Hospitality in Four Languages
It takes hard work and dedication to create the Turning Stone hotel experience guests expect. For Khin (Adam) Soe, Housekeeping Team Leader at the hotel, that challenge is one of the best parts of the job—no matter the language.
In his day-to-day responsibilities of keeping the team together, Adam speaks, writes, and reads Burmese, Malaysian, Indonesian and English.
The result, of course: a team that works together and keeps rooms tidy.
Adam was born in Burma, but his family eventually relocated to a refugee camp in Thailand. While his parents remain in Thailand today, he immigrated to the United States and began seeking ways to help support them. That’s when he began working as a housekeeper at Turning Stone, quickly picking up skills and building English fluency. He also developed a passion for learning new things.
“When I came to the United States, I didn’t speak English,” he says. “My teacher taught me English and how to find work.”
Going above and beyond quickly became the hallmark of his work, whether preparing guest rooms or translating information for his coworkers. Eventually his hard work resulted in a promotion to Team Leader. The role requires a wide range of duties, from coordinating with staff to assisting guests during their stays.
When asked about his success, Adam says it all comes down to commitment and positivity.
That goes double for his team, and he strives to be there for them whenever they face challenges on and off the job. Adam checks in often and keeps lines of communication open so that everyone, no matter their primary language, is on the same page.
When he arrived in the United States, Adam’s focus was helping his family. Now, that goal has expanded. He says he’s always working on his English and helps fellow refugees at The Center in Utica so they can improve their language skills as well. He also says if they’re looking for work, he highly recommends housekeeping jobs with Oneida Nation Enterprises.
“They care about you. There are good benefits, good pay, and opportunities for promotions,” he says. “They help you with everything.”