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April, 2018 – The Young Hotelier Award is an initiative of the General Manger Council, which is a consolidation of General Managers of Viennese five star hotels. On the 11th of April, the 15th annual Young Hotelier Award took place in Vienna with the aim to support young talents in the hospitality industry. Besides the opportunity to expand knowledge and network, a participation in the competition offers exceptional prizes such as a scholarship at the famous Cornell University with a value of 10’000€ or an MBA the Modul University Kahlenberg with a value of 25’000€. The award is separated into the Diversey and the Modul Contest.

As part of a glamorous event gala, Stefanie Pirolt of The Ritz-Carlton, Vienna was awarded and honored as winner in the Diversey contest category with thunderous applause. The contest encompassed a twenty minutes long presentation about innovative programs to continue attracting vocational apprentices as well as hospitality and tourism graduates to hotel companies in Austria. The aim was to develop a strategic position for hospitality firms to meet the expectations and needs of this special target group. The overarching question was how various models, such as a focus on work-life balance, flexible working hours and career growth can be applied within the context of a 24/7, 365 days a year hospitality organization.

Stefanie Pirolt offered a highly creative and exceptional approach by suggesting a hospitality apprenticeship with A Level in combination with a thirty hour work week. Moreover, her suggested program offers the opportunity for a six months long international experience in order to attract and retain young talents in the hospitality industry. The underlying principle was to reduce the regular working times to six hours a day to foster motivation and creativity, by enhancing work life balance. Ms. Pirolt found through research, that the new generation values work life balance the most and is looking into practical application of the learned information. Firms should therefore offer benefits focused on health and fitness, while offering reduced work hours and extended practical application.

General Manager of The Ritz-Carlton, Vienna, Christian Zandonella, says: “We are proud to have Stefanie Pirolt amongst our Ladies and Gentlemen. Stefanie is highly valued for her engagement, creativity as well as pursuit for improvement and success. We are looking forward to many years to develop the future of hoteliers in Vienna!”