How did you find your start in the industry and how did you arrive at your current position?
Initially I was drawn to the hospitality industry specifically towards hotels. I was studying accounting and had hoped to get a finance job in a hotel chain that could open up the possibilities to work abroad. To get experience in the industry I applied for a Gaming Attendant role at Parramatta Leagues Club, which I was successful in. To this day I still have fond memories of comradery amongst the staff from entry level to senior management.
The more training I underwent the more avenues presented with the option to pursue a career within this industry. It was the moment I decided this would be my future that doors started to open for me. I underwent a quick succession from gaming attendant to loyalty host and then safe operator. I was presented with the opportunity to look at some small Gaming Admin tasks and quickly found a passion for Gaming. It was from here I looked to further my progression and find a role in my new found passion. I bid Parramatta Leagues Club farewell and stepped into a Gaming Analyst role at Revesby Workers’ Club.
At that point in my career I could not have asked for a better place to land. I had an experienced team I work with and a supportive manager who encouraged me and helped build me into the person I am today. Nine years later and I am still at Revesby and hold the title of Gaming and Loyalty Coordinator. I have been fortunate enough to go through a system change, new floor rebuild, numerous club expansions and renovations and being given the task of creating and managing our own host team. I am fortunate to work in a collaborative team where we are always working to try and improve the business.
What excites you most about working in the gaming and/or hospitality industry?
One thing that has continuously excited me in my career has been the opportunities that are available in the industry. Whether it is a new industry specific course that has been created, study tours or tertiary education, I think we do a great job in the industry at trying to keep staff involved and expanding their thinking.
I love that every day is different. I have learnt in this industry you never stop learning and something new will always surprise you as we need to acclimatise to changes quickly. It’s this fast pace of adapting that caters to my love of being able to action something, whether it is a machine installation, moves or a new promotion. I really enjoy making a change, seeing the impact it has on our floor and how it is received with our members.
I am also excited to think where we will be in ten and twenty years’ time, with technology evolving so fast, it will change the experience for our customers and change our demographics also as we start to capture younger generations.
What advice would you give your younger self, starting out in the gaming and/or hospitality Industry?
There are so many pathways available in this industry for you to grow and have the career you always envisioned for yourself. It’s important to make the most of all training opportunities, whether they’ve been presented to you as an option or you’ve actively sought training and development.
Networking is such a powerful tool and still completely relevant in this day and age. Push yourself to go beyond a LinkedIn request and get out there and connect with people in your industry. Collectively there’s so much information from us all to share and learn from one another.
Lastly, put the pen down in meetings and be present by actively having a voice. If you see there is something that could be changed for the better and you have a solution, don’t be afraid to share it.
Can you name a person who has had a tremendous impact on you as a leader? Maybe someone who has been a mentor to you? Why and how did this person impact your life?
I have been lucky enough to have a few people in my life that have impacted me. My Managers early on took me under their wing, supporting and encouraging me to make a career in the industry. They shared with me their goals and ambitions and how they got to where they were, which absolutely fuelled me with excitement. This was fundamental for me in creating an idea of what I wanted and how I could achieve it.
One noteworthy Gaming Manager at Parramatta Leagues Club was Dominic Monti who in the very beginning planted a seed to follow a path in Gaming. He had a great impact for me in a short time and was great to go to for advice for my career. He was fantastic in helping me make the best decision at that point in time and I really respect and admire his willingness to help people.
Most recently I have been lucky enough to have Allison Gibbons, Executive Manager, Gaming at Revesby Workers’ Club as my Manager and Mentor. Throughout my time at Revesby I could not have asked for a better person to have in that position. Allison has been a mentor to me and given me encouragement and freedom to build my skills as a leader and grow my Gaming knowledge which has been fantastic. It’s been incredibly rewarding to have a great female industry leader to have as my mentor.
These people have all made me a better person, leader and worker and I am beyond grateful to all of them.
Who or what inspire you and why?
New ideas and reviewing what we can change to make our organisation better greatly inspires me. I find that this comes through seeking different ways we can improve our business for both staff and members by creating an impact through positive experiences and interactions with the business. Testing different staff development training, promotional activities, ideas and concepts to engage existing customers and try to garner new customers from the community is always the ultimate goal.
Continuously training and studying in any form whether it is keynote events, onsite training, podcasts, literature, audio books or external training facilitators opens my world of possibilities and is another form of inspiration. It is because of the value that I receive from always empowering myself with knowledge that I am a big believer in educating staff. I truly believe training is the easiest way to increase the productivity and results from staff, while empowering them with the tools to make decisions.