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My Apprenticeship Journey: Robert

Robert Dinu has become a manager in the RedefineBDL Hotel business, and rose through the ranks thanks to his dedication and hard work. He tells his success story here.

What I did after I finished school

I started working with Hilton in 1999 – I was still in high school. I worked on the reception, it was good because I was very young. I went straight into the workforce. I wanted independence, I wanted to have my own money. I grew up wanting to be my own man, and my parents ran their own business. Throughout my whole life I felt motivated and stubborn, and wanted to get a job straight away. I didn’t want to rely on my parents. I worked in this role and other roles for almost six years, until I left for the UK. I knew then that my experience was valuable, and within a year I became a reception manager.

How I knew what I wanted to do with my life

I realised that I made a mistake not going to University. Although when I started a job aged 16, I thought that was what I wanted. But as I got older, I realised that I hadn’t been thinking long term. I had been in work for years but had no qualifications to back up what I had achieved. When I’d been working for six years I decided to start looking for higher level qualifications, but they were too expensive for me. I worked hard and got promoted a few times, but I still hadn’t got any further qualifications and wished that I could progress. By 2007 I was working in a 4* hotel, but I still needed to get better qualified.

Application process

I was working for a Hotel called Redefine BDL in 2014. I was already a manager at this point, and I still wanted to get better qualifications. I saw that they offered their staff apprenticeships. I had talked to someone in HR about my ambition, and two weeks later I was visited by a Lifetime Training advisor. I loved the course, and felt it fit me like a glove. It was great that it was so flexible and could work around my job.

Apprenticeship – Highs & Lows

I became much more analytical as a result of the apprenticeship, although I had experience of business from the ground up, I didn’t understand the principles behind what I was doing. I became more confident in managing financial aspects of the business, and how the business is run. I became much more confident in managing the payroll, how to keep costs down and how to reach my monthly targets. It made me a more effective manager, and helped me to think long term about the decisions I made and how I spent my money.

Difference it’s made to my life

I’m way more confident in myself now. I want to step ahead and get a final promotion in 2016. I am planning to become a General Manager, which would be the final step of my career. The training has definitely made me more confident in who I am, in managing the analytical side of the business as well as having on the floor experience. On a personal level I became more confident, and more encouraging towards the people I manage as well. Since I completed the course, I’ve encouraged three more people to do the same Apprenticeship, because it helped me so much. 

Thanks for reading! Stay tuned over the next fortnight for National Apprenticeship Week 2016!

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