Starboard Hotels launches national training programme in Burnley

By Lancashire Business View

08 Mar 2018

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Starboard Hotels has selected the Holiday Inn Express in Burnley for its national assessment centre as it rolls out a UK-wide training initiative.

Employees from across the chain's 20 hotels journeyed to Lancashire to undertake SHAPE, the Starboard Hotels Accelerator Programme, aimed at developing their future careers.

The Burnley hotel was selected as the assessment centre for the year-long course as it offers all the key faculties required to host the SHAPE project, including first-class conference facilities and excellent transport links for the delegates travelling from around the country.

Highly regarded hospitality industry professional Robert Crook, who was born in Lancashire and studied at Nelson and Colne College, was the special guest at the launch event, along with Dr Alan Gregory, doctor of literature who will be involved in mentoring some of the 13 candidates who hail from across the country including Gatwick, Epping, Birmingham, Plymouth and Leeds.

During the first two days, the course began with the ‘Insite’ personality profiling module, teaching the candidates about their style, how they communicate and learn. They were also introduced to their mentors, senior managers from Starboard and agreed how they will work together over the coming year.

The scheme was developed by Lancashire businesswoman Kerian Barnes, director of operations at Starboard Hotels, one of the UK's fastest growing hotel owner/operators with a portfolio that includes brands such as IHG (Intercontinental Hotel Group), Wyndham hotels, Ibis Hotels and Best Western.

Kerian started out as a part-time worker aged 15 in a Lancashire hotel and now sits on the board of Starboard Hotels running operations for a growing, highly valuable hotel portfolio.

She said: "We are investing in excess of £30,000 on the programme, excluding the support from suppliers, many of them from the Lancashire region. Working in partnership they have a vested interest , sharing their knowledge, driving best practice, building relationships, share in our quest to keep great people within our business.

"If we can encourage and motivate these young Starboard team players to have a voice in the development of the company they will bring their innovation and style to the wider benefit of the group. It also prepares them for working across the brands.”

The candidates, all of whom already work in various roles for Starboard Hotels, will go on to complete a series of set modules during the next 12 months, including learning how the hospitality supply chain works by shadowing suppliers such as food and beverage producers and furnishing suppliers. They will also 'shadow' marketing and sales managers and the media communications team and other vital support functions. Encouraging people to work in the hospitality industry and to see it as a long term career has never been more important. There are 4.5 million workers employed across hospitality and tourism as a whole, and it is the fourth largest industry in the UK contributing 10 per cent of GDP.

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