As someone who can very rarely work an entire day and then muster enough energy to make it to the gym afterward (there just aren’t enough hours in the day!), I have the utmost respect for people who can manage to get full workouts in during the workweek.
Olympic athletes, however, take it to a whole new level (obviously) … and I’ve recently gained an ever deeper admiration for these people.
As the general public around the globe waits in anticipation to see how well the athletes are going to perform in London this summer, the competitors themselves are giving it their all in preparation. And some are even working double time … clocking in for work at Hilton Worldwide properties when they’re not sweating it out at the gym.
Hilton has had a longstanding relationship with the U.S. Olympic Committee and recently took it one step further by becoming a sponsor of the U.S. and China Olympic teams. As part of the partnership, Hilton executives thought it would make sense to support the athletes by providing them with employment opportunities, according to Matthew Schuyler, executive VP and chief human resources officer at Hilton.
The program started 18 months ago, Schuyler said. Hilton employs 12 Olympic athletes in its properties, nine of whom will be competing in London.
Athletes take on anything from front-desk jobs to back-of-house operations in the properties’ response centers during the training season. The option of the property in which to work is an added convenience for the athletes as they can choose to work in the area where they’re training or work at a hotel near home.
It can’t be easy making the transition from full-time athlete and then adding hotel employee to the list of your commitments. To make sure everything runs smoothly, Hilton brings in a third-party to help with the training process.
Sounds like a sweet deal for the Olympians, but what’s in it for Hilton?
“For us, it’s a no-brainer. If you’ve grown up as an athlete training for the Olympics, you’re obviously a hard worker … obviously loyal, obviously dedicated to your passion. This is just a natural fit for our Olympic athletes,” Schuyler said.
After the games in London wrap up, Hilton hopes the athletes stay with the brand to work in part- or full-time positions.
“Our aim is for this to be a long-term relationship. We don’t just want the athletes to work in our properties while they’re training. We want them when they’re done,” Schuyler said.
So, let’s pretend for a second we live in an alternate universe where I am an Olympic athlete with the opportunity to work for Hilton. My dream situation would involve me training to compete as an artistic gymnast while working the front-desk at the Hilton Marco Island Beach Resort & Spa. Hey, a girl can dream!