How I Overcame Imposter Syndrome After Six Months at a Hotel
When I was 18, I left my job at Dunkin’ Donuts and began working as a front desk agent for a Hampton Inn and Suites. This was an intimidating step for me. Not only did I have hardly any relevant work experience, but I was also younger than the rest of the staff.
The imposter syndrome felt more real than it ever had. I didn’t let that get in my way.
To show my managers that I was eager to learn, I asked questions about how to handle various guest situations and which resources I could use to find information. They saw how much I cared about getting things right, which helped to build a foundation of trust.
I Took Initiative and Helped in Other Departments
Once I was familiar with my own department, I offered to help other departments. The hotel decided to bring breakfast back after a year without it, due to Covid regulations. I volunteered to help with the transition, and worked with the breakfast crew when I was not at the front desk.
As wedding season came into full bloom, the housekeeping team became overwhelmed with work. There was a lot of pressure to get rooms cleaned and inspected early. I thought it would be helpful to have another person qualified to inspect rooms, so I told my manager I wanted to learn. She immediately scheduled a time for the housekeeping manager to train me, and I was trained later that week.
I Challenged Myself by Taking On more Responsibility
I offered to take on extra work if my managers seemed to be busy, such as ordering breakfast supplies, processing invoices, and organizing deposits. I also worked with the sales team, finding leads for them by researching incoming guests and asking guests about their businesses.
In my fourth month at the hotel, a girl who worked evening shifts left. I decided to take her place. After a few days of training, I was managing evenings on my own. Later, I was also put in charge of training a newly-hired desk agent.
How I Grew and How You Can Too!
After six months, I decided to leave the hotel. I had learned more than I thought possible in that short amount of time. I took initiative by asking questions and offering to help departments other than my own. In becoming an evening supervisor, I learned how to deal with a great amount of responsibility. I became confident in my ability to interact with people and deal with adult situations.
In the beginning, I felt like an imposter, but I realized I was just another person who had a lot to learn. If you ever feel the same way I did, just remember that the people at the top were once where you are. The way to build confidence and get where they are is by building your knowledge base. Ask questions and offer to help wherever you can.
My time at the hotel was short, but the lessons I learned will stick with me for the rest of my life.