Kew & A with Director of Operations, Louise Dodd

We're all in this together

What challenges has your hotel faced with COVID-19? 

Everything happened so quickly, it was like being in a film of some sort. One day we were talking ‘what if’ and then it was real. No-one really knew how quickly this would change things – it seems months since the ‘lock-down’ announcement was made and it is only a couple of weeks.

What support did you feel you got from KGH? 

Immediate calls and messages from my boss and colleagues meant a lot to me. ‘We are all in it together’ really resonates here at KGH.

How has this experience affected your opinion of KGH?

It has just confirmed how well we work as a team and, although not all the answers were there at the beginning, because of the unprecedented speed of change, everyone I speak to is determined to be positive and make sure we come out of this situation in the best place. 

What has been your biggest personal challenge through this time and how have you overcome it? 

Being at home and not seeing some of the team, as well as feeling out of control of this ever-changing, unknown territory that we are trying to navigate through.

Oh yeah, and having enough food in the house for 4 adults!

What’s the biggest thing you’ll take away from this experience? 

Sometimes the future just doesn’t matter; it’s the here and now you need to deal with quickly; the ‘what ifs’ can’t be answered all the time. We need to focus on solution-based answers, not speculative ones.

What has been the most memorable and inspiring moment for you in this? 

My regional GM team & support team have been so positive in these awful circumstances. They have all had decisions to make around the business, as well as to consider their own personal circumstances and those of the teams they work so closely with. Even with emotions so high, they didn’t forget me and actually sent me a gift to say thank you after a very hard week for us all. I will never forget their kindness and the emotion it brought. I can truly say we ARE all in this together and I would not be able to do this without the outstanding team of people I work with.