MEET THE HR INFLUENCERS:
Anna Chartres, CHRE
A PASSION FOR VARIETY
By Lisa Gordon
Like many human resources professionals, Anna Chartres fell
into the occupation, discovering a passion for it while work-ing
at a hotel in her native New Zealand. After moving to
Canada in 1989, she worked in various progressive posi-tions
before joining Fairmont Hotels 20 years ago.
Today, Chartres is the hotel chain’s regional director of talent
and culture for central Canada, overseeing more than 2,200 em-ployees
– including 1,250 at her home base, Toronto’s iconic Royal
She told HR Professional that the best part of her job is the vari-ety
served up by the hospitality industry.
Whether it’s supporting the development of Fairmont’s inno-vative
new mental health strategy, mopping up from a flood or
dealing with an influx of media during the International Indian
Film Academy Awards in Toronto, no two days are the same.
Indeed, this diversity is the spice that has defined Chartres’
30-year HR career.
When did you decide you wanted a career in
Anna Chartres: I didn’t actually decide on it; I fell into HR. I
started working in a hotel in New Zealand and loved it and got in-volved
in training. My boss at the time had no HR department in
the hotel and because I had a love and a passion for training, they
asked me if I wanted to be the director of personnel. I said, “Sure,
why not?” I knew nothing about it and had to start from scratch. I
didn’t know what I didn’t know back then! It was fun.
So that was your first HR job. What made you move on?
AC: I was in that position for two years. I met a Canadian, and
you know hospitality romances…to Canada I came!
38 ❚ FEBRUARY 2018 ❚ HR PROFESSIONAL