Meet Staff Member Arali Valdes
It’s the details that count – from the neatly set pillow, to carefully pressed napkins, every detail becomes an intricate part of the guests’ experience. These valuable details wouldn’t exist without the remarkable people behind the scenes. Arali Valdes joined the Housekeeping team over a year ago but recently accepted the newly created position of Accounting/HR Clerk.
Arali was born and raised in Saltillo, Mexico, a city over 500 years old and a population of over 700,000 people. She grew up with her two sisters and later moved to Monterrey, the capital and largest city of the northeastern state in Mexico.
“I met my husband in high school and attended university together,” says Arali. “I’m a very detailed-focused person so I decided to earn my degree in finance management, and began my career at a bank while also helping the family business.”
Arali and her husband started their family in the hustle and bustle of the big city. When their daughter was four, her husband’s company offered him a position in Canada. Although it was a very difficult decision, Arali and her husband decided to embrace this exciting new adventure and moved to Cambridge, Ontario.
“We thought, let’s give it a try and if we don’t like it, we can always move home,” says Arali. “Five years later and we have a wonderful life full of new beginnings and now our three-year-old son!”
Moving her family to another country was not without its challenges. Canadian cuisine is much milder, the rhythm in Cambridge is obviously much slower than in Monterrey, and raising her two children in an unfamiliar culture would be daunting for any parent. However, Arali also faced the challenge of not having her education recognized in her new country.
“Aside from having to work through the process of obtaining my work permit in Canada, my finance degree isn’t recognized due to finance rules differing from country to country,” explains Arali. “So for the first few years in Canada I stayed home to raise my children and care for the house.”
Just over a year ago Arali came across a position at Langdon Hall for the night laundry and thought “let’s give it a try”. Working the night shift would certainly be a challenge but a friend, who was a previous employee, assured her that she would be working with an amazing group of people.
“I had been doing the family laundry for years, and I thought how wonderful it would be to get paid in actual money instead of hugs and kisses,” laughs Arali. “So I accepted the position and took pride in this very humble role, knowing every detail counts!”
Arali continued in night laundry for nine months until she was given the opportunity to move into the role of Room Inspector for Housekeeping, giving her the chance to get to know the hotel during the day. However, her ultimate goal was to return to a similar role she left behind in Mexico.
“It’s been a long detour but I want to earn my CPA designation here in Canada, but I need relevant work experience,” explains Arali. “Luckily, the team at Langdon Hall has been extremely supportive and found the role of Accounting/HR Clerk for me to transition into.”
Arali is now assisting with the daily duties for both Finance as well as Human Resources team. Although job requirements have changed, Arali’s position is still detailed focused and a step closer to her career goal.
“It’s a great feeling working with an incredible team that provides you with a sense of belonging,” says Arali. “I am excited to explore this next chapter of my new beginning.”