Twelve things I consider professional Key Learnings in the past year: HospitalityEducators.com

Key Learnings

“What is important is to keep learning, to enjoy challenge,
and to tolerate ambiguity. In the end there are no certain answers.”
Martina Horner, President of Radcliffe College

Tryng to identify “Key Learnings” in a given year is more challenging than it first appears. The reason I found it more demanding than expected because of the immense amount of reflection to discover what actually made a lasting impact.

Here are the professional Key Learnings, as applicable to me by my speaking, writing and/or consulting this past 12 months.

  1. Renovations need to make a WOW, in their planning, their delivery and their Return on Investment.  In tight economies, there may not be as much new product introduced but the upgrades in existing properties need to anticipate the future.  I stayed at a number of properties this year that clearly missed the mark and will not be significant players in their market by 2012, regardless of brand.  On the other hand, I experienced a number of excellent projects that were well executed.
  2. eCommerce is changing at tremendous speed and we all need to work to keep up. I am not discussing social media here, but the changes in Search Engine Optimization, the rapidly evolving ways that sites are found and used or discarded and more.  This is an area that should be addressed by Executives at all levels.
  3. Ethics in Hospitality. I see the need for people to re-address values in the hospitality marketplace in hiring, operations and marketing.
  4. Financial Accounting and Management needs to be reviewed by Executives at multiple levels. Technology has made skimming and following the money trail more challenging.   Reviews are needed by many p eople at all kinds of hospitality businesses.
  5. Marketing and Sales Management is now truly Global. We have as many or more readers and interest in our services and information internationally at www.HospitalityEducators.com as we do domestically.  The reason is the availability of information that can be shared cost effectively anywhere in the world.
  6. Ownership and management structures need to be seriously examined and tested. This is especially critical in family businesses.
  7. Recognizing the Value of Hospitality Associations as Business and Political Lobbying Resources. I have been a lifetime supporter of Hospitality Associations as a member, volunteer officer, committee member and more.  This year’s political action committees clearly identified the need for more of us to embrace these associations as essential business partners and an investment with a measurable ROI.
  8. Revenue Management does not have its own “mystery language”, but it is has evolved tremendously from the yield management tactics of ten years ago. As business and technology have made communication and the sharing of information truly global, the need to evolve fair pricing for all needs intense and ongoing attention.
  9. Service Delivery needs to be re-examined – again. There are truly new hospitality customers coming, from different countries, age groups, interests and personality.  The days of mass marketing and delivering “average service” are gone.
  10. Strategic Planning means today and 2020 thought process.  We have looked at our SWOT analysis several times this year and the results keep changing.
  11. Understanding and Embracing Green Hotel Business Initiatives is not just for someone else. In updating our www.HospitalityEducators.com section on sustainability, the number of You Tube interviews and detailed answers on “how to” use these initiatives are amazing.
  12. Reasonable Care continues to grow more important in the hospitality industry. In my consulting, research and work as an expert witness, I view the need for paying more attention to reasonable care becomes apparent.  Growing populations, untrained or inadequately trained staff, a litigious tendency by many and the weak economy all contribute to this.

Feel free to share an idea for a column at info@hoganhospitality.com anytime or contact me regarding consulting, customized workshops, speaking engagements … And remember – we all need a regular dose of common sense.

John Hogan is a successful hospitality executive, educator, author and consultant and is a frequent keynote speaker and seminar leader at many hospitality industry events.  He is Co-Founder of a consortium (www.HospitalityEducators.com) of successful corporate and academic professionals delivering focused and affordable counsel in solving specific challenges facing hospitality today. www.HospitalityEducators.com is a membership site offering a wide range of information, forms, best practices and ideas designed to help individual hoteliers and hospitality businesses improve their market penetration, deliver service excellence and increase their profitability. Individuals wishing to contribute materials may send them Kathleen@HospitalityEducators.com. Special introductory pricing is in effect for a limited time that also includes a complimentary copy of LESSONS FROM THE FIELD- A COMMON SENSE APPROACH TO EFFECTIVE HOTEL SALES.

Dr. John Hogan @ Texas Hotel & Lodging Assn Short Course 2010


Consulting Expertise and Research Interest

  1. Sales Management and training
  2. Turn-around and revenue management
  3. Professional Development for the Organization and the Individual
  4. Customer Service
  5. Making Cultural Diversity Real
  6. Developing Academic Hospitality programs
  7. Medical Lodging Consulting

If you need assistance in any of these areas or simply an independent review or opinion on a hospitality challenge, contact me directly for a prompt response and very personalized attention.

www.HoganHospitality.com

Your Hospitality Resource for the Hotel Owner, Innkeeper, Manager and Hospitality Industry Associations

http://www.linkedin.com/in/drjohnhoganchache

CONTACT

Dr. John Hogan, CHE CHA CMHS          United States – Phoenix, Phone: 602-799-5375
www.hoganhospitality.com/ Email: info@hoganhospitality.com.

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Questions I Wish You Would Ask Me™- Meg McDonough, President of Luxury Hospitality Consultants, LLC

HospitalityEducators Contributor
Meg McDonough, President of Luxury Hospitality Consultants, LLC

Meg has extensive travel experience, held prominent positions working with corporate presidents and CEOs, is a licensed real estate sales associate in Florida, and holds a Certificate in Hotel Management from the University of South Florida. She began her consulting business, Luxury Hospitality Consultants, LLC, in 2008.  www.LuxuryHospitalityConsult.comSRQHotelMgmt@aol.com

Questions I Wish You Would Ask MeTM includes interviews such as those found in our HOSPITALITY CONVERSATIONS,TM and and it also allows industry professional the opportunity to share their perspectives, values and opinions on additional areas and subjects that may not have been part of the planned discussion.   This segment will include a wide range of hospitality professionals from all portions of the industry.


We ask participants to answer at least five of the following nine questions.  Their responses will interest, sometimes amuse and definitely inspire you to consider how YOU might answer.
If you would like to participate, please contact John.Hogan@hospitalityeducators.com.

  1. Name your favorite hotel and why it is special to you

Princess Hamilton (Bermuda) as visited during the summers of September 1967 and 1968. I was impressed with the professional standards of the hotel operations overall: the staff were exceptionally attentive to providing the penultimate in services; waitstaff were mostly European-trained (many were interning at the hotel and their cross-training efforts were requirements for their future employer (a major cruise line) – I believe this was standard for that time period. White-glove service for fine dining on 6-course meals. No price menus were provided to our guests (only the host received the priced menus, as was appropriate at that time, and as a form of etiquette/courtesy to ones guests). Five-piece orchestra provided music during the dinner hour, followed by dancing. An outdoor gazebo lounge provided live jazz ensemble for entertainment and the bar was at capacity through the late night hours. The hotel also had two outside swimming pools (one with fresh seawater) which provided an alternate choice of pools. Complimentary Rum Swizzlers greeted every guest upon arrival (nice touch). The hotel also maintained a private beach enclave to which complimentary coach service was provided throughout the day. F&B also available at the beach site. Although there were no televisions to the hotel rooms (in those years – it may have changed since), an oversized Drawing Room in the common area was the choice place to meet other hotel guests and socialize over cocktails and card games. This was truly a place of leisure for the hotel guests and was always a social hub for cocktails and high tea service. Subsequent years led to the expansion of the hotel chain by adding a newer hotel – The Southampton Princess (set on the opposite side of the island).

My recent hospitality educational coursework led me to incorporate many of the hotel’s features within my own proposed hotel project for branding a collection of independently operated boutique hotels geared towards the high-net worth individual, specifically. My marketing / business plan incorporated seasonal stays at the hotel as an option for those who desired the experience of living at such a hotel within a resort environment.

2. Name your favorite restaurant and why it is special to you

My favorite restaurant (chain) was the former Magic Pan (Creperie) with two operations in Boston: Newbury Street and Faneuil Hall. I found the business model to be a great concept for not only its wide range of menu selections of hand-made crepes but also the aesthetically attractive interior design. Aside from its great location at Faneuil Hall in the historic district, there was an oversized fired crepe-making machine covered in a resplendent use of porcelain tiles to its massive surround. This certainly became the focal point for guests as they entered the restaurant. Crepes were served as appetizers, entrees, and desserts and complimented by their signature house salad incorporating a mild yet tangy combination citrus vinaigrette. Dining at The Magic Pan was always the choice location for social and business power lunches. I had the pleasure of knowing the interior designer for these two particular restaurants as she worked in our firm in Harvard Square (Cambridge) known as TAC (The Architects Collaborative), founded by Walter Gropius. Unfortunately, the entire chain was phased out in late 1989. I have incorporated the fundamental Creperie dining experience as part of my business/marketing plan for my proposed boutique hotel collection (currently under review for investor relations).

3. Where do you vacation the most often?

A favorite place for us to vacation and visit with family is at The Ocean Reef Club in Key Largo, Florida. We have been patronizing the member’s only private club since the 1970s. You will note my earlier Q&A interview with the Club’s current Senior Director of Culinary Operations, Philippe Reynaud, and therefore my continued interest in this location. Although this Club tends to be a seasonal highlight for members who either stay at their vacation homes, or on their yachts at the marina, there are a few full-time residents who live at ORC and enjoy the wide array of hospitality services, dining options, shopping, and sports activities. Its tranquil setting is ideal for getting away from business. A private jet airstrip on the property offers quick access to major airports; limited takeoff / landings are strictly enforced.


4. What is your favorite charity or cause?

The Southeastern Guide Dogs – They are a local charitable group that creates and nurtures a partnership between a visually impaired individual and a guide dog, facilitating life’s journey with mobility, independence and dignity. They have a wonderful Paws for Patriots program providing beneficiaries with veteran status the aid of a guide dog which has been specifically trained to meet the individual’s needs. www.GuideDogs.org

5. Name your pet service peeve, why and any ideas you may have to address it

I am, personally, not fond of certain chain restaurants where the climate permits (encourages) servers to become overly friendly with the dining patrons and host/hostess. My list includes: servers who are encouraged to sit down alongside the guests while taking an order, loud announcements of the “daily specials” and a recitation ad nauseum on how dinner will be prepared (which can be quickly countered by addressing these issues in writing posted on the menu for quick edification); constant interruptions and return visits to the table to ensure everything is OK (even to intrude on guests’ conversations with one another to make their point) – it’s just plain rude and, believe me, we will certainly let the waitstaff if there is anything we need. I would opt to suggest someone develop a “silent buzzer” system discreetly placed within reach of the dining host/hostess to call for service when needed (recollecting the formal home setting with the dinner bell was always placed at the host’s setting).

6. Who was the most important mentor in your life and why?


Giles S. Gianelloni (my father) continues to be my most important mentor in my life for his lifelong conversations on keeping truth and integrity at the forefront of everything you do. He constantly promoted dignity and respect for all, notwithstanding social level, ethnicity, race, age, or handicap. He maintained a strong work ethic during his work years and was an equal among his fellow workers and colleagues wherever he went. I have great respect for the level of camaraderie and social integrity for someone who guided me through all the choices I would make during my career years and a great defender of continuing onward whenever choices were either bleak and seemed defenseless: it just meant persevering forward, never faltering to educate oneself and learn new skills and careers – if necessary.


8. What is the one piece of advice you would offer to a graduating student with a hospitality degree?

While I was a student at USF (Sarasota) where I received my Certificate in Hotel Management, I took advantage of my prior 38 years of work experience as a corporate professional executive secretary / personal assistant. I already knew enough about how private-sector corporations operated and had sufficient insight on how high-level “think tank” operations worked vis a vis public, government, and private fundraising activities.

My knowledge and levels of expertise came through years of hard work and not being complacent in undertaking new tasks and assignments that were required of me. As I observed the interaction (or more precisely put – lack of interaction) of my fellow classmates during my coursework, I sensed a lack of commitment to learn, observe, and communicate in appropriate settings. Although most of the students had current work experience in the hospitality trade, they appeared impervious to the fact that their own interaction among their fellow classmates – as well as the faculty, instructors and visiting corporate department heads from area hotels and restaurants – came across as outright negligible to (in some cases) rude and blatant disregard for authority figures.

It would concern me that these particular students might not fare well or succeed in anything that would require them to make a living at a job that demands the utmost in professionalism and being capable of making critical decisions when necessary. With the expectation that students of the future seeking to expand their repertoire in their particular trade / career, I am a proponent of students undertaking internships that will provide them with not only hands-on knowledge and experience but also learn how corporations value their employees with security and promotions.

Many students could not see a future path in their field of studies other than to take the requisite courses needed to get a passing grade. The lack of dynamic thinking amongst this particular group of students seemed to have been overwhelmingly simplified and met only with their lack of etiquette and professionalism beset by the constancy of quick texting and superfluous conversations on cell phones (and this was done during class time). The path to a successful career in hospitality does, at times, require the use of technology and social media components; however, the ability to listen, communicate and focus on one’s chosen field in hospitality, per se, requires a graduating student to have sufficient decision-making capabilities built on knowledge learned, merits earned through successful completion of assignments / tasks, and ownership of a problem when it may arise – and not by default through complacency and insubordination. The student who meets a stricter set of priorities will be successful and recognized for growth within their chosen field.

Aside from the psychology of challenges any hospitality grad student will face will be the need to recognize that continuing education, training, and leadership skills will be the constant in their career path. Having a former instructor act as your mentor would be beneficial for the novice and experienced worker alike.
9. What is the one question do you wish someone would ask you in an interview today?

Some of my most relevant and important questions I typically pose to an interviewer have to deal with the current structure of the corporation, specifically: what has occurred to create the position for which I am interviewing. I want to know what may have been a deciding factor for the opening as this would divulge the level of factors for my own decision to “accept” or “decline” the position as offered. Scenarios range from poorly performing former employee (where was there fault – difficult employer or difficult employee – not a good path to follow); change in management structure or re-structuring to meet growth demands (this is good); vacancy due to lawsuit involving former employee (you really want to know a little more about that situation – as much as you can legally extract and with some sort of decorum – you want to avoid future challenges); maternity / paternity leave has given way to a full-time opening (and the firm has no plans to return the former employee to their job – really an unsafe choice); or DOA (overworked employee falls over dead on her first day – tune yourself into the abstract excuses you may receive).

Now… I only wish someone would ask me why I (as a qualified and experienced professional, with references ready on demand, and a multi-year career path noted in a well-written resume, etc.) am applying to a job which states the minimum requirements to become a candidate for employment. My resume, job skills and conversation level clearly indicate I have not only met their minimum criteria but now that I am “over-qualified”, there is no interest to proceed with an interview. The fear factors: (1) won’t be staying long on this job and will leave us as soon as something better comes along – quite possible; (2) will be quickly bored for the simple tasks accompanying this position and become stigmatized and leave us (not too bad on that one); wants “my” job (said the interviewer to self) – the threat of possibly taking the interviewer’s job is quite paramount and easily recognized when the level of questions become defensive and brisk (trying to dissuade interest from applying at all) – close, but no banana; or even the contention that this job only requires English-speaking candidates (concern that my other spoken languages might interfere with some strange union-afflicted drama about to take place and I might interfere with ongoing negotiations with the other staff or tradesmen (huh, but worthy of rewaxing my eyebrow by this time which has become stuck in the up-position).

So, when asking me why I would apply at all to a position that is, in someone else’s mind, subservient to my repertoire of skills and abilities, I remind them that I am present before them to provide in good conscience a bona fide interview, backed with a truthful resume, and complemented with past reference letters, etc. because I have: (1) researched the company and feel my contributions in the position as advertised would be beneficial to the company and look forward to becoming a part of the company and its future (generous mindset); (2) I am clearly a candidate willing to undertake other assignments that may come forward and which may accentuate new avenues the company had not yet considered (team player); (3) I may be the solution to your mutual future corporate path by cross-training in the company’s various departments (less reliance on hiring temps and agency fees in the long run); and (4) I can be relied on (that should have some level of impact).
Meg McDonough www.LuxuryHospitalityConsult.com SRQHotelMgmt@aol.com

—————————————————————————————

Feel free to share an idea for a column at info@hoganhospitality.com anytime or contact me regarding consulting, customized workshops, speaking engagements … And remember – we all need a regular dose of common sense.

John Hogan is a successful hospitality executive, educator, author and consultant and is a frequent keynote speaker and seminar leader at many hospitality industry events.  He is Co-Founder of a consortium (www.HospitalityEducators.com) of successful corporate and academic professionals delivering focused and affordable counsel in solving specific challenges facing hospitality today.

www.HospitalityEducators.com is a membership site offering a wide range of information, forms, best practices and ideas designed to help individual hoteliers and hospitality businesses improve their market penetration, deliver service excellence and increase their profitability. Individuals wishing to contribute materials may send them to  Kathleen@HospitalityEducators.com. Special pricing is in effect for a limited time that also includes a complimentary copy of LESSONS FROM THE FIELD- A COMMON SENSE APPROACH TO EFFECTIVE HOTEL SALES.

Consulting Expertise and Research Interest

  1. Sales Management and training
  2. Turn-around and revenue management
  3. Professional Development for the Organization and the Individual
  4. Customer Service
  5. Making Cultural Diversity Real
  6. Developing Academic Hospitality programs
  7. Medical Lodging Consulting

If you need assistance in any of these areas or simply an independent review or opinion on a hospitality challenge, contact me directly for a prompt response and very personalized attention.

www.HoganHospitality.com

Your Hospitality Resource for the Hotel Owner, Innkeeper, Manager and Hospitality Industry Associations

http://www.linkedin.com/in/drjohnhoganchache

CONTACT

Dr. John Hogan, CHE CHA CMHS

United States – Phoenix, Phone: 602-799-5375

www.hoganhospitality.com/ Email: info@hoganhospitality.com

An unusual holi-day that recognizes hospitality and all family businesses – March 29 – “National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day”

“National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day”

An unusual holiday that recognizes hospitality and all family businesses

When : Always March 29th

The hospitality business has always been an industry that has embraced and cultivated family business values and structures.  There are many success stories in hotels, restaurants, spas, pubs and other related businesses that are now in the 2nd, 3rd and sometimes 4th generations.

National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day celebrates small business owners. These individuals spend countless hours nurturing and growing their young enterprises. The workload demands (and the occasional lack of a hired staff) often translates into long and late hours, and many missed family and personal events. But, all in all, they love what they do and they have the appreciation of being “their own boss.”

Family businesses have always been a vital, yet not fully appreciated, part of every  economy in the world. On they retail side, they bring different and unique products to the marketplace and provide personal service support. In hospitality, it is often the owner who is the chef, maitre’d or host in a family owned and operated restaurant.  In hotels, there may be many family members in a wide range of assignments all working to meet their personal and family goals.

When you call a family business, you are more likely to get a real, live person who is happy to talk to you.  They tend to know their products better than some branded properties, because they were involved in the design selection and talk with their customers and guests regularly. Many family owned and operated hospitality businesses are outstanding performers in niche markets and have evolved their offerings with personalized  concepts and ideas that please their guests.

Celebrate National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day by showing your support….shop their restaurants, hotels, clubs, spas and stores today, and everyday.

In Hospitality, remember the value of family businesses


Origin of “National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day”:

According to the son of the “mom and pop” this day was created for:

” This holiday was created to honor the business that my parents started on 3/29/39 in Everett , MA —a hat shop called Ruth’s. It later developed into a woman’s specialty clothing store and moved to Medford , MA , increasing in size to 10,000 square feet with over $2 million dollars revenue until it closed in 1997.” Rick Segel, Poinciana, Florida USA

Feel free to share an idea for a column at info@hoganhospitality.com anytime or contact me regarding consulting, customized workshops, speaking engagements … And remember – we all need a regular dose of common sense.  John Hogan is a successful hospitality executive, educator, author and consultant and is a frequent keynote speaker and seminar leader at many hospitality industry events.  He is Co-Founder of a consortium (www.HospitalityEducators.com) of successful corporate and academic professionals delivering focused and affordable counsel in solving specific challenges facing hospitality today.

www.HospitalityEducators.com is a membership site offering a wide range of information, forms, best practices and ideas designed to help individual hoteliers and hospitality businesses improve their market penetration, deliver service excellence and increase their profitability. Individuals wishing to contribute materials may send them to  Kathleen@HospitalityEducators.com. Special pricing is in effect for a limited time that also includes a complimentary copy of LESSONS FROM THE FIELD- A COMMON SENSE APPROACH TO EFFECTIVE HOTEL SALES.

Consulting Expertise and Research Interest

  1. Sales Management and training
  2. Turn-around and revenue management
  3. Professional Development for the Organization and the Individual
  4. Customer Service
  5. Making Cultural Diversity Real
  6. Developing Academic Hospitality programs
  7. Medical Lodging Consulting

If you need assistance in any of these areas or simply an independent review or opinion on a hospitality challenge, contact me directly for a prompt response and very personalized attention.

www.HoganHospitality.com

Your Hospitality Resource for the Hotel Owner, Innkeeper, Manager and Hospitality Industry Associations

http://www.linkedin.com/in/drjohnhoganchache

CONTACT

Dr. John Hogan, CHE CHA CMHS

United States – Phoenix, Phone: 602-799-5375

www.hoganhospitality.com/ Email: info@hoganhospitality.com

RECOMMENDED READING from HospitalityEducators.com – RUSSELL RULES

RECOMMENDED READING – RUSSELL RULES

Team, leadership and accountability

Sports have a certain effect on people everywhere in the world. This effect can include excitement and enjoyment when our team wins, and frustration and disappointment if the outcome is not what we hoped for. As the US University basketball championships are now being played for both men and women, it seemed like the right time to include this recommendation.

Bill Russell became a sports icon with reason. He is an original, with more championships than any other team player as evidenced by his recognition in being named the 20th century’s greatest team player by Sports Illustrated and HBO called him the greatest winner in the 20th century. He was the 1st African American to coach a professional sports team and won two championships as a player/coach without even an assistant coach. He won championships in the NCAA, the Olympics and an NBA championship â” all in the same year (1956).

The book, RUSSELL RULES is a collection of basketball and personal examples from Russell’s career. The balance between sports, business and personal integrity is clear, easy to follow and is genuinely interesting, whether one likes sports or not.

The 11 lessons address commitment, team decision processes, accountability, change, discipline, the need for the desire to win and a number of how-to business examples. These lessons include easy to follow messages on ego management, active listening, setting standards and meeting them, seeking and encouraging perfection, building mutual trust, positive control, using imagination to to enhance performance, leadership by establishing and reinforcing discipline, as well as earned delegation and finally, always looking for the win, whatever the odds.

Russell has not been an active part of the Celtics in recent years, but in a 2008 televised interview with the current center, Kevin Garnett, one could hear that his public words of counsel and planning reflected what must have been said in private between the two men of different generations. Russell expressed that he felt the current Celtic team could win two or three championships if they played as a team. Those exchanges were meaningful to me as part of team, leadership and accountability in every day examples of life.

____________________________________________________________________________

On a related note (after this book was written), in February of 2011, US President Barack Obama awarded Bill Russell with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the United States’ highest civilian award. This recognition is given to men and women who have “made an especially meritorious contribution to (1), the security or national interests of the United States, or (2) world peace, or (3) cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.” The White House issued the following statement regarding Russell’s honor.

Bill Russell is the former Boston Celtics’ Captain who almost single-handedly redefined the game of basketball.  Russell led the Celtics to a virtually unparalleled string of eleven championships in thirteen years and was named the NBA’s Most Valuable Player five times.  The first African American to coach in the NBA—indeed he was the first to coach a major sport at the professional level in the United States—Bill Russell is also an impassioned advocate of human rights.  He marched with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and has been a consistent advocate of equality.

The book epilogue has an outstanding message ” making CELTIC PRIDE work for you. I urge you to read this resource and enjoy!

As always, feedback or comments are welcome       
Dr. John Hogan CHA CHE
HoganHospitality
HospitalityEducators com
Feel free to share an idea anytime or contact me regarding consulting, customized workshops or speaking engagements


John Hogan is a successful hospitality executive, educator, author and consultant and is a frequent keynote speaker and seminar leader at many hospitality industry events.  He is Co-Founder of a consortium (www.HospitalityEducators.com) of successful corporate and academic professionals delivering focused and affordable counsel in solving specific challenges facing hospitality today.

www.HospitalityEducators.com is a membership site offering a wide range of information, forms, best practices and ideas designed to help individual hoteliers and hospitality businesses improve their market penetration, deliver service excellence and increase their profitability. Individuals wishing to contribute materials may send them to  Kathleen@HospitalityEducators.com. Special pricing is in effect for a limited time that also includes a complimentary copy of LESSONS FROM THE FIELD- A COMMON SENSE APPROACH TO EFFECTIVE HOTEL SALES.

Consulting Expertise and Research Interest

  1. Sales Management and training
  2. Turn-around and revenue management
  3. Professional Development for the Organization and the Individual
  4. Customer Service
  5. Making Cultural Diversity Real
  6. Developing Academic Hospitality programs
  7. Medical Lodging Consulting

If you need assistance in any of these areas or simply an independent review or opinion on a hospitality challenge, contact me directly for a prompt response and very personalized attention.

www.HoganHospitality.com

Your Hospitality Resource for the Hotel Owner, Innkeeper, Manager and Hospitality Industry Associations

http://www.linkedin.com/in/drjohnhoganchache

CONTACT

Dr. John Hogan, CHE CHA CMHS     United States – Phoenix, Phone: 602-799-5375

www.hoganhospitality.com/ Email: info@hoganhospitality.com

“The Stranger within our gates” : Observations from HospitalityEducators.com

Small cheer and great welcome makes a merry feast.
William Shakespeare (1564–1616), British dramatist, poet.  

Attributed to Balthazar, in The Comedy of Errors,
act 3, sc. 1, l. 26.

When one travels a great deal on business, the danger is there to overlook the small, personal touches that are often present in many hotels. Regardless of the room rate, the size of the hotel or its location, many hotels around the world provide many personalized welcoming messages.  At a time when we in the industry are concerned about the danger of our hotels becoming a commodity that is only rated or selected by price, those personal touches become even more vital to keeping our individual distinctions.

The following message was placed on a pillow on a trip I made several years ago. This laminated message really made its’ point to the well being of every guest and guest experience and I hope you enjoy the message.

To Our Guests :  “The Stranger within our gates”  

Because this hotel is a human institution to serve people, and not solely a for profit organization. We strive to ensure you will experience peace and rest while you are here.

May this room and this hotel be your “second” home. May those you love be near you in thoughts and dreams. Even though we may not get to know you, we hope that you will be conformable and happy as if you were In your own house.

May the business that brought you our way prosper. May every call you make and every message you receive add to your joy. When you leave, may your journey be safe.

We are all travelers. From “birth till death” we travel between the eternities. May these days be pleasant for you, profitable for society, helpful for those you meet, and a joy to those who know and love you best.


Think Tank

Questions of the day

These questions are offered to stimulate discussion about the way we do business.  There is not necessarily only one “correct” answer – the reason for this section of the column is to promote an awareness of how we might all improve our operations.  Consider using these or similar questions at staff meetings encourage your team to THINK!

Topic

  1. What would your guests think of this kind of message expressed at your hotel?
  2. What do you do at your hotel to make each guest feel welcome?
  3. Are there any additional suggestions you could share at your hotel or with readers of this column on how to reduce the potential of our hotels becoming commodities?

—————————————————————————————————-

Feel free to share an idea for a column at info@hoganhospitality.com anytime or contact me regarding consulting, customized workshops, speaking engagements … And remember – we all need a regular dose of common sense.

John Hogan is a successful hospitality executive, educator, author and consultant and is a frequent keynote speaker and seminar leader at many hospitality industry events.  He is Co-Founder of a consortium (www.HospitalityEducators.com) of successful corporate and academic professionals delivering focused and affordable counsel in solving specific challenges facing hospitality today.

www.HospitalityEducators.com is a membership site offering a wide range of information, forms, best practices and ideas designed to help individual hoteliers and hospitality businesses improve their market penetration, deliver service excellence and increase their profitability. Individuals wishing to contribute materials may send them to  Kathleen@HospitalityEducators.com. Special pricing is in effect for a limited time that also includes a complimentary copy of LESSONS FROM THE FIELD- A COMMON SENSE APPROACH TO EFFECTIVE HOTEL SALES.

Consulting Expertise and Research Interest

  1. Sales Management and training
  2. Turn-around and revenue management
  3. Professional Development for the Organization and the Individual
  4. Customer Service
  5. Making Cultural Diversity Real
  6. Developing Academic Hospitality programs
  7. Medical Lodging Consulting

If you need assistance in any of these areas or simply an independent review or opinion on a hospitality challenge, contact me directly for a prompt response and very personalized attention.

www.HoganHospitality.com

Your Hospitality Resource for the Hotel Owner, Innkeeper, Manager and Hospitality Industry Associations

http://www.linkedin.com/in/drjohnhoganchache

CONTACT

Dr. John Hogan, CHE CHA CMHS

United States – Phoenix, Phone: 602-799-5375

www.hoganhospitality.com/ Email: info@hoganhospitality.com

Questions I Wish You Would Ask Me™ – Conor Kenny, Dublin, Ireland 3.17.11

Subject: RE: Questions I Wish You’d Ask Me™

In this article, we reached out to Conor Kenny who has been the Principal of Conor Kenny & Associates in Dublin Ireland since 2002.

Hi John, Happy New Year. Interesting initiative.

1. Name your favorite hotel and why it is special to you

The Merrion in Dublin, Ireland. Because it is in a beautiful part of town and the buildings are restored Town Houses. The staff work hard at minding their guests but deliver their unique brand of service in a friendly, real and ‘non manufactured’ way. They are led by a superb GM. They strive constantly to innovate, to excel and to be the best yet they never forget the basics of great service. It achieves that long lost and very unusual moment where – no matter who you are – they make you feel special. We are human beings and being made special is just about the most cost effective thing you can do but also the most difficult. The Merrion manages to – everyday.

2. Name your favorite restaurant and why it is special to you

Nico’s in Dublin. Almost as old as me. Same food, same menu, same decor and still serving brilliant food everyday.

3. Where do you vacation the most often?

Majorca, Spain.

4. What is your favorite charity or cause?

Anything to do with homeless people (there for the grace of God go all of us)

5. Name your pet service peeve, why and any ideas you may have to address it Disinterested, detached, unfocused, lethargic, argumentative, uninspiring, knowledgeless staff.

6. Who was the most important mentor in your life and why?

  • My Dad.
  • He listens well.
  • Has an incredible background of success.
  • He is usually right.
  • Then, my real friends. You know the type? Tell you what you don’t want to hear.

7. In the last five years, what has been your most memorable meeting or convention experience and why?

Last year. My own team.

They solved a puzzle way beyond me. Better still, they rebuilt a new brighter model that is working far better. Let them drive. If they crash kick ’em out. If they drive better than you – keep going.

8. What is the one piece of advice you would offer to a graduating student with a hospitality degree?

Do it for love or don’t do it at all.

9. What is the one question do you wish someone would ask you in an interview today?

Two.

  1. What are you bad at?
  2. What are you most proud of outside work?
Questions I Wish You Would Ask Me™  includes interviews such as those found in our HOSPITALITY CONVERSATIONS, and and it also allows industry professional the opportunity to share their perspectives, values and opinions on additional areas and subjects that may not have been part of the planned discussion. This segment includes a wide range of hospitality professionals from all portions of the industry. We ask participants to answer at least five of the listed nine questions. Their responses will interest, sometimes amuse and definitely inspire you to consider how YOU might answer.
If you would like to participate, please contact John.Hogan@hospitalityeducators.com.

Conor Kenny & Associates are experts in helping you get the most out of people and business. As skilled innovators in marketing, sales and communication, we know that you and your people have skills too. Companies don’t innovate. People do. http://www.conorkenny.com/

Appreciating Freedom of Information March 16th

Freedom of Information Day     When : Always March 16th

Freedom of Information Day celebrates and recognizes a valuable concept in American rights.

March 16th is the birth date of James Madison, the 4th president of the United States of America. James Madison is recognized as the “Father of the Constitution”, and the chief author of the “Bill of Rights”. Freedom of information and individual rights was very important to James Madison.

Did you Know? The Freedom of Information Act was passed into law in 1966. It opened up a wealth of information to American citizens. James Madison would be very pleased!

Information when used correctly can benefit everyone.   You are invited to look at the extensive range of additional learning material, best practices and resource information specifically focused at operational managers of hotels and restaurants at www.HospitalityEducators.com

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Feel free to share an idea for a column at info@hoganhospitality.com anytime or contact me regarding consulting, customized workshops, speaking engagements … And remember – we all need a regular dose of common sense.

John Hogan is a successful hospitality executive, educator, author and consultant and is a frequent keynote speaker and seminar leader at many hospitality industry events.  He is Co-Founder of a consortium (www.HospitalityEducators.com) of successful corporate and academic professionals delivering focused and affordable counsel in solving specific challenges facing hospitality today.

www.HospitalityEducators.com is a membership site offering a wide range of information, forms, best practices and ideas designed to help individual hoteliers and hospitality businesses improve their market penetration, deliver service excellence and increase their profitability. Individuals wishing to contribute materials may send them to  Kathleen@HospitalityEducators.com. Special pricing is in effect for a limited time that also includes a complimentary copy of LESSONS FROM THE FIELD- A COMMON SENSE APPROACH TO EFFECTIVE HOTEL SALES.

Consulting Expertise and Research Interest

  1. Sales Management and training
  2. Turn-around and revenue management
  3. Professional Development for the Organization and the Individual
  4. Customer Service
  5. Making Cultural Diversity Real
  6. Developing Academic Hospitality programs
  7. Medical Lodging Consulting

If you need assistance in any of these areas or simply an independent review or opinion on a hospitality challenge, contact me directly for a prompt response and very personalized attention.

www.HoganHospitality.com

Your Hospitality Resource for the Hotel Owner, Innkeeper, Manager and Hospitality Industry Associations

http://www.linkedin.com/in/drjohnhoganchache

CONTACT

Dr. John Hogan, CHE CHA CMHS

United States – Phoenix, Phone: 602-799-5375

www.hoganhospitality.com/ Email: info@hoganhospitality.com