The growth of ANEW Hotels & Resorts has been significant over the past five years and continues even in unprecedented times. ANEW’s thriving portfolio can be attributed to the brand’s driven, efficient team players comprised of hard-working, dedicated staff who are determined to make it the most thriving hotel group in South Africa. Among the hotel group’s revenue generators are five driven women.
Women’s Month calls for recognition of the efforts of the brand’s trailblazing women, who are a definite driving force behind ANEW’s success. These ladies are Group Marketing Manager Corné Visser, Group Revenue Manager Jolanda Jordaan, Regional Sales Manager Moiponyana Matshazi, and Central Reservations Team Leader Caroline Sepheso.
These remarkable women stressed the importance of leading by example, empowering one another, and having a support system.
According to Corné, women should never be afraid to succeed or ask questions. She says she built her confidence by stepping out of her comfort zone with the help of extra motivation.
“It is important to surround yourself with people who support you and your team. My mentor (Alan Campbell, ANEW’s Sales & Marketing Director) pushed me out of my comfort zone which built my confidence. If a task does not unfold the way you had hoped, learn from the challenges experienced and identify what you can do differently.
Women in leadership should take risks and not wait for opportunities, but instead create them. The support from ANEW, and my mentor has led me to rise in the ranks and last year I was promoted to Group Marketing Manager, a role I am incredibly proud of.”
Equipping yourself with knowledge
Adding to this, Jolanda says empowering yourself with knowledge is a driver to success. During her tenure at ANEW, she assisted with the successful integration of 14 Hotels onto Opera Cloud. She explained that ANEW was the first company in Africa to work on Opera Cloud and the current version the team is working on is the first in the world.
“My skillset on systems, project management, and rebranding (revenue and system related) have improved tremendously. Empower yourself with knowledge within your specific field of expertise. No one can take experience and knowledge from you.”
Since being in a managerial position, Jolanda says she has learned how to be patient and listen to everyone’s opinion before making an informed decision. Further, she reflected on the importance of identifying burnout, and how to remedy it. She continues, “Re-grouping was the best thing that could have happened to me.
I realised that work is super important and clear focus should be maintained to reach our goals, but I learned that one needs to maintain balance – at work and home.
The one should not overshadow the other. Yes, there are times when we need to put in the extra hours, and it is a blessing to be able to do it, but keeping a healthy emotional state and a healthy balance between work and home life is super important.
The empowerment of female leaders
Moiponyana says demonstrating strength with grace and guidance is what she learned during her journey as a Regional Manager. Adding to women’s empowerment, Moiponyana emphasises that women must never feel inhibited by their gender but be empowered.
“Women should never be afraid to make mistakes, as the learning process makes you stronger. Additionally, they should never hesitate to ask questions. There is enough on the table for us. As a result of working as a team and perseverance, I have learned to never lose faith in my capabilities. Overcoming adversity has also been a great learning experience for me.”
Furthermore, she encourages women to strive for what they want and have enough passion to go for it. “Women should lead with humility, be of service to each other and they must not compare themselves to peers. Most importantly, they should demonstrate strength with grace and kindness.”
Caroline agrees with Jolanda about equipping oneself with knowledge and setting a positive example. As a team leader, she says she often holds brainstorming sessions to hear ideas from her team.
My greatest accomplishment is that I continue to learn as a leader, and how to lead by example. This position requires open-mindedness and constant interaction with the team and new ideas. We need to celebrate and embrace each other as women in leadership.
Responsibility as National Sales leader
As the National Sales Manager, Tenielle has her hands full. She says she manages two teams – inland and coastal – which she continues to motivate. For her, the growing success behind the business is the transparency of her teams.
This is important to her and having regular sit-down meetings aids in her mentorship role. She encourages her team to tell her what she can do better as a manager, and what support they need from her as she says this helps build her team.
According to Tenielle, the two teams are responsible for bringing in ANEW’s revenue with impressive targets set per sales executive per month. “When it comes to the teams, always trust and defend your team, no matter what. My team builds my confidence.”
ANEW Hotels & Resorts, as a group is a brand for its people, by its people. Sales and Marketing Director, Alan Campbell, praised the women for their dedication and efforts.
“I’m very blessed to work with each one of them. They have an incredible work ethic and are so passionate about the business. I do not doubt that we wouldn’t be where we are today if not for their impact on the business. This goes beyond their outputs in their positions, but the larger culture and ethics of the people that work with them,” he concluded.
About ANEW Hotels & Resorts
ANEW Hotels & Resorts has evolved as a family business started in 1952. Family culture and attention to detail are firmly grounded in its people, and the group prides itself on the personal touch. The ANEW Hotel & Resorts Group owns and manages various properties in South Africa, with a vision to grow the brand by acquiring additional properties and management contracts in strategic locations.
The brand has managed to achieve incredible growth over the past two years, in the midst of a pandemic, and continues to look for opportunities to provide premier products for local and international business and leisure market segments throughout the country. They conduct their business within legal and ethical parameters and strive to provide customers with world-class service.
ANEW Hotels & Resorts received The Inspiration Award at Africa’s Travel Indaba 2022 as the organisation that has for the past two years inspired Africa’s travel Indaba community by the way in which they have challenged the odds to rise up and shine. Visit ANEW Hotels & Resorts for more information.