In our newest “Influencer within the highlight” phase, we’re joined by certainly one of hospitality’s most interesting skilled. Safet Dokara, Director of Operations at Valencia Resort Group, discusses his skilled insights, opinions, and views on present expertise tendencies within the hospitality trade.

Safely discusses his private {and professional} journey, from arriving in USA with out figuring out any english to working within the kitchens and in the end rising to Director of Operations of a serious Resort chain.

Superior Hospitality Applied sciences: Safet Dokara, the Director of Operations at Valencia Resort Group I’m very grateful and excited to be interviewing you. You could have been on this enterprise for a very long time and have huge expertise within the hospitality trade. Are you able to inform us about your skilled journey, the key to your success, and the core values ​​at your office?

Secure Dokara: Due to my pure expertise to supply service and my outgoing character I all the time needed to affix the hospitality trade. My former nation Yugoslavia, (principally Croatia in fashionable days) had a powerful tourism trade and I all the time needed to be a part of it. After the struggle within the 90s, I used to be fortunate to get the chance to come back to the USA, and now I needed to plan my profession right here. Not figuring out English, I grabbed the very first job that my company Interfaith Ministry supplied me. It was a kitchen steward job on the native nation membership, and that’s the place my hospitality profession began. As I realized English, I used to be in a position to get the chance to guide the crew and I used to be promoted to a administration place. After spending three years in that nation membership, I joined the resort trade. I moved up shortly via the management place and by 2006 I used to be promoted to the chief degree in a luxurious resort. Since then, I labored in numerous management roles in resort operations and am at the moment in a company workplace, serving to with growth and coaching.

I do not suppose I’ve a secret to success. Early on in my profession I created good habits and by no means deserted them. A robust working ethic is without doubt one of the keys to success, in addition to being versatile and prepared to adapt to alter. I used to be lucky to have a number of nice mentors round me and I totally took the benefit of their experience and willingness to share their data and assist me develop my abilities. I consider I’m a fast learner and open-minded and I study quick, and I used to be all the time wanting to do all the things that was in my energy to accumulate new abilities. I strongly counsel to younger leaders to seek out not just one good mentor however extra of them and use their experience and steerage as a lot as attainable. As I grew my profession, I all the time tried to encompass myself with nice individuals and create a optimistic work atmosphere, and repair tradition. A wonderful service tradition all the time attracted extra proficient professionals and made my job straightforward and helped me achieve success.

Superior Hospitality Expertise: We want to know extra about Valencia Resort Group, and the way your resort maintains the best requirements available in the market to draw company. Are you able to inform us about it?

Secure Dokara: Valencia group is a novel resort firm in some ways. It’s well-known for creating and constructing lovely motels with superb designs in rigorously chosen places. We’re additionally well-known for our wonderful service that creates nice experiences and long-lasting reminiscences for our company. We pleasure ourselves on offering wonderful and customized service that we name “Hospitality with coronary heart”. We constantly give attention to the event and coaching of our groups and that method we’re in a position to always keep the highest degree of service and be a frontrunner in our respective markets. We additionally create a service tradition the place each worker is empowered to do no matter it takes to exceed company’ expectations and fulfill company’ requests. We dwell by “If the visitor request is authorized, we by no means say no”

Superior Hospitality Expertise: In your opinion, how can the hospitality trade profit from utilizing expertise, and what technological improvements have been adopted by your resort to date?

Secure Dokara: There are a number of methods hospitality can profit from expertise. We definitely must take the benefit of expertise and offset the labor scarcity. We’re within the technique of integrating a number of programs that can simplify communication not solely with our company but in addition between our staff. We’ll use QR code expertise to allow company’ touchless communication with out ever utilizing something besides their gadgets. We’re additionally utilizing just a few platforms to streamline the hiring course of and help us in managing labor.

Superior Hospitality Expertise: Which Hospitality exhibitions and conferences do you favor to attend and take part in as an exhibitor or speaker?

Secure Dokara: The Lodging Convention is my favourite, it’s nicely organized and has an enormous attendance( over 2, 500 this 12 months) I additionally attend HITEC and Hunter conferences. I participated as a speaker at The Lodging Convention and HITEC convention.

Superior Hospitality Expertise: What challenges did your resort face post-Covid-19 and do you suppose the expertise has modified the hospitality trade and administration? Share your viewpoint with us.

Secure Dokara: Identical to each different hospitality institution, we confronted an enormous labor scarcity. Shedding many staff impacted our well-known service tradition and we needed to prepare all new staff from floor zero. As I discussed above, we use expertise to help us to beat labor shortages and make our operations more practical and environment friendly.

Superior Hospitality Expertise: What recommendation would you give to younger skills prepared to affix the hospitality trade?

Secure Dokara: Hospitality is an incredible trade and presents over 200 totally different careers. Not solely is all the time enjoyable and dynamic however presents fairly quick upward shifting and allows quick profession progress.

Hospitality is one of some industries that’s identified to advertise inside and it is not uncommon that somebody that began as a bellman to grow to be a basic supervisor.

Superior Hospitality Expertise: What expertise gaps are nonetheless persistent within the Hospitality trade, and the way can expertise assist motels enhance their visitor expertise?

Secure Dokara: I consider that many corporations are nonetheless struggling to find out find out how to harness expertise, therefore there are nonetheless gaps. Many corporations are nonetheless utilizing outdated, archaic programs that aren’t prepared to evolve and enhance. I consider that programs integrations and streamlining processes utilizing expertise are the best way to go, and firms which are versatile and revolutionary and work intently with the hospitality trade will take a lead and steal market share within the close to future.

Superior Hospitality Expertise: We’re excited to know extra about your pursuits, hobbies, and the way you spend your free time with your loved ones and mates.

Secure Dokara: I like spending time with my household. We love touring when busy schedules allow. I additionally immensely get pleasure from cooking and spending time on my porch with household and mates.

I like watching and enjoying sports activities with my boys, soccer being the highest one, in addition to mountain climbing when have time. I additionally get pleasure from listening to books and management podcasts whereas driving.

Superior Hospitality Expertise: Are you able to title some hospitality influencers that impressed you and helped you in your profession to date?

Secure Dokara: As I discussed beforehand, I used to be privileged to work with a number of nice hospitality professionals and leaders that impressed me, mentored me, and formed my profession.

1: Saddiq Mir, Hospitality Skilled, and my mentor

2: Juan Ruiz, Hospitality skilled, and my mentor

3: George Cozonis, Hospitality Skilled, and my mentor

4: Roy Kretschmer, Hospitality Skilled, and my mentor

5: Fritz Gietschner, Govt Grasp Chef and my mentor

Superior Hospitality Expertise: Secure, are you able to advocate 5 people everybody ought to comply with if they’re critical a couple of profession in Hospitality Trade?

Secure Dokara:

1: Horst Schulze, Legendary founding father of luxurious model Ritz Carlton and hospitality trade legend

2: Daniel Goleman, Pioneer of Emotional Intelligence science that vastly determines leaders’ success

3: Simon Sinek, American creator, and motivational speaker

4: Gilda Perez, International Chief Govt Officer of JLL Resorts & Hospitality

5: Chip Conley, is without doubt one of the iconic founders of the fashionable boutique resort motion

Maria Farooqui

Group Supervisor

Pushed group supervisor with knowledgeable Social media data, adept at world advertising methods and social media platforms. Progressive thinker with a ardour for connecting manufacturers with the general public via digital advertising, social media campaigns, PR occasions and client information analytics.

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