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Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.

Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.

Yvonne Brady, HR Manager
Tourism & Hospitality

Yvonne Brady, HR Manager

Yvonne Brady is the Area HR Manager in the Hilton Hotel in Dublin. To date she has qualified as a Chef, Diet Chef and Pastry Chef. She continued her studies while working and completed a certificate, followed by a degree in Hotel & Catering Management.  She then completed a Diploma in Human Resources Management and is currently doing a Diploma in Employment Law. She has been with Hilton now for over 7 years and has been promoted 3 times.

Ask me your
first question!

What were the main 'career decision' milestones in your life so far?

Milestones for me (so far) have included career changes from Chef to Manager & from Manager to HR Manager. Thats the best thing about a career in hospitality. It offers the flexibility to change your job several times, while remaining in the same exciting industry.

Who are the people who most influenced your career direction?

I always wanted to work in hospitality. My first job was unpaid work experience as a Commis Chef in a hotel at the age of 16. I absolutely loved the buzz & excitement of the kitchen and haven't looked back since.

How did you go about getting your current job?

My current job is the Area HR Manager in the Hilton Hotel in Dublin.  I've been with Hilton now for over 7 years and have been promoted 3 times.  I've also had the opportunity to open 2 new hotels which was a fantastic opportunity . The recruitment process at Hilton is fairly rigorous; I had to attend several behavioural interviews, provide references and complete psychometric assessments. I was informed within a week that I had been successful.

Describe a typical day?

I use this question too when I'm interviewing Candidates!  Thankfully in my job there is no such thing as a typical day but I do try to organise my day as follows... I'm up at 6am as I swim each day and am at my desk by 8am.

I check emails & voicemails & do a quick walkabout of whichever hotel I am working in. Then I usually have interviews and meetings to attend, promoting training & development and dealing with IR issues. 

In HR there's lots of fun activities such as employee social events and co-ordinating charity fundraising events. However my schedule has to be flexible, as I like to be available to my employees as much as possible - they are my customers

What are the main tasks and responsibilities?

HR is divided into three main areas: Recruitment & Selection,  Training & Development and Employee Relations

What are the main challenges?

Changes in employement legislation.  Ensuring all processes are best practice.

What's cool?

Luckily I get to stay in fabulous hotels & visit exciting destinations with my job.

What's not so cool?

There are difficult aspects of the job. Dealing with grievences, disciplinaries is never pleasant and I have had to fire & make people redundant in the past. In those situations I try to be fair & objective and make the process as painless as possible for the employee concerned.

What particular skills do you bring to your workplace?

I believe having an operations background gives you more credibility among your colleagues. Other required qualities include flexibility, organisation, creativity, energy, motivation, confidence & a big personality!

What subjects did you take in school and how have these influenced your career path?

In school I took additional subjects in my inter & leaving certificates to maximise my points. Kept my options open with a mixture of science, language & financial subjects.

What is your education to date?

I am the eternal student... I've been in college since I left school.  To date I've qualified as a Chef, Diet Chef & Pastry Chef. I continued my studies on a part-time basis while working & completed a certificate, followed by my degree in Hotel & Catering Management.  Then I completed my Diploma in Human Resources Management and I'm currently doing a Diploma in Employment Law

What aspects of your education have proven most important for your job?

I think it's important to gain a balance of practical work experience combined with academic qualifications.  For my current role it is really important that I keep up with changes in employment law

What personal qualities do you have that helps you in your career?

I'm quite driven, have tons of energy & love to be busy. Am curious & interested in people. Also worked my way up in operations so have industry knowledge.

What is your dream job?

I'm doing it..  I firmly believe if you find a job you love - you'll never work a day in your life!

Does your job allow you to have a lifestyle you are happy with?

I've recently been promoted to Area HR Manager Hilton Dublin so along with my team I am responsible for the HR function for 3 busy Hilton Hotels. However I work a 39 hour week & have evenings & weekends off!  Hilton has a policy to promote from within so there are lots of opportunities. We also have a "Hilton Club" for employees, which allows us to stay in Hilton hotels all over the world at discounted rates.

What advice would you give to someone considering this job?

I would strongly recommend a career in HR specifically in hospitality. It is a flexible career with lots of options and opportunities to travel. A qualification in HRM is a good start and gaining work experience is really important. 

What are the three most important personal characteristics required for the job?

Energy,  Ability to multi-task,  Objectivity

What is your pet hate at work?

A disorganised desk

What is your star sign?

Virgo - the perfectionist!

Have you undertaken, or do you plan to undertake any further training as part of your job?

I'm very lucky because Hilton has an on-line university offering over 500 courses in all areas of hospitality.  Continuous personal development is crucial & my company is very focused on learning

What kinds of work experience would provide a good background for this position?

I am a huge fan of work experience.

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