By Rebecca Skilton
Intro – While Anastasia Parashis’s co-workers believe she’s breaking the millennial norm, the 24-year-old rising star attributes her achievements to a combination of hard work, passion and determination.
Atura Hotel Dandenong’s Conference and Events Executive Anastasia Parashis is quickly accumulating an impressive and extensive rap list.
Nominated by Atura Dandenong’s general manager Lisa Parker, Anastasia has been selected as a finalist at the Victorian level for the Australian Hotel Association Awards in the Rising Star category.
If successful, Anastasia will move on to the Australian Hotel Association (AHA) and Tourist Accommodation Australia’s annual National Awards for Excellence to compete for the Rising Star title on a nationwide stage.
“The criteria states that the rising star is open to any employee in the hotel up to the age of 26,” Ms Parker explained.
“I think Anastasia is a bit of a gun. She was nominated for this award last year as well and was successful in being a finalist. She breaks the norm of the millennials – she’s very hardworking and she’s very dedicated. She’s got a passion for her role and for the hotel and I think you should reward that passion and dedication. So that’s why she has been nominated – she’s a standout in our team.”
In an industry with over 5000 registered AHA hotels nationwide, from a young age, Anastasia was aware she would be required to go the extra mile to capture employer attention.
A self-admitted ‘organiser’, Anastasia dedicated her free time to partake in volunteer events; an element of her life which she attributes to the acquisition of her first job at Carlton’s Rydges on Swanston hotel.
“What made me standout from a lot of the other people who graduated at the same time is that I did a lot of volunteering throughout my study (of event management). I had over a page of volunteer work on my resume. If I averaged it out, I did about one volunteer event every three weeks,” Anastasia explained.
“I was just doing all the volunteering I could. As a person I’m so determined and I just wanted to get ahead, so I needed to do something more than everybody else.”
Prior to her Atura hotel career, Anastasia not only worked for Rydges on Swanston, but also Box Hill Institute where she took on a management role as a food and beverage supervisor. Now working as Conference and Events Executive, Anastasia’s career involves everything from organising initial function inquiries, site inspections, contracting and invoicing, to even preparing guests’ selected decorations for their events.
However, having been working in the industry since age 17 and advancing quickly to her management positions, Anastasia admits that the social implications of being highly career focused at such a young age has the potential to produce trying times.
“To be totally honest, I actually really struggled with (working so much) when I was younger, only because I felt like a lot of my friends were behind me – not that that’s a bad thing – because I am young and I wouldn’t expect people my age to have necessarily achieved as much as I have. But when I was younger it was definitely hard because friends would be going out and I would always be at work,” Anastasia explained.
“It’s not like I didn’t go out and have fun. I still went out; it’s just that I might have got there late or left early because I had to get up early the next day … but now what I do is just normal.”
Along with Anastasia’s nomination, Atura Hotel Dandenong in Eumemmerring is nominated for a number of awards including the Outstanding Community Service Achievement award, Mid-Range Accommodation Hotel of the Year award and Hotel Restaurant of the Year award.
As Anastasia believes, Atura’s nominations are derived from the positive culture maintained by the hotel’s staff and managers.
“Our team is really enthusiastic, we’re all really happy to work towards the same goal. We work really well together – we all communicate really well and it just filters down the staff … “(We’re) really a hidden gem in the area,” Anastasia said.
But for those looking to follow in Ms Parashis footsteps, the Conference and Events Executive was happy to share a few secrets in achieving career goals and dreams.
“Strive to do your job well no matter what you’re doing,” Anastasia encouraged.
“Whether it’s the most basic task or something really complicated – just strive to do it really well and the managers will notice it. And show enthusiasm. You can still do it well and not really care, but if you’re enthusiastic then show it and people will notice.”
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