In Summary
  • I was recognised and rewarded for my stellar performance, and in late 2008, I was promoted to the front office.
  • Customer service came naturally to me and in less than a year, I had moved from manning the switchboard to being the Guest Relations Manager; I was engaging our guests firsthand.

“I lost my father in 2006; I was 20 and had just graduated from college with a diploma in business. My plan had been to go on to university to study for an undergraduate in communications but with his passing, I put a pause on my education to find a job instead. My big brother did the same thing; my little sister had just joined Form One.

“I got a job as a cashier at Steak & Ale, a bar in Nairobi’s CBD. I earned a paltry Sh4,000 and worked lengthy irregular shifts, especially on the weekends. I wasn’t happy. I didn’t like the work. I was battling adult acne so my self-esteem was brutally dented; I was also still grieving the loss of my father.

“I worked there for six months then – thankfully – got another job at the business centre of Southern Sun, a hotel in Westlands. The pay was much better and I worked regular eight-hour shifts. I loved the job because it taught me patience, professionalism and a strong work ethic. The medley of clients I served also exposed me to the importance of knowing how to talk to people and understanding their individual needs. I use that skill a lot in my business now.

“I was recognised and rewarded for my stellar performance, and in late 2008, I was promoted to the front office. Customer service came naturally to me and in less than a year, I had moved from manning the switchboard to being the Guest Relations Manager; I was engaging our guests firsthand.

QUITTING WORK

“It was while here that I finally addressed the acne and started toying with make-up. The acne had left my skin dry, blotched and patchy. My face wasn’t in the best shape but the three years at the hotel had salvaged my self-esteem to the point where my smile and radiant personality made me comfortable being myself.

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