Career file: Neil Porter

first_img Comments are closed. Thismonth Neil Porter, group training manager for Choice Hotels Europe, UK andIreland, age 40, explains the challenges of his new jobHowlong have you been in this job?  Since 1 July 2000.Howlong have you been with your company?Since 1 July 2000!Whatdoes your role involve? Designing and running courses, overseeing graduate trainees, assisting inIIP and managing our NVQ programme.What’sthe best thing about your job? The people – all bright, bubbly and keen to learn, hard working andcommitted to the company and our guests.What’sthe worst thing? The travel and the early start, and time away from my home in Warwickshire.Whatis your current major project or strategic push?To improve the quality of service and develop revenues through training ourmanagement to become more effective. We are piloting a training programmecalled “Learning and Development – the Line Manager’s Role”.Preferredterminology?Learning and development, because the days of sitting in the classroom areon the way out and this implies that people must be responsible for themselvesthrough ideas like Individual Learning Accounts.Favouritebuzzword?E-Learning – the new way for training delivery.Mostloathed buzzwords?Streaming. I don’t know what it means, but it carries a tone of schooldays.    Areyou good at self-development?I’m getting better – after a year of doing none, I have been on fivecourses in three months.Whatself-development have you done in the past six months?Time management (again), assertive communications, first aid, health andsafety and the new version of the Investors In People standard.Wheredo you want to be in five years’ time?Taking over from my boss when he takes well-deserved retirement.Whatwas the most useful course you ever went on or learning experience you everhad?The Coverdale Organisation’s Teamwork for Professionals course. Saville andHoldsworth’s occupational testing and occupational personality questionnaires.Whatwas the worst course you ever went on?Hatfield Jeffries, HJ5 (training in using their customer servicerecruitment questionnaires). Although it wasn’t a bad course, it was a skill Ithat have never needed to use.Whatdid you want to do for a living when you were at school? Run a hotel, be a market gardener or a teacher.Whatwas your first job?Basement porter at the age of 16, at the Dudley Hotel, Hove.Whatwas the best career decision you ever made?To join what was then Trusthouse Forte as a graduate trainee in 1982.Whatwas the worst career decision you ever made?Going to join Al Homaizi International Management Company in Kuwait astraining manager in 1996 – not so much the lack of women and alcohol, but thelack of bacon!Whichof your qualifications do you most value and why?The occupational personality questionnaire (Saville and Holdsworth) – itgives me the opportunity to discuss personality and motive, which fascinatesme.Howmany minutes is it since someone senior in your organisation said, “People areour greatest assets”?About five – and they mean it. My boss abolished the word “staff” longbefore Asda decided to.Evaluation– Holy Grail or impossible dream?Holy Grail – we would not have achieved IIP in so many hotels without it.Howdo you think your job will have changed in five years’ time?More e-learning, more working in a virtual office and fewer of us doingmore electronically.Whatdo you think the core skills for your job will be in the future? Flexibility, facilitation, familiarity with IT and multi-media design anddelivery.Whatadvice would you give to someone starting out in training and development?Learn the business needs, be flexible, network, pick brains and never letyourself get stale.Howdo you network?Through the Hotel Training Group and by attending CIPD/HCIMA meetings, andmy legendary barbecues.Ifyou could have any job in the world, what would it be?My older brother’s – he was chief operating officer of an Anglo-Americaninsurance company until he retired (at 50). He now lives on his investments.Doyou take your work home with you?Yes, I work there one day a week at least – I also take my home on theroad.Whatis your motto?Live a little, learn a little.Describeyour management style in three words or less. Friendly, fair, firm.Howwould you like to be remembered by colleagues? The boy never lacked commitment. Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos. Career file: Neil PorterOn 1 Sep 2000 in Personnel Todaylast_img


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