Confession: Last Wednesday was the highlight of my career
Our company Christmas party was held last week and, believe it or not, I think it was the highlight of my career. I realize that is saying a whole lot. I’ve been fortunate enough to have been recognized recently for a few professional awards, but last Wednesday night takes the cake.
First, a little history. The Christmas party I’m talking about is for all of Accent Inns general managers, sales people, everyone who works here at Head Office and the folks that have retired with us. I organize the party completely because it’s my way of thanking everyone for taking such good care of me throughout the year. This year I decided it was going to be a surprise, just to keep everyone guessing.
We met at the Empress Hotel’s posh Bengal Lounge for a drink. There was lots of angst and excitement leading up to the event: “What shoes should I wear? How far will I have to walk? Why can’t you just tell me where we are going? I hate surprises!” You get the idea. A drink at the Bengal was a great way to calm everyone’s nerves and get the night started off on the right foot.
I lead the group out onto the Empress’ grounds and across the street to the museum’s foyer where we were greeted with popcorn smells coming out of the IMAX theatre. “Are we going to see a movie?” Up the escalator to one of the museum’s galleries where we were greeted with Champagne and Christmas Carolers. After a few appies we were escorted into the Royal BC Museum’s “Old Town” that was decorated for Christmas with a long table set for a family dinner of 40.
The room took our breath away. For those who have never been to “Old Town” in the RBC Museum, it is literally a replica of an old BC town’s main street from the turn of the century. Decorated to perfection for Christmas, it was a setting that was at once unique and fabulous!
We passed the vegetables just like a regular family up and down that long table. The wine flowed and people’s hearts opened up even more. Impromptu speeches began and the night turned into a love-in.
This culture at Accent Inns is attributed to the family atmosphere that my dad, the founder of Accent Inns, built. I can’t take any credit for it but it certainly was mine to lose. And judging by last Wednesday night the culture and team at Accent Inns is as vibrant and as loving as it has ever been. And so, there’s my career highlight for you. Despite the tough last couple of years and the changing of the guard from my father to myself, we’ve got ourselves an amazingly tight knit family here at Accent Inns.
Here’s a shout out to my team, I love you all, and I thank you for making my night, my year, and my career: Merry Christmas everyone!