Simon Coombs is instrumental in the development and expansion of the Shaza brand. He has regional expertise and experience in growing businesses from the ground up. His position before joining Shaza as President and CEO was as Executive Vice President and CFO at Kempinski.
Before this Simon spent 16 years with Hyatt International in various positions linked to development and finance. Most recently, he held the Hong Kong based position of Vice President of Finance for the Asia Pacific region, where he was responsible for Corporate Finance, Hotel Finance and Treasury functions as well for the implementation of Global Corporate Strategy for Hyatt International in Asia Pacific.
Hospitality career development can take time and a traditional career path might take someone from entry level service roles to top level management. But today's graduates want advancement fast, as Simon Coombs explains in this TV show.
Hospitality career development paths
My career started completely by accident, I was going into banking and I ended up in hospitality. So whether it was a good thing or a bad thing, I’m happy that I took that route. I think that what we’re seeing now, I’ve been to the Tourism Council in Lucerne and listening to some of the young graduates coming through into hospitality. There is an element of wanting to run before you can walk. I don’t know how you hold people back. But my background, I was a management trainee, I’ve had tomatoes thrown at me by executive chefs and been through the hard graft of understanding how hotels operate. And I think that’s very important. And you have to put things in perspective with a 30/40 year career, spending one or two years in the industry that you intend to go into is absolutely invaluable and why you would not welcome that opportunity is beyond me. But the new generation tends to find that they want to be into senior positions very quickly without the background in hospitality. I don’t think that this can happen. So that impatience, I would quell that a little bit.
Hospitality TV is very interested in hospitality career development stories. Keep an eye out for the next 10 experts to be announced as part of Hospitality250.