Notes: Marketing Manager, Old Course Hotel, Golf Resort & Spa
I'm Dylan Kelly and I feel very lucky to market one of the leading resorts on the planet. My role promotes award winning golf, spa, food and drink, all of which I’m passionate about and certainly makes the job a bit easier! Our resort mission statement is to deliver outrageous hospitality experiences and as a five star resort it is our responsibility to do so.
I have a background in Marketing and Communication having worked in varying industries such as Renewables, Oil & Gas, Retail and Telecommunications.
Why are languages important in your field of work?
Ours is an international industry requiring language skills. We attract guests from across the globe and it’s extremely important that we service these guests to five star standards. We employ approximately 25 different nationalities, who can speak over 30 different languages, allowing us to maximise our guest experience. Beyond that, it's important to understand cultural differences when communicating our message, not just languages. I recall a famous example in Hong Kong when a well-known airline handed out white carnations to celebrate the launch of a new route. On the face of it, a nice gesture, but not when you understand that for many Asians white flowers represents bad luck and even death.
My role is one that focuses on the promotion of the resort and international messaging is vital. We tailor our messages in various languages and work with our staff, translators and international agencies to do so. Golf is an international game but messages can be very different and it is important we communicate consistently across all territories.
Would you say a little language can go a long way?
I believe most of our visitors appreciate being engaged in their mother tongue and even trying to converse in a different language can be valued. I am fortunate to work with some great people from across the globe and many pride themselves on making visiting guests feel welcomed.
What languages have you learnt?
I recently undertook a Spanish course and have school level German and, whilst my own language skills are not at a high level, I would encourage all to consider learning a language. The linguistic challenges of learning a language have been proven to aid other parts of the brain and without doubt aid your chance of employment!
What would you say to anyone thinking of going into your field of work?
Hospitality is certainly a challenging career and you need to be aware of that. Amongst the most desirable qualities is communication and that is vital at all levels. The industry also requires high consistent standards but offers opportunities to learn and to travel.
Marketing is a very transferable skill and I’ve worked with a huge range of businesses, including international oil companies, high street retail, further education and even a certain pink pig (parents will know)! This has allowed me to have a fun career to date, however, if I had any regrets it would certainly be my lack of good language skills. Start when you’re young and it’s easier – and practise!
As part of the Business Language Champions programme in 2015, Dylan presented S3 pupils from Madras College with the task of designing some kind of publication or social media campaign, in another language, to promote The Old Course Hotel abroad.
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