The annual Catey awards, organised by the Caterer and Hotelkeeper Magazine, considered the ‘Oscars’ of the hospitality industry, took place on Friday 12th October 2018 at the Park Plaza, London, and celebrates the individuals, teams and businesses shaping our industry.
We are delighted to have won the ‘Front of House Team of the Year’ for a private site at the Cateys 2018, showcasing our team at Omnicom in London. As a specialist provider of exceptional guest services, we manage the reception, meeting room services and helpdesk across two busy buildings and home to over 3,800 employees.
Read why the judges were so impressed with our entry and how the caterer reported the win.
Our client, Paul Tilley, Senior Facilities Manager at Omnicom Europe, joined us at the ceremony to pick up the award, and afterwards said, “I am very proud of my Rapport team, as they thoroughly deserve this recognition. Each of them is professional, has high energy and perfectly represents the Omnicom ‘vibe’ to our clients, guests and employees. Knowing they’re always in perfect control means I never worry about anything and can concentrate on other priorities”.
Neringa Samoskaite, Assistant Guest Services Manager for Rapport at Omnicom was understandably rather excited when we caught up with her and she added, “I am incredibly proud right now, as I know how much planning, training and communication it all takes to provide a unique guest experience. Great work, great team and great friends”!
Greg Mace, Managing Director of Rapport Guest Services, was also at the Park Plaza on Friday and commented: “Rapport’s ethos is based on providing an exceptional, personalised service. Our Ambassadors bring to life our core values and are testament to the success of Rapport. It’s always great when they get this wider recognition for the lengths they go to and we’re very proud of them.”
Become an inspirational and highly effective leader with Rapport
Our training academy is the major way that we invest in everyone who works for Rapport, by providing them with personal and professional development and many opportunities to gain extra qualifications.
With a specific focus on our supervisors and team leaders in 2016, we launched a bespoke development programme called ‘Lead the Way’. It is designed to develop their skills and includes helpful tools that can be embedded immediately into their management role to enhance their own and their teams’ performance.
Apply what is learnt right away in the workplace
This ’just-in-time’ approach to training and development ensures that all attendees get the most from the experience because they work on ‘real life’ scenarios within the programme. Their performance is continuously evaluated and then they apply what they have learnt during the training in their workplace right away.
Taking the first step on the Lead the Way programme
We want people to become inspirational leaders of the future.
We created this bespoke programme to develop the distinct competencies, skills and behaviours required for leaders within the Rapport business but can be applied in any leadership or management position.
The programme content is perfectly aligned with Rapport’s vision, values and team objectives. Because we know that developing skills that truly engage and inspire teams enhances their performance and ensures that our clients receive the highest standards of service.
Navigating the eleven modules over four months
With eleven modules spread over four months, attendees meet every two weeks to share best practice, discuss challenging scenarios and take part in activities, all aimed at developing team-leading soft skills.
A past graduate of the programme is matched up with each attendee to act as a ‘buddy’ to mentor and challenge their progress. Working together is key to exceptional team performance at Rapport and everyone collaborates on projects. This means the experience in the programme is directly relevant to their working environment.
Closely aligned to every individuals’ goals
Each course module is closely aligned to every individuals’ Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), their goals and also support our clients’ contractual expectations. Effective leadership requires a broad range of skills, all of which are covered in the bespoke course, with different activities and challenges.
From active listening and communication skills to relationship building and the art of influencing. Public speaking and how to create a positive working environment all lead to the final module, ‘Steps to Success’.
The programme timing helps to make a lasting impact
Previous graduate, Andreas Zenkovitch shares his experience of the programme, “I was more of a doer than a planner and I developed some great writing tools and learnt how to identify and measure ‘smart objectives’. It was a challenging course but it came at the right time for me as I’ve been promoted twice since successfully completing it.”
By far the biggest challenge is the final presentation that each attendee creates about their own unique journey, the impact it has had on their leadership style and the next steps in their career development. Each person presents their story to fellow group members, managers, clients and even our inspirational Managing Director, Greg Mace.
Andreas recalls his apprehension prior to that big day, “Fortunately the programme really helped me with the preparation process and by utilising the tools it went really well in the end. I was a buddy on the next programme and able to give lots of tips for the final presentation.”
Celebrating success every November
It’s an integral part of the Rapport culture to recognise and reward our people for going the extra mile and on completing the course, so all graduates are invited to attend the annual Rapport Graduation Ceremony each November.
Greg Mace awards certificates and many of our clients support our graduates by also attending.
Since the initial launch of the programme, our people have achieved outstanding results. Previous graduate, Loredana Ganea, joined on her third week into a new frontline position and first leadership role. The timing was perfect for Lori who says, “Being new to leadership, the programme gave me the tools to help me develop my team and I was able to immediately implement what I learnt into my daily work.’’
Attendees are more likely to be promoted to a new role
Within three months and still on the programme, Lori was promoted to a Senior Guest Services Coordinator at another Rapport client. Asked about some key learnings that helped her career progression, Lori said, “A really important element for me was learning how to adapt the same message to different people and sharing this with my team. I’ve been able to improve operations and create a positive work environment by helping my team communicate with each other better.”
Join this inspirational programme and take your career to the next level
This programme equips people in supervisory roles to manage their teams more effectively, enabling them to provide the highest level of award winning service in our industry. It also creates a talent pipeline for the most accomplished to become Rapport’s Inspirational Leaders of the future.
As announced by The Caterer and Hotelkeeper and PurpleCubed at the special annual HR Forum event held on Tuesday, 24 April 2018 at the prestigious Hilton Park Lane.
The reasons why the company has achieved this are clear.
Working with a team that respects each other is the priority rated highest by employees and 90% of those surveyed at Rapport agreed that this is true of their workplace.
In the last year, Rapport has continued to invest in their people by showing that it takes mental health seriously. The company introduced a wellbeing ambassador to raise awareness for this serious issue and they have encouraged colleagues to have open conversations.
The company demonstrates a strong commitment to career development for all, regardless of their position, by introducing a dedicated business coach in 2016 followed by leadership coaching masterclasses. 90% of last year’s internal development programme graduates have already been promoted and on their way to developing a strong career.
To ensure that every guest experience is unique, the Rapport Academy training programme provides all employees with the tools to provide an outstanding level of service with courses in diversity, disability, protocol awareness and even sign language.
No wonder over 85% of employees state they are very proud to work for Rapport.
Greg Mace, Managing Director of Rapport Guest Services says “We were really thrilled to be recognised once again as one of the Top 30 Best Places to Work in Hospitality. This is Rapport’s 5th year of recognition and each year we take on board the feedback from our team and implement changes so that we can continue to make Rapport an even better place to work. To have our employees feeling so proud to work for us not only helps with staff retention but also means our team recommend their great friends to join us.”
We are always looking for exceptional people to join us.
Pictured left to right from Rapport are Gary Acheson, Head of HR and Learning, Greg Mace, Managing Director and Jane Sunley, Founder & Chairman, Purple Cubed
Jo Harley, Managing Director of Purple Cubed adds:
”As one of only three organisations to be featured in the Top 30 Best Places to Work in Hospitality for five consecutive years it’s obvious that Greg and the team are placing their people strategy firmly at the top of the business agenda. It’s encouraging to see a company so dedicated to attracting, developing and retaining talented people and, as the survey outcomes highlight, Rapport is clearly a great place to work and an employer of choice for anyone considering a career in our industry”
Championing International Receptionists’ Day
Rapport, Compass Group UK & Ireland’s guest services business, is proudly championing International Receptionists’ Day which is celebrated on the second Wednesday in May each year and in 2018 falls on Wednesday 9th May.
With more and more countries around the world celebrating Receptionists’ Day, a new website has been unveiled reflecting the international nature of this annual event – www.internationalreceptionistsday.com
Multi award-winning guest services provider, Rapport is pleased to continue as lead sponsor and is organising a range of activities and initiatives open to all. International Receptionists’ Day is also supported by the AICR, which is an association of Front of House managers of five-star hotels around the world.
Receptionists’ Day was first launched in 1991 in the US to celebrate the role of professional receptionists. The purpose of International Receptionists’ Day is to:
- Recognise the importance of the receptionist’s role. Usually the first person a guest or client meets when they visit a company or hotel – the receptionist creates that all important first impression and is integral to the guest experience.
- Promote pride and professionalism amongst receptionists for the essential role they hold within an organisation.
- Give receptionists an opportunity to share stories and link up with other colleagues. Each year the initiative grows and is celebrated by companies across the globe.
Various initiatives will be hosted with some great prizes on offer. These include ‘Reception Heroes’, where employees share a story of how their Receptionist colleague has done something exceptional during the course of their work. In addition, there will be a caption competition and other ways to get involved.
At Rapport, all the Directors and head office managers will be embracing going ‘back to the front’, working as receptionists for the day alongside reception teams across the UK and Ireland, USA and Hong Kong.
Greg Mace, Managing Director of Rapport said: “International Receptionists’ Day is the perfect way to celebrate the work of dedicated receptionists all over the world and we’re delighted to be leading the way. Supporting this initiative is an opportunity for us to celebrate the great work receptionists do and to raise their profile within our operations. We hope that every single receptionist who takes part will feel proud – they are truly exceptional people.”
For more information visit – www.rapportservice.com
Rapport celebrated the achievements and success of all of its WOW! Award winners over the past twelve months at a special annual event held on Monday, 23rd April 2018.
The WOW! Awards is the only independent national award provider that recognises excellent customer service based solely on guests’ and colleagues’ nominations.
Each month, nominations are read and adjudicated by the independent WOW! Awards team and winners are presented with a framed certificate and a bottle of champagne at a bi-monthly event. Over the past twelve months, individuals and teams at Rapport have won an amazing 146 WOW! Awards.
The WOW! Awards winners’ annual event was hosted at one of Rapport’s client sites in the City of London with over 140 people from across Rapport’s UK business attending, including Derek Williams, CEO, The WOW! Awards and Greg Mace, Managing Director, Rapport.
Greg commented “Rapport’s ethos is based on providing an exceptional personalised service. What’s great about The WOW! Awards is that the nominees are put forward by clients, guests and our teams who have witnessed first-hand the high quality services our people deliver. Our Ambassadors bring to life our core values and are testament to the success of Rapport, so it’s always great when we acknowledge the lengths they go to.”
Derek Williams commented: “The WOW! Awards give people an independent assessment against the best customer service organisations in the UK, enabling us to shine a spotlight on those who go the extra mile. Rapport’s annual event demonstrates the consistently high level of work that its Ambassadors provide. Outstanding guest services is key to the success of Rapport and these awards acknowledge their achievements.”
The stories and pictures relating to the WOW! Award winners were displayed around the room so that all the Rapport ambassadors attending could highlight their story to their clients and read about the achievements of their peers. Attendees were also given the opportunity to vote on their favourite WOW! Award from 12 shortlisted winning stories and one overall winner was selected by the attendees. This year’s winner was Elena Horatau, a Receptionist at BMO, who won dinner for two at Jason Atherton’s Michelin starred City Social restaurant.
The winners also had great fun locating their own face on a special ‘Where’s Wowie’ interactive wall which had been created specifically for this celebration.
A map of London on the interactive wall which depicted all the WOW! Award winners
Pictured left to right; Greg, Mace, MD Rapport
Pictured left to right; Elena Horatau Derek Williams, CEO, The WOW! Awards