delay in writing. It’s been a crazy few weeks. I worked 140 hours this pay period. 130 in my home department (banquets) and another 10 in the restaurant. So needless to say I haven’t had much time for anything but work, gym, and sleep. SO, keeping that in mind, I have a few things to say. I wrote on a doiley (hence my confusion about spelling the word. I need to use it!!) while I was working a bar a few days ago to remind me of the things I need to write about. My iphone decided to stop working a few days ago which was devastating for me, but I’ve procured a new one and life as I know it shall go on.

To start off with maybe I’ll talk about the last few days. We’ve had a group of executives from a huge oil company in the hotel for about a week and they’ve been living a breathing in banquets. Also we had the Canadian Tire executives in and we are trying to steal their business permanently from other hotels so the staff had to bend over backwards making sure they got everything they wanted. The oil company is the one I’d like to talk about specifically because we went all out for them. These people are a big deal. A few of them had just flown back into town for this conference from South Africa from the World Cup. On their private jets. Which they will be taking back to watch the rest of the cup. Yea. For true. They have their own jets. That’s plural. JetS. Anyhow, their organizer planned a huge event the other night with our head chef that was extravagent to say the least. They created an ‘Iron Chef’ type dinner where the 80 people were divided into teams and each team (under the supervision of a Rimrock chef) cooked a meal. Each team represented a country. Each team leader received an engraved iron chef silver spatula. And we didn’t do this inside. No sir, we did it outside the pool on the patio terrace under tents with heat lamps. As you can imagine, this required a huge amount of set up on our part. We rolled portable bars out of the parking garage and down hills, we moved 26 8 foot tables from the 6th floor down to the 3rd and outside, we clothed and skirted all those tables as well as pinned flags and table numbers to them. I was assigned to the bar which I was very excited about until it started thundering, hailing and pouring. The portable bar was kind of under an awning that ended up leaking and pouring all over us, I have never been so cold in my life. Still the group drank an admirable amount of alcohol and managed to complete the event with not a single mishap. It was amazing to watch so many departments come together to make something this huge happen and go so smoothly (from the guest’s point of view anyway). It was unreal.

Oh my goodness. I have so much to blog about. I’ve been really feeling like I’ve been learning so much about myself and what I want out of not just this job, but also life in general. And I’ve met some seriously amazing people that I really think I will always have in my life.

One of my goals is to take something about a manager in my workplace and identify a trait of theirs that I like and discuss it and analyze whether or not I have that particular trait and what I can do to include it in my management style. So, keeping that in mind, I’m going to discuss one of my managers that I worked with quite a lot this month while training up on night shifts. He has a very big personality, always very jovial and loud. He’s very good with guests as he is quite personable. He has a super high energy level, which is what I’m looking at today. I think that I also have a very large personality, which is why I identify with this particular trait. I think that seeing someone else with a trait similar to mine has made me  really analyze the good and the bad. On the good side, energetic loud people have a fairly easy time motivating others and keeping up the team moral. This is very useful particularily in my home department where we are often working anywhere from 12 – 18 hour shifts and when you’re carrying 8 foot tables around at 2am after being at work since 8am, having someone to keep your spirits up can be crucial. On the other hand, loud energetic people can be really annoying. Especially when you’re tired and I’m not. Also, this particular trait can often go hand in hand with being easily distracted by work, people, shiny things, etc. This is something I’ve noticed in myself and also my manager. I love this aspect of my personality and am very interested in watching how my manager utilizes it in his management style. However, observing him has made me a little more conscious of my own energy levels and trying to tone it down sometimes isn’t a bad idea. I tend to get carried away and sometimes it isn’t necessarily appropriate or necessary. This week I’m working on keeping my enthusiasm and energy at an appropriate level and trying not to scare people. I think this self awareness will help me to use my high energy personality to it’s fullest potential without sacrificing who I am, while still being an effective manager.

I’ve discovered something interesting. I’ve always thought of myself as a fairly adaptive person. I adjust to new situations and people quite quickly. Leaving on this co-op was a fantastic opportunity to test this theory. Leaving my comfort zone for somewhere new, I wasn’t entirely sure how I’d react, since I’ve never really packed up my life before. I’ve done lots of travelling, even for months at a time, but this is different. I was pleased to discover that I was correct and I do indeed adapt quickly. My best friend here came to Banff from Vancouver and is originally from Edmonton. She has been having a hard time adjusting and talking to her about her problems has made me realize how quickly I really do adapt. I think that part of this is due to the fact that I am so obsessive compulsive that I HAVE TO have my routines in order to feel comfortable. Therefore the first thing I did when I got here was satisfied my compulsions and obsessions which immediately made me more comfortable. I never thought of my condition as a blessing before but it’s really made it easier for me to settle in. Home is where I can train and count things. Sad but true. I’ve also realized that I thrive on change. I’m never happier than when I’m learning something new or meeting new people. I’ve developed a theory that the larger one’s comfort zone is, the easier it is to become complacent. I found myself bored at home, too comfortable, and becoming complacent. I think that the more comfortable I get, the more complacent I become, and that causes me to not do my best work. I really excel when I’m learning a new skill or trying something hard, or pushing myself beyond what I think is possible. My comfort zone is large, therefore I need to keep myself constantly challenged, which is why I love this industry I think, there’s always something new and exciting to do or see and new people to meet everyday. I love it.

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