Membership, Communication and Design Manager: Santa Ana Country Club, Costa Rica
Q: When you were young, what did you want to be when you grew up and please explain if there was a story around that.
A: As a child I grew up among magazines, books and all things related to design and communication, my dad had a printing company. My two parents were very creative, service oriented and a full devotion for details and perfection.
In every page of the multiple magazines that came home, I was always looking at the advertising campaigns for hotels, restaurants, and airlines… dreaming about having a job at a hotel. My dream motivated me to study graphic design and communication but inside me, there was always a sounding voice around service and hospitality.
Q: What is one or two interesting facts about your heritage that you would like to share with us?
A: Two interesting facts about my country are its people and tourist places. For me, Costa Rica is the most beautiful place to vacation due to its beaches, mountains, and animal diversity. Our people are candid, there is no army, which in times of war, I can say I am lucky to live in a country where there is hope, safety and a peaceful environment and still we can live happy.
As a woman in Latin America, I felt fortunate and grateful for all the opportunities that I have had, and the goals I have achieved – it is hard as a woman to be noticed, even in these modern times. I will continue to empower myself and other women, so we can continue making a difference.
Q: Who got you into the business of hospitality and what was your first experience at a club?
A: A friend told me about a new club that was being built in our country, at that time I was working as an event planner for weddings, private parties, social and corporate events. I started to research the club and the job description was fascinating. It had a little bit of all the things that I love to do – customer service, hospitality, public relations, sports, restaurants… it was similar to what I had wondered and dreamed about as a child.
My experience from day one has been incredible – every day my work surprises me with big and new challenges, this keeps me inspired and energized.
Q: Was there a mentor that helped guide you along your current career path and was there a piece of advice that helped you along your way?
A: My family and close friends have helped me grow and develop as a person and professionally, in addition to the learnings of life. I have always had an entrepreneur spirit, been resilient, persistent and being a perfectionist in all I do. I believe that with good intention, inner strength, and my unique capabilities I was able to deliver on my commitments and overcome the different challenges. In all the areas I have worked, I have always had a relationship with clients where I have had to show great empathy, deliver customer satisfaction, and ensure my clients were happy and satisfied with the service provided.
The best advice I ever received was, “Any time you have the opportunity to change something or someone for the greater good, stick to it, be persistent and things will come at the perfect time.”
Q: How long have you worked for Troon and what has been your career progression; what do you love most about your job?
A: I started at the club when it was being built, planning the grand opening. It will soon be 4.5 years since I joined this great place to work.
My first job assignment was to assist and guide new members in their purchase process, database, registrations and guide the tours during our Club’s construction.
Then, when the club opened, I was responsible for all members’ services, receptions, ambassadors, follow-up complaints, disciplinary committee cases, customer service trainings for my staff, and I led the communication and graphic design department.
I recently obtained several certifications in: Etiquette and Protocol for Food and Beverage Service, as a Customer Service Executive, Hospitality Service, and Pedagogical Mediation to teach and share my learnings with my team.
What I like the most about my job is that every day is different, you go from a happy member to an upset member over a plate of food, a misbehaving teenager, a complaint about a sports amenity and everything must be resolved with the same strategy and approach: good people skills, empathy, self-confidence, and a good judgment to make our members experience memorable and their trip home a success.
Q: What do you do in your daily job or life to inspire other minorities to get them interested in the club and customer service as a career?
A: Have a positive attitude, give a sincere smile, listen carefully to everyone’s opinion, support, respect and help whenever necessary. Be creative and look for effective solutions, be fair and take responsibility for my entire team. Always work hard to exceed the expectations of our members – is my best reward.