Home Interview Professional Icon: Zannatul Ferdaous

Professional Icon: Zannatul Ferdaous

Ms. Zannatul Ferdaous is a seasoned hospitality professional from Daudpur, Dinajpur, currently pursuing an Executive MBA in Management from the University of Dhaka. With a BBA in Marketing and an MPHRM, she has been an integral part of Pan Pacific Sonargaon Dhaka since 2008, rising to the role of Coordinator in the People & Culture Department. Ms. Zannatul’s leadership focuses on collaboration, empathy, and continuous improvement, contributing to successful employee well-being programs. She is instrumental in implementing customer-centric initiatives, such as the Brand Ambassador program, enhancing guest experiences and employee skills. Ms. Zannatul is a trailblazer in the service industry, embodying leadership, dedication, and a passion for exceptional experiences.

Let’s learn about her journey.

This is Zannatul Ferdaous. I came from a very small but beautiful village named Daudpur, located in the north part of Country, Dinajpur. I have completed my schooling there. Then I have done all my higher studies in Dhaka. I have completed BBA in Marketing then did Master’s of Professional Human Resource Management (MPHRM) from the Iconic University of Dhaka. And currently I am pursuing my Executive MBA in Management from the same University of Dhaka (last Semester) as well.

In Profession, it is a quiet long. I am working at Pan Pacific Sonargaon Dhaka since 2008, when I was only Hon’s First Year First Semester Student. To support my own study cost I was looking for a part time job. And I was lucky enough to get a small role in this Iconic Hotel. As in the service Industry the shifting working hours available so student can easily do this job without any difficulties of Study. At first, I have joined at Front Office Department. And now I am working as a Coordinator of People & Culture Department.

As a people & Culture Coordinator, my role centers around fostering a positive and inclusive workplace culture within the organization. ON a day to day basis, I manage various responsibilities to support the development and well-being of our employees. Overall my focus on creating a workplace that nurtures professional growth, values diversity and aligns with the organizational Mission, Vision and Values.

My Key responsibilities are, not limited to-

  • Oversee the recruitment process, including creating job descriptions, posting job vacancies, sorting resume and coordinating test & interviews.
  • Facilitate the onboarding process for new employees, ensuring they are introduced to the Hotel’s Policies, Procedures & Culture.
  • Coordinate Orientation Session to help new hires acclimate to their roles and the work environment.
  • Act as a point of contact for employee concerns or issues and work towards resolving conflicts.
  • Promote positive employee relations through effective communication and engagement initiatives.
  • Implement ongoing professional development initiatives to enhance employee skills & performance. Administer performance appraisal processes and provide support to managers in conducting performance review.
  • Stay updated on employment laws and regulations to ensure the Hotel policies and practices comply with the legal requirements.
  • Assist in developing and updating HR policies & procedures.
  • Plan & Organize employee events, team building activities and recognition program to boost morale.
  • Foster a positive and inclusive workplace culture
  • Maintain accurate employee records & documentation
  • Assist manager to process payroll, managing benefits and maintaining HR Database.
  • Mediate and resolve interpersonal conflict or disputes within the team.
  • Communicate effectively with employees at all levels to ensure a transparent and open communication channel.
  • Provide & distribute relevant HR information & updates.

In my role as a People & Culture coordinator, my leadership style is characterized by blend of collaboration, empathy and a commitment to continuous improvement. I prioritize open communication channels, encouraging team members to share ideas and concerns freely. By fostering a culture of inclusivity and recognize the unique contributions of each team member, I aim to create positive work environment. An example of this positive impact of this leadership style is successful implementation of employee well-being program like- Associates Quarterly Recognition Program (SWARNALI), Associates’ Family Gathering, GM’S Roundtable, Days celebration of various Departments like Front Office Day, Chef’s Day, IT Day, Engineering Week etc. By actively involving team members in the design and execution of initiatives, we saw increased employee morale, reduced turnover rate, reduce conflict & team cohesion, increase overall job satisfaction which turns to employee performance.

The People & Culture Team maintains adaptability and innovation by staying attuned to Industry Trends, proactively seeking feedback from employees and implementing forward thinking initiatives. One successful example is the integration of advanced people training program for designated departments called Service Culture. This initiative allows employees from different Departments like Front Office, Housekeeping, Food & Beverage, Sales & Marketing, Engineering, Security, Finance to learn new skills which essential to adapt for Modern Era. And it improves the employee performance also which shown in EGCC report, Trust You Score. And by encompassing various learning methods the employees will be able to adopt Industry changes, become forward thinking mindset. In the long run, the Hotel gains a competitive edge by having a skilled and adaptable workforce that can deliver exceptional guest experiences in line with the organizational standards.

The People & Culture team prioritizes a customer – centric approach through a multifaceted strategy encompassing Employee Training, Personalized Guests Experiences & also with a commitment to continuous improvement.

An exemplary success story lies in the implementation of a “Brand Ambassador” Program. And another one is Designated Trainers (DT) Program. In the Brand Ambassador Program, select employees across various departments and go through specialized training in customer service excellence. The ambassadors are empowered to anticipate guest needs, address concerns proactively and create personalized experiences. In one instance, Brand Ambassador identified a guest celebrating his/her Birthday and wishing the guest with Cake, wishing notes, gift packs etc. The surprised & delighted guest not only extend the stay but also become loyal guest cause for the personalized care. We offer our service to the guest like second home.

On the other hand, the DT from all Departments are not only responsible to find out learning needs and improving their skills but also look after the overall employee well-being which leads to the achieve Organizational goal.

Yes! Pan Pacific Sonargaon Dhaka is one of the Oldest, most gorgeous and Iconic Hotel in Bangladesh. Ensuring excellent guests services over the long term involves the implementation of comprehensive Policies & Strategies that prioritize guests Satisfaction & loyalty.

Firstly, the Hotel establish and enforces meticulous service standards, encompassing everything from Reservation to Check out. These standards are ingrained in the Training Programs for all employees, ensuring a consistent and gracious hospitality. To gather continuous feedback & insights, the hotel employs guest satisfaction survey, online reviews and direct communication channels. This valuable information helped to analyze necessary improvements and implemented promptly.

Moreover, the Hotel invests in advanced Learning process like Effective Communication Skills, Learning Experience Platform (LXP) which teach our employees to anticipate Guests preferences & enhance overall service efficiency.

On the other hand, Recognizing the significance of employee satisfaction in delivering exceptional guest services, our organization prioritizes employee well-being through various recognition program like-   Nominee of the Month, Best Associate of the Month & Year, Star Card, Appreciation Letter, Monetary benefit as well as a positive work environment.

The combination of all these policies & strategies Pan Pacific Sonargaon Dhaka create a sustainable framework for delivering excellent Guests Services over the long term, fostering guest loyalty and positive word of mouth that continues to the hotel’s overall success.Top of Form

Fostering collaboration and communication with my team to ensure the seamless flow of information & ideas I do follow some activities. Like- Conduct regular team meeting to discuss ongoing projects, share updates and address challenges. We encourage open discussion and participation from all team members. We encourage collaboration also with different departments which promotes a broader understanding of the Hotel’s operations and challenges.

Then promote an open door policy to encourage communication between team members and leadership. Also facilitate one-to-one meeting to address individual concerns. Organize various team building events, workshops which improve effective communication skills, conflict resolutions. Last but not the least celebrate team achievements like acknowledge and celebrate team success whether big or small and also birthday, become new parents, newly married, Merit Recognition for their children etc. These all reinforces a positive team culture and fosters Teamwork, Creativity & Productivity within the team and contributing the overall success of the Organization.  

For Future Candidates aspiring to pursue a career in the service-oriented industry, there are some key points need to achieve like:

  • Effective Communication is crucial for Service Industry. Need to focus on both verbal & written communications.
  • Should focus on needs & satisfaction of Customers. So A Customer Centric mindset is essential.
  • Need Positive Attitude. Cause in the service industry we often involve handling challenging situations. As we serve guests from all over the world, so to manage different culture, different mindset people; positive attitude is obvious.

Also needed interpersonal skills, problem solving abilities, flexibility & adaptability, relevant education & training, teamwork capabilities, empathy and should be patient & persistent. Cause service industry is dynamic and situations can change rapidly as we deal with human. Our job is to serve people & their preferences.

There is a saying that Hotel job is not suitable for woman. I would say this job is more safe and suitable for woman from any other job. We do follow the SOP’s and Law of the Land strictly. So Woman get all types of facilities with good remuneration. And the working environment & culture practices is very friendly in the Hotel Industry.

The most outstanding achievement of your life as of now:
Best Associate of the Year 2022. 2. Doing double Master’s from the Iconic University of Dhaka.

The greatest philosopher in your view:
Our Prophet.

Your Icon:
1. My Parents 2. My current Supervisor, Leader & Mentor – Md. Mahbubul Wahid (they support me always in all my odds & encourage me to stand on my own feet.

Name the most influential books you have read:
The Holy Quaran, The Diary of a Young Girl, War & Peace, Anna Karenina, The Alchemist, Eleven Minutes, Satkahon, Aparajito, IKIGAI etc.

Your greatest fear:
Fear of Time (Want to get enough time to make a Beautiful world for my little prince.

Best piece of advice you’ve received:
“Treat others as you would like to be treated.”

You in only three words:
High Value Woman.

Hard Skills: (Mostly needed in Service Industry: 1. Second Language Proficiency (English Must, then French, Chinese, Japanese, Hindi, Spanish), Computer Knowledge, Project Management, Marketing, Legal Compliance, Software Knowledge.

Soft Skills: (Mostly needed in Service Industry: 1. Conflict Resolution – Must know BATNA (Best Alternative Negotiated Agreement). 2. Time Management 3. Team Work 4. Adaptability, Flexibility & Professional Integrity 5. People Management.

Prayer For The Human Civilization:
We came together in humility and unity to offer a prayer for the human Civilization. May our collective journey be guided by compassion, understanding and a shared commitment to the well-being of all. We all created by same source. Almighty create us all as a team and this nature is same for everybody- Water, Air, Light. So Grant us the wisdom to recognize our common Humanity and fostering empathy for one another. May our actions be rooted in kindness and our words be a source of inspiration and encouragement. May our hearts be open to love, our minds open to understanding and our hands open to help those in need.

The InCAP: Thank you, Ms. Zannatul Ferdaous! It’s a glittering conversation with you!

Ms. Zannatul Ferdaous: My pleasure! Wish you all the best! Thank you.

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