Think of travel, and chances are that you think of Hilton. In fact, according to Clay Snyder ‘93 ’15 Hon, Senior Director Brand Performance of Full Service Brands for Hilton Worldwide and Johnson & Wales University Trustee, “the name Hilton is synonymous with ‘hotel’ around the world.” Snyder moderated a panel of current students and alumni who have work experience with the international hospitality brand, and he and other Hilton team members fielded questions from current Johnson & Wales students during Hilton Day. This annual event held on the Providence Campus was hosted by the School of Hospitality and Experiential Education & Career Services on September 23, 2015.
During the hour-long symposium, the group offered interview advice. Here their top-three tips for success:
- Proof Your Résumé. Sarah Drew, Director of Learning and Talent at Waldorf Astoria New York, stressed the importance of proofing your resume for errors and making sure it is polished and professional. Does it accurately reflect your experience and accomplishments? Does it show that you have taken advantage of opportunities and worked in different departments to broaden your hotel experience? Make sure you put your best foot forward: After all, it is your first impression.
- Pay Attention to Your Appearance. In a customer-facing occupation such as hospitality, it’s no surprise that you need to ensure you dress the part for the interview. That said, technology has added another layer to the screening process: Hilton uses HireVue, a virtual interview where candidates record and upload their responses. Drew added that in addition to the outfit you choose, you also need to “think about your surroundings.”
- Prepare for Potential Interview Questions. Drew says she expects candidates to be able to talk about themselves and “what they have done and what they have achieved.” Vicente Jaramillo, Director of Human Resources at Waldorf Astoria New York, shared the “importance of being able to tell your ‘self story’ and share personal experiences that sets you apart from others.” Drew added that you should be able to relate these personal experiences to your professional growth and development. Finally, the best interviewees find a way to communicate “what they are passionate about outside of work and show they have a work-life balance,” she said.
Snyder stated that obtaining a hospitality degree from JWU can automatically set you apart from the applicant pool at Hilton. The company recruits Johnson & Wales students because “they know how to get the job done better than anyone else.” The Hilton Foundation has supported JWU students through a $1 million gift to be used for student scholarships, and it continues to support education through annual scholarships awarded to students enrolled in hospitality management programs throughout the U.S.
Hilton Worldwide is one of the premier brands in the hospitality industry today with more than 325,000 team members worldwide serving more than 140 million guests annually. Snyder said, “There are many opportunities available today … Hilton is a fast-growing global company and [Johnson & Wales students] will have a great role to play in that growth.”
‘The best interviewees find a way to communicate ‘what they are passionate about outside of work and show they have a work-life balance’ ‘