How A Natural-Born Leader Came to Manage Not One Hotel, But Two
Education and Careers Marsha Ray worked her way up the hospitality ladder to establish herself as a full-blown leader.
How did you first get your start in the industry?
Growing up in Toronto, I worked at a lakeside resort every summer as a dishwasher. I then moved on to restaurant server, and finished her experience at the resort as a restaurant supervisor – all while attending high school and college. After school, I worked at a ski resort in British Columbia as a banquet server, then banquet captain, and finished as a banquet manager. Opportunities opened up with the same company in Vancouver, Canada where I became a restaurant manager, front office manager, and food and beverage director.
These positions led me to an opportunity as the director of operations with Westin, and then hotel manager with Sheraton. Marsha then joined Interstate Hotels & Resorts as general manager at the Westin Toronto Airport, before moving onto my current role as general manager of both the Philadelphia 201 Hotel and the Renaissance Philadelphia Airport Hotel.
Now, as a general manager of the Philadelphia 201 Hotel and Renaissance Philadelphia Airport Hotel, I oversee the guest and associate experience for both properties.
What do you attribute to your successful career in the hospitality industry?
I attributes my career success to moving around a lot, and learning different aspects of the business while adapting my leadership style depending on the team I'm overseeing.
For a man or women just starting out in the hospitality industry, what advice would you provide them?
I advise those looking to move up in the business to become the “go to” person at the office – focusing on results, setting goals, and always delivering exceptional results.