Hoteliers Focus On Developing Future Leaders In Sector

By Dave Simpson
Hoteliers Focus On Developing Future Leaders In Sector

Focusing on leadership, career development, diversity and wellness, Irish hoteliers from across the country gathered in Portlaoise this week, for an Irish Hotels Federation (IHF) conference called ‘Shaping Future Leaders (within the sector)’.


The conference, which took place at the Midlands Park Hotel, is part of the IHF’s wider ‘Shaping Brighter Futures’ programme, aimed at supporting career development and nurturing people within the sector.

Delegates heard from a range of expert speakers, including an address from Kevin Empey, a leading expert on organisational agility and the future of work with over 25 years’ experience in people strategy and leadership development supporting business leaders, HR leaders, and their employees to thrive in the changing world of work.

Denyse Campbell, president of the IHF, said that the heart of every successful hotel and guesthouse is its people, and supporting the future leaders of tomorrow is key to the sector’s long-term, sustainable success as businesses.


“Effective leaders play a vital role in carrying the vision of a business and putting it into practice in a meaningful way,” said Campbell. “Across the hotels sector, our focus is on creating a culture of inclusiveness, diversity and innovation, where our next-generation leaders can thrive and have the support they need to achieve their goals.

“This is an essential strategic objective for Irish hotels and an integral part of our focus on supporting career development and nurturing people within our sector. Right across the country, hoteliers are investing in their teams, whether through bespoke education and training initiatives, such as the IHF Skillnet programme, or through an increased focus on well-being, diversity and inclusion at work.”

Commenting on the career opportunities in tourism, Campbell said, “Now, more than ever, it is a great time to consider a career in tourism, as it presents a wide range of exciting options suitable for individuals at any stage of their working lives. One remarkable aspect of pursuing a career in our sector is the unparalleled flexibility it provides.

“We understand the growing demand for greater control over work hours, especially among those re-entering the workforce, and hotels and guesthouses are uniquely positioned to accommodate these needs. From my own beginnings as a summer hotel employee to my current role as a general manager and president of the IHF, I have witnessed first-hand the incredible diversity this industry has to offer.

“Today’s event not only brings us together, but it also provides a platform to engage in meaningful discussions about vital issues within our sector. We have the privilege of hearing from experts across various fields, allowing us to gain valuable insights and shape the future of hospitality.


“It is a moment to embrace the incredible career prospects, flexibility, and knowledge-sharing opportunities that our vibrant industry offers. Together, we can pave the way for a thriving and inclusive future within the ever-evolving world of hospitality.”

Additional Information

A national database of live opportunities in the tourism industry is available at

Supporting over 220,000 livelihoods, tourism is Ireland’s largest indigenous industry, providing employment in every town and country in Ireland – equating to one in ten of all Irish jobs, with 70% of these located outside of Dublin. These jobs are crucial to communities, especially in many parts of regional Ireland.

Read More: Ashford Castle Announces Two New Directorship Roles

© 2023 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Dave Simpson. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.