Luxury Hospitality: Behind the Scenes with Solveig Yong
From writing proposals to assisting trainers, Luxury Hospitality’s Solveig Yong is a self-confessed Jack of all trades. An ex chief stew who spent ten incredible years at sea before moving ashore after the birth of her first child, she now works in a support role with the leading crew training company, helping out anyone who needs it, making sure communication is working well, and that everyone is on the same page.
Here we talk to Solveig about her earlier life on board, her transition ashore, and the most important lessons she has learnt during her time in the superyacht industry.
Please can you tell us about your earlier career and how you got into the yachting industry?
I got into yachting via a friend of mine whose dad is the owner of MY Sherakhan. I never really thought it was for me, but when I joined I was immediately overwhelmed by all the luxury, as to be expected! Being in service and handling all this beautiful food and wine, I was very happy in my job – I knew straight away that yachting was for me. It was a great experience travelling to all those beautiful places I had never been before, meeting so many people and making lifelong friends.
What did you enjoy most about working on board superyachts and what prompted your move on shore?
It has to be visiting the most beautiful places in the world. I also loved being in service and serving beautiful foods. Not one day is the same and that makes it very special. I left yachting after ten amazing years at sea when I got pregnant with my son Archie.
Your final job before moving ashore was as chief stew. In your opinion, what are the most important qualities a chief stew must possess?
A chief stew must be assertive, have strong leadership qualities, and be able to delegate. Empathy is key when leading a large team who all live together and come from different cultures.
How did your time spent on board prepare you for life at Luxury Hospitality?
Spending time on board some of the largest and most luxurious yachts in the world has set me up with the mindset that’s needed to support such yachts. My experiences over those ten years have given me a great mind set when it comes to understanding what yachts want.
How long have you been working at Luxury Hospitality and how did it come about?
I’ve been working with LH for around a year and a half now. I knew Peter from before, and we got back in contact after I had my son. We had some lovely chats and eventually found a great position for me.
You work in a support role, meaning your tasks are very varied – what is the scope of your position?
I’m a Jack of all trades! I’m still figuring out the role but I’m basically helping anyone who needs it, making sure communication is working well and that everyone is on the same page.
How would you describe a typical day at work?
What I love about my job is that it can be so different every day. From writing proposals to assisting our trainers, it’s a fun job and I love to still be involved in the yachting industry.
Where are you based and do you get to travel much with the role?
I work from home, occasionally coming into the office. My partner is still in yachting so he gets to do all the travelling!
How do you effectively manage your time to ensure all tasks get completed in a timely manner?
I keep clear lists and notes to ensure I don’t miss anything. And of course, we have an amazing support team and we really can rely on each other.
How involved are you in social media for Luxury Hospitality and how have you seen it grow?
I’m not involved in that part of the business, but LH is definitely a lot more active online since I started.
What’s the most important lesson you’ve learnt throughout your career so far?
Work hard in silence, and let your success be your noise.
When you’re not at work, where can we find you?
I love to go for nice walks with my dog and son – I love to be outside and doing active things. You’ll also find me catching up with my friends over nice meals.
Tell us a fact about yourself that might surprise your colleagues?
Maybe that I’m ¼ Chinese blood! I don’t think there is a lot they don’t know about me - I am an open book.
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