Welcome to the National 4‑H Conference Center Blog!
by Jordan Waddell
November 21, 2016 4:26 PM
Each month we will take a look at the people that make this place the perfect spot for your group, meeting, training or class trip to D.C.. Not just our bricks and mortar, but the people that make it happen. Our passions and our mission. We love what we do here and we want to share it with you. Thorough out the year you will see recipes from Chef, pointers on touring D.C., tips on keeping your folks engaged during your training classes and a whole lot of fun.
I can tell you that we have sleeping rooms and meeting space and we can cater your event, or you and your guests can enjoy the buffet style service in our café. But everyone has that, don’t they? You want to be here because of our people and because of our mission. It’s their level of commitment to our mission that drives excellent service.
National 4‑H Conference Center is Washington, D.C.’s most unique non-profit hotel and conference center. We have been operating since 1959. More importantly, our proceeds go to support 4‑H, our nation’s largest youth development organization that teaches young people the skills they need for a life time.
Here at National 4‑H Conference Center we believe that the work you do is important and your time is precious. When you hold an event or meeting here, you get your own Conference Services Manager. This person helps you plan your event, asks you the right questions and takes the time to understand what is important to you and what your goals for the event are. They work with you to produce a flawless meeting so you can concentrate on things that matter most. Members of this team have been here for more than 10 years! You have an idea in your head and they pull it out to create a memorable event. Look for tips and tricks from our Conference Services Managers in the coming months.
The sales, conference services and front desk team members have a combined 250 years’ experience in the hospitality industry and we love waking up every day to be here for our guests and meeting new folks to tell them about our Center. We are proud of our property and proud of the people that work with us, so it is easy to sell the Center.
We even have our own educational department, where we design a learning experience, or team building or that full loaded guided tour of the city. It’s not just for the class trip! We have many adult groups that ask for the evening tour of Washington D.C.. The city is beautiful at night! For us it is about the hospitality, opening our doors to welcome you and making those memories and connections. Or being that “one stop shop” for your team building needs.
Our Chef and our Food and Beverage Director are amazing. Chef purchases food that is locally sourced and takes great pride in the dishes he serves. Chef’s international flair ads such a breadth and depth to our menus that your group is sure to be delighted by the dishes he creates for your meeting, he has even created custom menus for groups! His passion for cooking and serving people comes through in every dish he makes. Most important is his team, this group has been here for many years, and are very dedicated in preparing meals and delivering service they are proud of. They know the groups they serve and look forward to having them return every year. If you are concerned about food allergies, intolerances, or dietary restrictions our Food and Beverage Director is there to help ease your mind. While there are some things we can’t accommodate, we will do our best to help you where we can.
Now let’s talk about our most valuable and underrated teams…Housekeeping and Maintenance! You don’t have anything to worry about when you come to our property, our rooms are clean. Our housekeeping team takes pride in what they do. On more than one occasion, our housekeepers have gone out of their way to comfort a homesick student or make a stay more comfortable. We frequently receive a thank you letters from the parents and conference managers about the housekeeping staff.
We have a customer that runs a six-week program here, they know every member of our team. Our resident maintenance manager has received an award, not for his skills in facilities maintenance, but in guest service as he becomes the “dad” for the next six weeks to the program advisors and staff members of the program. He is here in the evening, listens to their stories and cares about them. For some it is their first “real” job and He’s not afraid to give them wisdom from his 30+ years’ experience.
While we started out just housing 4‑H programs and training volunteers and extension educators, we expanded to schools and other youth serving organizations. Soon our local churches, and businesses started holding their meetings here as well. We became that community place, we introduced guests to each other and referrals became a way of life. Folks realized that they wanted to do business that delivered a social impact. Our customers don’t see each other as competitors, but colleagues all working towards the greater good.
So you see, it’s not about the building, the 246 rooms or the 40,000 square feet of meeting space, complimentary parking or free wi-fi. We’ve hosted events with two presidents, a couple of first ladies, some foreign dignitaries, but each of our guests and group is special to us. It’s all about the people that make this place great! A great place to stay and a great place to work.
If you have a story about your experience here, we would love to hear it.