What Women’s Day Means To Us

WomensDay2013

 

In light of Women’s Day, I asked some of our lady General Manager’s to tell us what this day means for them.  The stories I got back inspired me and made me feel alive.  See for yourself.

Introducing… Linda Reddy, GM of Garden Court Sandton City:

Linda Reddy, General Manager Garden Court Sandton City

Linda Reddy, General Manager Garden Court Sandton City

I am celebrating Women’s Day by having an extended long weekend and as I write this, my 5 year old daughter is making me look like a princess.  I am reflecting on my role as a mom, wife, friend and leader.
I love being in the hospitality industry and having grown up with a parent in the industry, it seems it was kismet….if you ignore the science degree and finance experience.

This is a challenging industry as most service industries are and as a result I do not have lots of time to spend with the people I love. So I have learned to focus on the quality of the time I have and ensuring that good conversations are practiced daily. The passion I have for my job arises from my genuine interest in people and providing them with engaging experiences.  This is also an evolutionary industry, if you stay still, you might cease to exist. There are new experiences and something new to learn every day and so there is always excitement.

In my 7th year as a General Manager, Garden Court Sandton City has become my 444 bedroomed baby and we are finally getting to understand each other. Our new hotel restaurant, Riffs Bar & Grill opened in May and the experience has taught me so much about cooking and food service… much to the delight of my husband.

In a nutshell, I love my job and love the people who love me enough to support me through it.  Being a woman, I am genuine and ambitious. Being a mom, I’m a fighter and protector.  This is what Women’s Day reminds me of.

linda family

And then, Margaret Mason who is the General Manager of Southern Sun Hemingways sent me something that inspired me so much.  This is what Women’s Day means for her:

Women’s Day for me was a day that saved my life.

For around 3 years, I had been feeling poorly and eventually after my own dogged determination and many appointments, they found out what was wrong with me and resolved it on 9th August 2006.  I had Stage 3 Breast cancer.   I had to have a bilateral mastectomy. It’s not often that you get Doctors to work on a public holiday!  It was deemed necessary as the cancer was so advanced.

My eyes were opened for the first time about what people thought of me.  I live on my own and all of my family is overseas. My friend from Johannesburg flew in to go through everything with me, 2 of my assistants were there from the beginning to the completion of treatment many months later.  My family did a roster where they covered the next months, sisters, brother, sister in law, neices and nephews, I was never alone.  Although, with the drugs I was on everyone must have wished that they were elsewhere, as they made me volatile (worse than usual).

I sit here 7 years later healthy as a horse, thinking that Womens Day for me is a day to celebrate as it is one more year of life, I am a cancer survivor.

You’ve heard it from our lady GM’s, now it’s your turn.  What does Women’s Day mean for you?

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