For spa therapists, it can be challenging for those who want to grow their careers from their hands-on skillset into a more business or management-focused role. This year, the Hilton introduced a program to address this transition, with their first-of-its-kind School of Wellness Spa Leader Onboarding Program.
The program provides Hilton employees with education and practical tools that will allow them to take a larger role in the business aspects of their spa, allowing participants to grow their careers while still maintaining the flawless experience ethos that Hilton is built on. The Program was also designed to propel, retain and attract new professionals to the spa industry.
Spa professionals receive an eight-hour online crash-course in how to be a savvy business owner, including everything from learning how to balance a budget and oversee a facility’s operations and marketing to managing teams and more. The curriculum includes quizzes and operations tips from Hilton spa leaders around the world, including a 30-second video element that encourages spa directors across the world to share their own tips and tricks on topics from promotion to controlling miscellaneous expenses.
“Our industry is all about empowering our guests to find balance and be the best versions of themselves with our help to seek their personal wellness,” said Jill Carlen, global director of spa concepts, Hilton. “With our Spa Leader Onboarding Program, we’ve found that empowering spa employees to take the reins of the business allows them to apply those hands-on skills in new ways, which benefits both the employees’ experience and guests’ experience as well.”
Since its launch, 66 spa professionals have graduated from the program. Lindsay Neeley, spa director at Waldorf Astoria Spa Orlando, was one of the first to do so. “The Hilton Spa Leader Onboarding Program was a wonderful refresher tool [for me], but it was especially invaluable for my assistant director, managers and supervisors. The program covers a variety of topics so comprehensively that it helps set developing leaders up for success in future roles.”
The Spa Leader Onboarding Program is one of three winners to be honored in the Leadership & Philanthropy category of the ISPA Innovate Awards, a distinction selected by fellow ISPA members that celebrates “creativity and commitment in an ever-changing market.”
Hilton’s spa and wellness team is now celebrating its recent recognition at the International Spa Association (ISPA) awards, taking out the award for the 2019 ISPA Innovate Award for the Hilton School of Wellness Spa Leader Onboarding Program.