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Meet the Team: Emel John Paragan, Stewarding Supervisor

Meet the Team: Emel John Paragan, Stewarding Supervisor

Aug 4, 2020

The original article was published on the Mar-Apr’18 issue of Longitude, ONE°15 Marina’s Club magazine. Read it here.

Behind every delicious meal at the Club are skilled chefs, thoughtful service staff and hardworking stewards behind the scenes. While they are rarely seen in public, Longitude manages to track down Stewarding Supervisor Emel John Paragan.

LONGITUDE: Hi John! Many of our Members may not be familiar with what you do, so could you tell us a little about your job?

Stewarding Supervisor Emel John Paragan: As stewards, we prepare the equipment and do the set-up for the events under the Food & Beverage (F&B) department. For example, preparing LATITUDE Bistro for lunch, or getting the Constellation Ballroom ready for banquets. Afterwards, we are also in charge of the washing-up.

Sounds like a lot of work! Can you share a little more in detail about the preparation before each event?
Sure. Every week there will be lots of F&B events at the Club, so we meet with the chefs and service staff beforehand to discuss about the items they are going to need. The plates and cutlery for each cuisine are different, and the chefs sometimes have live stations, so they require additional equipment like heating lamps and toasters. After the meetings, we start preparing accordingly.

Given that there is a lot of coordination involved, what is something that you find challenging?
Last minute changes to the menu and programme. On the day itself, we suddenly find that what we have prepared is not what is needed.

In these instances, what do you do?
Communication is key. Since such situations can be quite urgent, we react quickly to solve the problem. If the needed equipment is something we have, we make the switch. If not, we brainstorm with the chefs and service staff to find an alternative. Having worked with my colleagues for a few years, we understand each other and teamwork is second nature.

Looks like you have a close-knit team here. How long have you been at ONE°15 Marina?
I joined ONE°15 Marina in 2013, so I have been here for about five years.

You have been working here for quite some time then. Over the years at ONE°15 Marina, what is a memory that never fails to make you smile?
The moment when I was named Employee of the Year. It was surprising because we were all expecting a member of the frontline staff. But this award is not just for me. It is also for the entire stewarding department. It shows that the management acknowledges and appreciates the efforts of back of the house staff.

What do you think is an important trait for a good steward?
The patience to communicate well. In this line, we often have to work with others from different backgrounds, and miscommunication can happen. Keeping our cool to get the message across is essential. Also, in my role as a stewarding supervisor, I have to train new staff and explain to them when they get things wrong or forget their instructions. When they are particularly new and confused, this might be several times a day.

What are your future plans at ONE°15?
I love my job, and I am happy working here. So I have no intention to go anywhere else. My goal right now is to keep improving and bring greater satisfaction to our Members.

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