Open To… Fast Thinkers
Meet Emma Paquin
Our Senior Labour Finance Manager
After seven years working for a missile manufacturer, Whitbread wouldn’t have been the obvious choice for most people, but for me, hospitality always had a place in my heart.
When faced with the ‘What would you do if you won the lottery questions?’ my answer would always revolve around opening a cafe, hotel or restaurant.
I made the move to Whitbread in August 2015, and I’ve experienced a lot of different sides to the business already. I started in Finance, then went to Project Management, and now I’m back in Operations Finance. Having a role that sits on the boundary of finance and the rest of the business means my role involves engaging with the 30,000 people running the operation on the ground.
In the last 18 months I’ve started managing a team of seven. I love it, and I’ve been really surprised by how much I’ve enjoyed this. Getting to see your team develop together is priceless.
Getting to this point at Whitbread wouldn’t have been possible without the people-centric attitude that everyone shares. You’re encouraged to step out of your comfort zone, but given the support and resources to make big moves work for you.
During the pandemic, I’ve been working on managing the new Furlough scheme, and supporting people within the business. This opportunity meant I have been able to get fully immersed into the scheme and become an expert. Using my new skills and knowledge I’ve been able to adapt our working model and the way the team uses it to ensure everyone eligible receives Furlough payments.
Being able to help the business adapt in times of adversity, like the one we’re all living through, has felt really rewarding.
I’m part of a business that embraces and encourages change which is refreshing; anyone can put forward suggestions on how we can work better or where we can be putting more time and resources. We’re doing tasks and projects that enable our customers to socialise, celebrate, holiday and explore using our various brands. Getting our job right means enjoyment, memories and fun for our guests.