Sandals Resorts International
GULL implementation - April, 2009
A profile of Sandals Resorts International (SRI)
Sandals Resorts International has been the Caribbean’s leading all-inclusive resort company since 1981, with more amenities, innovations and choices than any of its competitors. In an industry category exploding with new contenders, the experience, training, and talent of Sandals' management team and resort staff ensure that the company is well positioned to stay at the forefront of the ‘all-inclusive’ market. The company's primary hotel brands are Sandals and Beaches, fittingly named given their location along some of the most sought-after stretches of sand in the world. With properties in Jamaica, the Bahamas, St. Lucia, Antigua the Turks & Caicos Islands and elsewhere, Sandals is a major employer in five Caribbean nations and has earned more awards than any other all-inclusive resort company. Source: www.fundinguniverse.com
A vision for career-long workplace learning at SRI
‘To engage with an educational institution outside the work environment is difficult – you have to find the time and more importantly, you need to have the cash. GULL offers an affordable degree – when we turn the workplace into a business school. The opportunity with GULL to ‘pay as you go’ at successive levels is phenomenal because the alternative requires a significant up-front investment. GULL offers a genuinely affordable, recognized degree.’ Phillip Brown, Director, HR Training & Service Standards Sandals Resorts International, Jamaica, Caribbean
Why are we deploying the GULL system?
‘Our role in HR and training is to facilitate the development of our team members so that they grow in confidence, realize who they are, how they contribute and how they can continue improving. GULL’s action learning process is drawing us closer together as we embark on this journey.
We are seeing transformed team members and they can’t keep it to themselves because they want others to experience this too. We are the custodians and champions for GULL in every resort – enabling and encouraging our team members to engage in lifelong, workplace learning.’ Phillip Brown
Members of the Sandals HR & Training team, Jamaica
Supporting SRI team members
‘We will be a resource centre for you so as to enable you to implement the GULL system.’
A faster way of learning; A smarter way of working
The goal is to ensure that the rate of learning at SRI keeps pace with the rate of change. By embedding the GULL system, outstanding customer service, learning, improvement and enhanced performance can be interwoven with business objectives. Team member-led projects are already delivering costs savings, new revenue and other improvements.
‘The GULL process initiates and drives a cycle of professional growth - reflecting, reviewing, correcting and improving – using the experience from action learning to create a better future. Our team members work long and hard in our resorts … our aim is to work smarter but not harder.’ - Phillip Brown
How will workplace learning help the business?
Here is a testimonial from Winston Anderson, General Manager, Sandals Grande St Lucian Resort & Spa, St Lucia, Caribbean.
‘Not many of us find it easy to reflect on our achievements at work. The GULL process helps me to do this in detail and I realized how significant the learning journey was after completing a learning review for myself.
What did I really learn? What am I taking forward? In a traditional educational setting there are books to read and other things to do – but how much of this really transfers into the day to day work environment?’
‘I undertook a practical, implementable project and it convinced me of the value of this process. I am now a strong advocate of lifelong action learning – the process encourages creativity and innovation and it is a God-send to General Managers and senior management because GULL enables our team members to help us on a day to day basis to run and improve the resort.’
Winston Anderson, General Manager, Sandals Grande St Lucian Resort & Spa, St Lucia, Caribbean.
In summary: SRI is using the GULL system to:
- Integrate human resource and business development and strengthen its outstanding performance and reputation for customer service, creativity and innovation – delighting guests from all over the world.
- Provide its large and complex resort operations with the tools, system and framework to become workplace business schools – delivering benefits for guests, the company and for team members who are now able to learn, develop and earn GULL’s recognized professional certificates, diplomas and degrees – at work – by integrating learning and working.
- Enable all employees to accelerate the rate of learning (individually and collectively) in order to keep pace with the rate of change (economic, competitive, environmental) and in so doing, become even more effective professionals at work.
OUR workplace IS the business school
‘It’s an amazing journey and I love the opportunity that this provides to reflect on my own learning needs. If you don’t know yourself, you can’t move forward in any area and this is a core benefit of the process.’ CL, Front Office Manager, Sandals Negril
GULL is a not-for-profit foundation registered in California, USA. GULL is recognized by the Government of Papua New Guinea & endorsed by other Governments, Leaders & Institutions.