Name: Yvonne V.
Position: Assist Associate
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Dream destination: Southern Europe (Spain, Italy and Greece)
Drink or treat of choice: Fresh limeade with sparkling water
The first few weeks in a new job are stressful for anybody, regardless of the position, level or scope — you have to submit all your paperwork, start onboarding and training, and make sure you remember your new coworkers’ names. It’s a lot.
When Yvonne first started with Marriott in 1997 as a reservation agent, she had much bigger challenges to face outside of her new role, at home.
“I had a medically fragile son, who I thought was stable enough to start this new job,” Yvonne recalls. “Within a month of starting, my son was hospitalized. He was on life support and a very challenging patient even for the hospital ICU.”
Yvonne met with her manager to tell her what was happening and that she felt she had to leave this brand-new position in order to be at her son’s side in the hospital. Her manager’s response was not what Yvonne expected.
“She just opened her purse, took out her office keys and handed them to me. She said, ‘take care of your son first and do the training (online at the hotel we were working out of) when you can.’” Yvonne recalls.
“That was my ‘you had me at hello’ with Marriott,” she says. “This turned my life around.”
Fast-forward 26 years, and Yvonne is still with Marriott. She’s spent the majority of those 26 years with Marriott’s Customer Engagement Center (CEC) in Texas, working her way through multiple promotions and internal opportunities.
“I always gave 150% when I was working,” says Yvonne, adding that the support she received from her manager inspired her to join Marriott’s philanthropic efforts, and even signed up to lead the United Way campaign in their office.
Yvonne left the CEC to serve as an Account Executive for several downtown San Antonio hotels, but after four years in that role she returned to be able to work remotely, which is where she’s been ever since.
“Working from home was a terrific benefit for my work-life balance,” says Yvonne.
Learn more about Yvonne’s experience, in her own words, below.
What was your Marriott interview process like?
I remember being made to feel comfortable, just like a conversation between two friends, even though we had never met.
Any interview tips for candidates who want a role like yours?
My best advice is to be yourself and to be honest about your expectations and the limitations you bring to the job. Also, have a list of all your questions written down.
How would you describe Marriott’s culture?
Like a family, very supportive in caring for the associates. Like Mr. Marriott said, “Take care of the associates and they in turn will take care of our guest.” I have always loved my career with Marriott.
How have you used the Marriott Explore Rate?
This benefit has been used all over the world, by me and my family and friends. Now that I am a Quarter Century Club member, I have used it in Europe and earlier this summer have used it at the JW Essex House in New York, the Renaissance Austin and next month heading to the JW San Antonio Hill Country Resort.
When have you felt supported by Marriott?
I was so honored after only working for Marriott for seven years, my office nominated me for the JW Honoree award 2004 and with recommendations of several of my co-workers I received this honor. I was so humbled and surprised by the whole experience, the best part was meeting associates from all over the world. Meeting the Marriott family was incredible, they were all so down to earth with us and gave us a heartfelt welcome to Marriott Headquarters.
How has Marriott supported your family?
My family loved the employee gatherings we had through the years, everyone made them feel so special. My son, in particular, as he was wheelchair bound with all his life support equipment. All would welcome him and make him feel included. Sadly, I lost him in 2020 but my Marriott family was nothing but supportive during this difficult time. They also alleviated my stress about work when I had to care for my son. This was felt by my whole family and a huge benefit.