Starboard celebrates success of graduate development programme

Starboard Hotels has celebrated its latest graduates from its UK-wide employee career development course with an awards ceremony hosted by company managing director and  industry leader Keith Griffiths.

The graduation, held at the Best Western Carlton Hotel in Blackpool, saw the cohorts, all Starboard Hotel employees, receive their certificates and congratulations after completing the year-long training course, known as SHAPE, Starboard Hotels Accelerator Programme for Employees.

The course, now in its second year, is aimed at developing the future leadership skills and
careers of team members from Starboard Hotels, owners of the Best Western Carlton and 20 other hotels across the country, including leading Lancashire hotel, the award winning Holiday Inn Express in Burnley.

Starboard said SHAPE provides “ambitious and talented” team members from across the company’s multi branded portfolio of hotels, which includes brands IHG, Ibis, Days Inn, Best Western and own branded properties The Windermere Manor and The Cliffden in Devon with the opportunity to “enhance their leadership qualities and maximise their growth potential”.

The students including SHAPE cohorts from Sarboard’s revenue office in Chorley, hotels in Gatwick, Tamworth, Derby, the Lake District, Crewe and Birmingham, all completed an “intense” year of training, making their final presentations to the Starboard senior directors Keith Griffiths and group operations director Kerian Barnes at the Best Western Carlton hotel last week.

Through a series of set modules, workshops and different training tasks, the SHAPE course, delivered by Sarah Fountain, covered “every aspect of what it takes to run a hotel” including insights into the supply chain, hotel revenue management, housekeeping, food ad beverage, marketing and other vital operational functions.

Griffiths said: “We put leadership right at the heart of our business. We can’t be successful without great people and great leadership happens in our hotels everyday. It is amazing to see how much you have all achieved on this programme and how well it works.

“All of those on SHAPE have shown amazing commitment and have learnt a great deal about themselves as well as the business. Congratulations to everyone.”

Barnes said: “This is the second tranche of our hotel teams who have participated in the SHAPE course and it has been another full-on year for them. Working in partnership with many of our suppliers has been really insightful as they too have a vested interest, sharing their knowledge, driving best practice, building relationships and sharing in our quest to keep great people within our business.

“Encouraging people to work in the hospitality industry and to see it as a long term career has never been more important. We want to be the employer of choice and have had to look to enhance the training available through the brands, which is excellent but is very specific. SHAPE is designed to broaden our team’s horizons and is a blend of leadership, personal development and high level management training.”

He added: “There are 4.5 million workers employed across hospitality and tourism as a whole, and it is the fourth largest industry in the UK contributing 10% of GDP. Training and developing our people is vital.”

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