Core Values Matter: A Story of Class

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She had no idea what she was doing. Not having any experience in the hotel industry, yet having over a decade of experience in customer service, she knew she could handle it. Biting off more than she could chew and figuring it out as she went along was kind of her thing. No one could tell she was new to the industry as she carried herself with a level of confidence that was almost intimidating.

A wealthy gentleman approached the front desk and she greeted him with a champagne flute as she asked where he was traveling from. Hurriedly, he hung up his phone call and dismissively responded. Unaffected, she requested his identification and credit card as the genuine smile never left her face. He scoffed at her ability to be so happy in such a “meaningless” role. Though she had never been talked to in such a demeaning way, she kept her composure. It seemed to take everything within her to not let his energy affect her as she tried to continue a pleasant conversation with him. She shrugged off his attempt to degrade her, stating “I’m grateful to be employed by, and represent, such an incredible company – every role is imperative to our success.” 

She slowly slid the personal cards back across the long marble counter and graciously asked him if he’d like a map of the building to ensure he found his room. As he swiftly picked up the cards, he assured her that he just needed the key to his room – so she obliged by circling the number on the room card envelope and pointing to the elevator. “Have a great evening, sir. I hope your stay is restful.” 

His roller bag echoed across the lobby as he rushed toward the elevator and answered another phone call. He impatiently waited for the door to open and finally walked inside. She felt a peace come over her as the door slowly closed and the elevator exited to the 16th floor. Lacing her fingers together and stretching them overhead as she tilted her head to the left, then to the right, she heard footsteps behind her. She quickly regained her composure and straightened her blouse by pulling on the bottom hem. 

As he walked up next to her he acknowledged, “It seems as though we had an unpleasant guest arrive a little while ago. I had the opportunity to hear your conversation.” She grew nervous as her boss continued to explain what he had witnessed. “I am impressed with your ability to keep your composure despite his rude behavior. You are a class act, Sidney. I am honored you are on our team. We are here to support you, so please know we will always be here in situations similar to what you just faced.” 

He nodded to ensure she was all right; she smiled and nodded back as she responded, “I appreciate your support. I’m honored to work with you.”

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