How to Set Yourself up for a Promotion During Tough Times
Hcareers / JANUARY 04 2021

Challenging times, like the past year we just went through and continue to face in 2021 are a great time to set yourself apart if you are fortunate enough to keep your job or get hired for a new opportunity. 

Hospitality companies are practically wiping the slate clean as far as how they are operating day to day and innovative solutions. This is a great time for any employee to bring forth ideas that could change the way something is done forever. 

There are also many soft skills that you can show that will help you stand out and show that you are an asset to the company. 

Here are some ways you can set yourself up during this time for future promotions.

Show your creativity 

In a recent interview with Senior Vice President, Human Resource – Americas for Hyatt Hotel Corporation, Nikki Massey, she mentioned how there are more opportunities now for employees to really stand out through their ability for creative thinking, “because we’re able to engage with each other more closely as we have smaller teams, there are so many more opportunities to put forth innovative ideas and engage with leaders.” 

As you take on your day-to-day duties and see what challenges you are facing, this is a great time to suggest solutions that can better operations, leading to a better guest experience. As a front desk representative, you may get a lot of feedback from guests on amenities they wish they could still have while social distancing, and find a way to provide that experience safely. For example, the Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe has created a personal barbecue experience for guests by delivering a grill, equipment, meat, and sides to their balconies. 

Or if you are on the human resources team, develop or implement a new way to gather feedback from employees to help create a safer and happier work environment. Find a new way for team members to communicate or stay up-to-date on industry and company news, or talk to each other to keep morale strong.

Leaders and managers will remember who helped the operations improve or who created new solutions during this time and when they are able to promote team members again, you have a higher chance of being considered. 

Agility is key

The ability to move and think quickly is an asset during a challenging time. Guidelines, safety protocols, and available information changed daily as scientists learned more about COVID-19, so companies had to pivot quickly to keep up and keep everyone safe.

Employees who show they are able to keep up are some of the best to have throughout a company during any time but especially during challenging times. Show your leaders your agility by

  • Changing course easily; learning new technology or safety procedures
  • Meeting customer needs and wants 
  • Keeping up with industry trends and news 
  • Being a great listener and collaborator
  • Taking on more responsibilities

It is important not to burn yourself out of course by taking on too many responsibilities or tasks, so make sure to be aware of your own capacity but try to take on as much as you comfortably can. 


Another soft skill employers will be on the lookout for is resilience. This means you adapt well in the face of adversity or that you bounce back well from challenges. Needless to say, the pandemic and economic crisis are some of the biggest challenges we’ve faced, and still face, to date.

You don’t have to pretend to be fully unaffected, quite the opposite, however in order to show that you are resilient, you have to be able to persevere through and show that haven’t been defeated. 

You most likely lost team members from layoffs or furloughs, your health may have been affected, you may have even gone through a layoff yourself, but being able to search for a job with momentum or take on more responsibility to make up for fewer team members without complaining or resisting shows that you make the most of a tough situation and you are a true team player. 

Everything you did during this time is a chance for you to show that you want to be a part of the company and that you are an asset. Managers and leaders will be looking for those employees to reward them when the industry is back on its feet, and since most teams are smaller and employees of all levels can engage with leaders more you have the chance to really shine through.