Motivation,  Working abroad

The most important trait to be successful

After one year of learning all the positive and successful thoughts and shifted my thinking into other way, I left job from the financial field and went back to the US twice for the summer. In this one I will share what I did in the US and how I managed to reach my goal with the right attitude I learned during my work. (I highlighted the 3 most important traits at the end.)

In housekeeping

No matter who you are, you can still help people around you

In the first summer in 2016, I went to The Omni Homestead Resort as a housekeeper. It was strange and honestly I wasn’t fully prepared for another US summer. At home I was told to go back to work and earn a lot of money in 3 months since I came back in 2014 from camp. I was so fed up, at the same time I needed money so I applied again. My aim was only to earn a lot.

The Omni Homestead Resort

After 2 days of orientation I started to get training in cleaning rooms. On the first day I was about to die. Making the bed, cleaning the bathroom, vacuuming, etc. 12-14 rooms in 8.5 hours, where half hour was for lunch. Sometimes when we had check-out day we had to clean very fast. I didn’t know how I could manage to do all this when I would work alone. My trainers taught me really well. How to clean, how to talk to the guest. And I realized the main point was to be kind, attentive and thoughtful to the guest. That’s how they will like and eventually tip us. The reason I  chose housekeeping was because it had tip. The wage itself wasn’t a lot, only 4 USD/hour. But due to the tip and the room type we clean, it can be much more. My payment literally depended on me and how I did my work.

After 2 weeks I started to work alone. At first I had only 8-10 rooms. Few weeks later I had 14-16 rooms. It was only hard when it was a check-out day, where I had to clean everything from A-Z more than 10 rooms. I was lucky. My managers, housemen, colleagues were very thoughtful and they took a good care of me. They always helped me. Once I got 8 check-out, among of those I had 2 VIP room, which meant I had to deep-clean the room. My supervisor helped me and later even my manager, housemen came down to make the bed and clean the bathroom. That was the day when I realized how humanity should be.

My manager said: “My job is to help you.”

No matter who you are, you can still help people around you. As a manager they should know how their employee work and if it’s needed they should also give a hand. Having a high position doesn’t mean you can just sit around and order others to do this and that. But it means to have more power to help those that are in need. My managers are good examples for this.

Your strength is endless

I even did two jobs at the end of my summer since I needed more money. I worked from 3am to 6am in the pastry where I baked donuts. Then from 8:30am to 5pm I worked in housekeeping. I did this for the last 3 weeks and I didn’t have day off. Before at least I had 1 day off per week. My friends and colleagues didn’t understand how I could manage it and I didn’t even know what happened around me. My sleep was messed up so I was tired and sleepy for the whole day. When I cleaned the room I just wanted to lie down the bed and take a nap.

On the last week, once I woke up at 2am and sat on the bed. I couldn’t believe I had been working like that for 2 weeks already. That proved that incredible things can happen and human’s strength is endless. Once you decided to do something you will always find a way to do it. It doesn’t depend on your strength but on your thought and willingness.

In room service

Put an effort to understand your surroundings

Next summer I worked in room service where I had to bring the food to the guest’s room. Then later bring back the dirty dishes to the room service. It started very hard at first but in one week I got used to it. We either brought the food on table or on tray. On tray it was really hard for me to lift it at first. Though after 1 week I managed to bring it in one hand. I did shift work, sometimes in the morning, sometimes in the evening. At first I was very motivated and I was ready to work for the whole day. I got to know more people from kitchen and other restaurant.

As much dirty dishes as the table can hold

Doing work fast and effective. That’s how we earned our tip. Even here I experienced my manager and supervisors helped us when it was busy day. Sometimes even they brought the food to the guest room. And if they received tips they gave it to us. I respected my supervisors, managers a lot.
I realized a good manager is who know what their employees’ work is. Otherwise they would just make a random decision that is either impossible to carry out or just nonsense.

Working in room service was different than housekeeping. Here I didn’t work alone with 14 rooms but with 5-6 other people. I had to learn how to cooperate with them. We had to go to the kitchen for the food, share the work in room service. Sometimes we did mistakes like taking other’s food accidentally, or one person did all the work while the others just sat around. When conflict arouse my manager stepped out and talked to us separately.

I once accidentally took my colleague’s food order and there was a conflict between us and the cook. The next day my manager asked whether I was alright. Being honest and straightforwardly talk about the problems that bother us, matter a lot. If we cannot talk it out and just keep it to ourselves, sooner or later we will explode. So if there is a problem, we should have courage to talk about it. And that’s how we can solve the misunderstanding among of us so to be in a good relationship with each other. My colleagues were actually very helpful. If I did something wrong they told me straightforwadly. It might be uncomfortable to say what you think. But most of the times this is what saves you or others. So speaking your mind is how you can prevent or solve the problem.

Everything is connected

Once we had a really busy day. When we just came down from doing an order we had another order to bring up. For 4-5 hours we couldn’t stop. On our way we also had to bring down the dirty dishes otherwise we wouldn’t have trays or tables to use. When we brought down the dirty dishes we just put it on the table and did another order. After few hours room service was full of dirty dishes that ruined the whole image of our department. So my manager said, even if it was busy, when we brought down the dirty dishes we put it in the dishwasher and then did another order. Because people from different department passed by they didn’t know what we did, they only knew room service was a mess.

So even if we are busy with whatever we are doing, always make time to look neat and nice. It’s hard and unfair. But let’s say after a busy day if you look messy in front of the guest or your friends, they don’t see what you did, they only see how you look. And then they judge you.

Things might not seem to connect each other. But it does. And the effect is even bigger than we thought.
In room service if we weren’t busy we had to clean, arrange it. Such as refill the salt and pepper, condiments, drinks, bring back the dirty dishes. Usually these are the job for the busser, but in my job we didn’t have busser only a server. Some of us didn’t get why we had to do all these side jobs when we were a server. However, if we didn’t do all those side work, how could we do the main work when there was nothing to use?

Even if some work is not in our duty we should also do it. Because it’s all connected. As a server you can look down on dishwashers, but if there was no dishwasher, who wash the dishes for you to use for serving? The cook can blame the serveur for anything, but if there was no serveur how could the cook earn their payment? All in reverse and in every other field. We tend to blame others and look down on them. However just imagine if they weren’t there, would everything be alright?

If we cannot put ourselves into another person’s shoes and understand them, just imagine if they weren’t here. Think whether the world can still be alright!

In summary, what I learned in the USA to be successful was:

  • SMILE
  • Be kind, attentive, thoughtful to the others, no matter if they can do anything for you or not
  • Our strength is endless, the main point is how we think 
  • Treat others the way you want to be treated
  • Honesty is the key to understand each other
  • Your image is how they judge you. Make sure to be neat and organized.
  • Everything is all connected

I learned this during my work. I could say I was pretty successful at work. The guests liked me and tipped me well since I smiled a lot. If you are nice and joyful people will like you more and you have more opportunity. It doesn’t mean you have to bootlick everybody. But to be nice to human and understand them. I learned to put myself into another person’s shoes and treat them the way I want to be treated. For example even if I didn’t want to vacuum, I still did it, because I knew, as a guest I would expect a housekeeper to do so.

My goal was to earn a lot and I did. However, it had a price. So my next post on Sunday will be about the money.

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