…Thought of the day…Revisited

I first shared this anecdote almost 7  years ago and its message about VALUE, INTEGRITY and PERSPECTIVES has become even more important with the allegations in elections, changes in global terrorism and the increasing tensions in many of our every day lives.   I am proud to be a hotelier, author, speaker and educator and I encourage readers to note the business and personal message that bears repeating and thinking about.

          Image result for $20 bill

A well-known speaker started off his seminar by holding up a $20.00 note. In the room of 200, he asked, “Who would like this $20 note?”

Hands started going up.  He said, “I am going to give this $20 to one of you but first, let me do this.

He proceeded to crumple up the $20 note.
He then asked, “Who still wants it?”

Still the hands were up in the air.
Well, he replied, “What if I do this?”

And he dropped it on the ground and started to grind it into the floor with his shoe. He picked it up, now crumpled and dirty.

Still the hands went into the air.

My friends,
we have all learned a very valuable lesson.

No matter what I did to the money, you still wanted it because it did not decrease in value. It was still worth $20.

Many times in our lives, we are dropped, crumpled, and ground into the dirt by the decisions we make and the circumstances that
come our way.

We feel as though we are worthless. But no matter what has happened or what will happen, you will never lose your value.

Dirty or clean, crumpled or finely  creased, you are still priceless to those who DO LOVE you.

The worth of our lives comes not in what we do or who we know,
but by WHO WE ARE. You are special- Don’t EVER forget it

” Pass this on, you may never know the lives it touches,
the hurting hearts it speaks to, or the hope that it can bring…….

Count your blessings, not your problems.

This has been attributed to a number of sources and while I do not know the original author, I thank her/him on behalf of the many people I have shared this message with in programs, classes and my writing.

John Hogan 10.16 no.6 John J. Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO[1] is a career hotelier, author and educator who has held senior leadership with responsibility in several organizations involving operational, academic and entrepreneurial enterprise. He has been affiliated in management roles with Sheraton, Hilton, Dunfey (now Omni), Park Suite (now Embassy Suites), Med Center Inns of America, Best Western world headquarters and independent properties. He taught as an adjunct professor for more than 20 years at 3 different colleges and conducted more than 5,000 classes and workshops in his career as of 2016.

He is Co-Founder and Chief Learning Officer of HospitalityEducators.com, which was founded in 2010 as a solutions center for hotel owners and managers.  HospitalityEducators.com completely updated and has been facilitating the Certified Hotel Owners program for AAHOA since 2012, with a participant approval rating of over 97% and more than 1400 certifications to date.

As the principal of Hogan Hospitality, he has provided litigation support, hotel expert witness services and hotel owner support services. He holds a number of industry certifications and is a past recipient of the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s Pearson Award for Excellence in Lodging Journalism, as well as operational and marketing awards from international brands. He has served as President of both city and state hotel associations and as an elected Chair of a major brand Hotel Owners Council.

Specific new services, workshops and keynote topics can be found at johnjhogan.com, including

  • WHAT THEY DON’T TEACH YOU AT HOTEL SCHOOL
  • IT’S THE SIZE OF YOUR IDEA, NOT THE SIZE OF YOUR BUDGET
  • 2017 HOT TOPICS ON SAFETY, SECURITY AND LEGAL ISSUES FACING HOTEL OWNERS AND MANAGERS THIS YEAR
  • 15 TIMELESS STRATEGIES FOR TODAY’S LEADERS

 

He is currently working with his partner Kathleen Hogan and others on several new projects including the HOTELIERMASTERMIND series, an eBook series with Howard Feiertag on hotel sales, two new web sites and a fresh set of Keynote and Workshop programs, hospitality services and columns.

He writes regular columns for a number of global online services, has published 500 columns and 225 blogs for industry publications. He co-authored (with Howard Feiertag, CHA CMP) LESSONS FROM THE FIELD – a COMMON SENSE APPROACH TO EFFECTIVE HOTEL SALES as well co-authoring the Supervisory Skill Builders from the Educational Institute. Hogan’s professional experience includes over 43 years in operations, service, sales & marketing, training, management development and asset management on both a single and multi-property basis.

He has supported numerous industry boards that deal with education and/or cultural diversity for more than 15 years. He served on the AH&LA Certification Commission of the Educational Institute and as brand liaison to the NAACP and AAHOA with his long term involvement in the Certified Hotel Owner program.

 

Contact: John Hogan John.Hogan@HospitalityEducators.com                 602-799-5375

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

 

[1] Certified Hotel Administrator (CHA), Certified Master Hotel Supplier (CMHS), Certified Hospitality Educator (CHE), Certified Hotel Owner (CHO)

 

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Hospitality Tip of the Week from HospitalityEducators.com

Crowne Plaza

A Providence RI hotel salutes its’ customers and staff in a special way.

(A special tribute to Southwest Airlines crew, which is known for their unique approaches to customer service)

How do you say THANK YOU to your best guests?

 

Success does not come by accident or chance.

Contact us for assistance.

Hospitality.jpg

Kathleen Hogan Ireland Sept 2013John J. Hogan CHA CHE CHO and Kathleen Hogan  MBA CHO are the  co-founders of  HospitalityEducators.com, which was created in 2010 to be a resource for hotel owners and professionals as they sought to improve market share, occupancy, operational efficiency and profitability.

The husband and wife team are transitioning the original membership site concept and evolving the business model today to a focused resource offering consulting, training, and individualized support to both hospitality and other service businesses.   Services include keynote addresses workshops, online support, metrics measurement, marketing and customer service from a group of more than a dozen experienced professionals.   While continuing to serve hospitality, the demand for these types of services is growing and can be personalized.

John Hogan is also the principal of HoganHospitality.com, which provides a range of expert professional services for hotel owners, including professional development for organizations, training, consulting and expert witness services.

John Hogan Sept 2013DSCN0215

Contact information:  Kathleen Hogan  480-436-0283,

John Hogan

602-799-5375 or service@hospitalityeducators.com

Workshops Available include: 

From the Chalkboard to the Front Line

What They Don’t Teach You at Hotel School

Focus:

  • Hotel Profitability
  • Hotel Sales
  • Marketing Ideas
  • Hotel Operations

There will always be an ongoing debate on the comparative merits of experience versus the knowledge acquired in formal educational settings.   The best lessons anyone can learn from hotel schools include an awareness of what really occurs on the front line in the actual hospitality setting.  This keynote transitions the academic message to the real world of running a profitable hospitality business.

 Click    here   for Keynotes and Workshops Available 

http://www.HoganHospitality.com
Your Hospitality Resource for Hotel Owners, Innkeepers, Managers and Associations

Hotel Common Sense – 7 Practical Steps on MBWA

Hotel Common Sense – 7 Practical Steps on MBWA

HOSPITALITY PRINCIPLES OF  SUCCESS

A previous article used one of Tom Peters and Robert Waterman’s fundamentals from their groundbreaking book on changing the ways we do business.   IN SEARCH OF EXCELLENCE introduced a formal name for what the more successful hospitality managers already knew about motivating their staff. The phrase “Management by Walking Around” was based on Hewlett-Packard’s commitment to their staff with interaction – not micromanagement, but ongoing listening and responding to staff ideas.

Hotel Common Sense – Philosophy #2 , Or, why the Open Door policy no longer works… article outlined how today’s workforce wants and needs to be considered as individuals who can contribute to the success of their organization.

Reader feedback showed the growing awareness to that need for additional management and leadership “active listening” and this follow-up message on MBWA offers some concrete ways to notch up that effort of positive involvement.

  1. Allow your staff to share complete stories and messages.  Many hospitality companies are trying to improve their customer care programs, yet how often do leaders and managers actually ask an hourly staff member to share a story about either an unhappy or very satisfied guest?  Listening to the entire story could provide best practices that might be substantially more effective and less expensive than hiring a consultant.
  2. Avoid the tendency to interrupt.   General Managers are results oriented people who are looking for the bottom line.   I know from personal experience the tendency to “hurry” people along is there, but allowing people to share the entire experience will encourage them to be more open.
  3. Remember eye contact in conversations.  One of my first mentors taught me a great deal about hospitality, but his habit of looking over my shoulder when we were talking always made me feel I was missing something. Give confidence to people with your eyes.
  4. Collect and communicate these stories of success (and failures). Sharing these stories (appropriately) at meetings of all staff, at training sessions, in newsletters and more provides an incentive to people to want to contribute because they have learned that you really do care.  I have seen some outstanding examples of “you tube” like testimonials from a number of hospitality companies of all sizes.
  5. Remember this is not a game of “one-up.” As General Managers, we have likely been in the business longer or heard more stories and it is important to recognize that we should not try to offer one “better” story than the one we are hearing. Remember, MBWA is about “active listening.”
  6. Credit the source.   When we add a new resource, form or best practice to our hospitality membership site, we obtain permission first and then always make certain we credit them fully.  Each of us has unique approaches, messages and talents and sharing the credit with our associates and guests is essential to moving forward.
  7. Build trust by honestly listening.  Some (correction, many) of the best suggestions I have ever heard as a manager or executive came from the people who are performing the job.  I learned more about laundry sorting, washing pots and up-selling from people who were proud to be successful at what they were doing.  Some of those suggestions needed clarification and some were not told as quickly as I might have preferred, but building teams means using all the team members’ strengths.

I normally update the Hospitality Tip of the Week, but as this is an immediate follow-up message, I am going to maintain it, as I believe the point needs to repeated until it becomes a habit.

Keys to Success Hospitality Tip of the Week:   Focus on MBWA

A challenge to every manager who is responsible for 5 or more people:  measure your in and out of the office time and at the end of the week, see how much time you spent ACTIVELY INTERACTING with your team.

The goal is 70% of your time out of the office – how did you do?   

              What will you do next week?

KEYS TO SUCCESS is the umbrella title for my speaking programs, hospitality services and columns. This year’s writings will focus on a wide variety of topics for hotel owners, managers and professionals including both my “HOW TO” articles and HOSPITALITY CONVERSATIONS. My segments Lessons from the Field, Hotel Common Sense and Principles for Success will be featured at appropriate times in the year as well.

Success does not come by accident or chance.

Contact us for assistance.

Hospitality.jpg

Kathleen Hogan Ireland Sept 2013John J. Hogan CHA CHE CHO and Kathleen Hogan  MBA CHO are the  co-founders of  HospitalityEducators.com, which was created in 2010 to be a resource for hotel owners and professionals as they sought to improve market share, occupancy, operational efficiency and profitability.

The husband and wife team are transitioning the original membership site concept and evolving the business model today to a focused resource offering consulting, training, and individualized support to both hospitality and other service businesses.   Services include keynote addresses workshops, online support, metrics measurement, marketing and customer service from a group of more than a dozen experienced professionals.   While continuing to serve hospitality, the demand for these types of services is growing and can be personalized.

John Hogan is also the principal of HoganHospitality.com, which provides a range of expert professional services for hotel owners, including professional development for organizations, training, consulting and expert witness services.

John Hogan Sept 2013DSCN0215

Contact information:  Kathleen Hogan  480-436-0283,

John Hogan

602-799-5375 or service@hospitalityeducators.com

Workshops Available include: 

From the Chalkboard to the Front Line

What They Don’t Teach You at Hotel School

Focus:

  • Hotel Profitability
  • Hotel Sales
  • Marketing Ideas
  • Hotel Operations

There will always be an ongoing debate on the comparative merits of experience versus the knowledge acquired in formal educational settings.   The best lessons anyone can learn from hotel schools include an awareness of what really occurs on the front line in the actual hospitality setting.  This keynote transitions the academic message to the real world of running a profitable hospitality business.

Click    here   for Keynotes and Workshops Available 

Hotel Common Sense – Philosophy #2

HOSPITALITY PRINCIPLES of SUCCESS

Hotel Common Sense –  Philosophy #2

Or, why the Open Door policy no longer works…

Anyone who is familiar with my full-length columns or shorter blogs knows that I  am a fan of Tom Peters.  There was a period when he may have believed his own PR press a bit too much in the mid 1990s, but I have found his messages to be thought provoking with sound counsel that we need to evolve and change or we will not be around much longer.

Peters, in his first major book with co-author Bob Waterman, took the theme of one of the world’s leading computer companies, Hewlett-Packard, and expanded the notion of truly reaching out to the people in our organizations who are responsible for the bulk of customer contact and building customer loyalty.  They challenged us to look at the symbol of the open door, which has ceased to be a meaningful statement.

The Open Door used to mean an associate (better word for employee) could come to us and ask for help in resolving problems with overtime, schedules, a day off or other personal matters.  I maintain that the Open Door policy, once the symbol of the manager or leader who really cared about their staff, is just not effective any more. The reason I state this is I feel we must realize that the hospitality industry has embraced social media and immediate communication exists among our staff as well as our guests.

While the above situations of personal matters still exist, the reality of today’s hectic pace is frequently more complicated. Drugs/alcohol abuse, sexual harassment, extended families and other more complicated issues are realities of today. While some of us might naively prefer to think there are not serious problems in the workplace today, we need only to look online at the latest “headlines” to see the truth.

The hospitality industry is certainly not immune to the pressures of today’s realities. This industry has ample temptations (bedrooms, alcohol, cash, and “power”) and the added stress of long hours and the pressure to be profitable in periods of diminishing returns can be a manager’s nightmare.

Is there a solution?

Consider the OPEN FLOOR contrasted with the OPEN DOOR.  I am not trying to use a simple play on words, but rather I am focusing on the fact that we cannot rely on our “good intentions” of the open door to be really in touch with our staff.  There will always be some people who seek us out as managers, but the truth is we must take to the OPEN FLOOR every day, beginning today as we read this.  By this, I mean setting our priorities on what most of us say and consider to be our most important asset: our staff. The OPEN FLOOR means something as basic as managers and department heads warmly greeting each member of the staff each shift. It means being in the  kitchen, the laundry, the receiving dock, the security patrol, with the sales team on calls and in the parking lot each day with the people whose livelihood takes place in those areas.

Paperwork, reports and online promotions have their place and need to be addressed and submitted on time. Some of it can be (and should be) delegated like many Embassy Suites try to do with their assistant general managers.  All reports should be periodically reviewed to see if they are still useful (to anyone) or if they have become just busywork.

Howard Feiertag, my friend and co-author of LESSONS FROM THE FIELD, once shared his observations of a downtown New York City hotel.  He commented how EVERYONE (general manager, front desk, bell staff, concierge, F&B, etc.) shook hands with their fellow workers and colleagues when they first saw each other daily.

Like they were “friends.”

Imagine that, and in New York City.

I need  to call Howard and ask him if he knows if they still do this.

MBWA – Management by Walking Around – try it!

Hotel Common Sense Philosophy #2 = Learn to listen more, talk less. Management by Walking Around is Priority #1.

Keys to Success Hospitality Tip of the Week:   Focus on MBWA

A challenge to every manager who is responsible for 5 or more people:  measure your in and out of the office time and at the end of the week, see how much time you spent ACTIVELY INTERACTING with your team.

The goal is 70% of your time out of the office – how did you do?

What will you do next week?

Recommended Reading/Viewing from John J Hogan|Stories Of The Women and Men Lost On September 11

By John Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO
September 10, 2015

2001-2015 = 14 years of memories, lessons learned and values appreciated

9-11 marked the first time the USA had been successfully attacked on its own soil in an undeclared war by terrorists and it changed the country forever in many ways. Innocent civilians of all religions, professions, ages and activities were affected in ways not imagined before.

I was with a  major hotel company on that day and my team and I were delivering a workshop out of state. The 100% closing of all airports nationwide, of some roads, and of many government and business centers was an eerie sensation for the week that followed.

In the years since that day, on those times when I am interacting with groups and others on September 11th, I make sure we take that moment of silence to remember and reflect.

I encourage you to watch the following You Tube and then read the short recap of real people’s lives that follow.

When the World Stopped Turning: A 9/11 tribute

Remember and Reflect

While this blog first was published last year,  the lessons we learned from each other and about inner strengths are worth another look.

American Lives: The Stories Of The Men And Women Lost On September 11

I have had this book for several years now – I found it at a used book sale. I almost passed it by, but was genuinely moved by the collection of personal stories complied by the staff of Newsday and the Tribune Company.   If you choose to pass on the book, I understand – it is not easy to keep returning to such a memory, but I strongly recommend you read the brief collection of thoughts below.

This is a mini-biography of some of the women and men who lost their lives on that day.  Some of what really moved me were the titles in the stories.  You will understand without even reading the full story:

  • Robert, there’s another plane coming
  • Dad, I gotta go. There’s smoke in here now
  • Take care of my kids
  • She still lives in his dreams
  • She opened up his world
  • A recovered ring completes a circle of life
  • He made every day a party
  • That day, she learned she was pregnant
  • After 20 years, they still held hands
  • A hero by any definition
  • He ignored his own order to flee
  • Firefighting was all he talked about
  • He dreamed of a school for autistic kids
  • She beat Hodgkin’s and eased others pains
  • Her family’s first college graduate
  • Death in a place of prayer
  • They knew what was important
  • She kept going back in
  • A rescuer who wouldn’t be stopped
  • A coach who brought out kid’s potential
  • Her husband watched her disappear
  • She tried to block the cockpit
  • The man who said “let’s roll”
  • He stayed to check on an elderly colleague
  • A cool army vet who helped others evacuate
  • He saved his wife, but not himself
  • A son is born as a father is mourned
  • and probably 200 more headings and stories

The book is only 200 pages in a slightly oversize format.  The five sections are to the point:

Little Brother, You’re MVP in our hearts, and as sub-sections includes
1. last phone calls
2. love stories
3. FDNY and
4. lost promises

The first into heaven
5. they died together
6. rescuers
7. mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers
8. on the planes

A Husband is Missing No More
9. High Finance
10. New Americans
11. In the Pentagon

A Man of Unusual Disposition
12. free spirits
13. tower people
14. legacies

The List of the Lost
World Trade Center Occupants
Pentagon
Emergency/Rescue Personnel
American Airline Flight #11 -WTC North Tower
United Airliners Flight #175 -WTC South Tower
American Airlines Flight # 77 – Pentagon
United Airlines Flight #93 – Pennsylvania

HospitalityEducators.com was created to help hospitality businesses address problems via a training and information resource site to help you increase your Hotel’s revenue, market share and profitability.   This site can help you solve your problems now!      Read More 

  Success does not come by accident or chance.

Contact us for assistance – John.Hogan@HospitalityEducators.com or 602-799-5375

Ten ways to reach 5,000+ potential customers for under $500| HospitalityEducators.com Tip of the Week

Over the last several years, I have shared ideas in columns that have  addressed the guest experience and delivering service.  These columns have generated a high level of reader interest and a future article will recap of some of their comments on impressions of service levels, customer expectations and service codes.

An underlying theme in these columns is the ongoing need for all of us to retain the “high touch” personality that is the heart in hospitality.  Technology is an important ingredient in the guest experience, but it is not the reason guests list when sharing why they make the decision to return to a hotel or to demonstrate loyalty.

Time for reflection

If you think back on your career, a major step was when you were entitled to your first business card.  That “entitlement” was sort of a rite of passage – a sign of having “made it.”  Chances are that you gave that card to as many people as you could – at least for a while.  As time wore on, you did not have to re-print as many as the first year.  Other things took priority. Technology took more of our time and communication focus.

Many successful people continue to re-order their cards regularly, as they find that business cards are one of the most under-utilized sales tools in the hospitality industry by many people.

Today, successful hoteliers, sales managers, general managers and owners value this low-cost, easy-to-carry, easy-to distribute sales piece as one of their most valuable tools. Prior to the late 1990s, most business cards were fairly basic – name, title, company name and address, phone number and perhaps the company slogan or motto.  Today’s cards contain much more information

  • the above basics
  • proper brand identity if you belong to a referral group or franchise
  • email and web-site address
  • social media information
  • cell or home number if you have the kind of position or personality that is service sensitive enough to warrant the kind of commitments that tell existing and POTENTIAL customers that you care MORE than your competition.  (Yes, I have a bias here regarding service.)

Today’s cards may be a dual or a tri-fold in design, listing

  • your property’s facilities in some detail, such as number and types of accommodations
  • banquet or meeting capacity
  • special services, such as saunas or spas, casinos or recreational facilities
  • amenities such as managers’ receptions or continental breakfast

Some include detailed maps from nearby interstate highways and others feature four-color photographs of the hotel or perhaps the view from the hotel’s front door.  The decision is yours on content, but your local printer, hotel association or franchise director can give you a wealth of options that have been successful for others.

After the cards are printed, what is next? The next is the fun AND critical part of using them effectively: distribution.

Following are some ideas we have seen used at hotels throughout the world:

  1. As an introduction to almost everyone you meet for the first time  – one never knows when they might need lodging/meeting/food services in your area
  2. In all correspondence – even with technology, everyone has some kind of card case or the option to paste the info into their computer from your card
  3. In all billing – a thank you on the back of your card can have great goodwill!
  4. In all payments – your suppliers also need edging/meeting/food services in your area at some point. We must all learn to regularly ASK FOR THE SALE!
  5. At all industry and business meetings – we all need to network
  6. In your restaurant – if you meet and greet guests (as either the GM, sales manager or restaurant manager). Let them know you care about them
  7. At check-in/out – A rack at the desk works for some hotels, but a sales manager or GM personally thanking EXISTING guests at checkout and asking them to return impresses many travelers.  Giving business cards is a reminder of the experience that they might relate to others back home. This is great referral potential and a way to build guest loyalty.
  8. For complimentary or discounting purposes when appropriate
  9. With all sales and marketing promotional pieces – put a name with the hotel and finally
  10. As a thank-you; a personal note is just that – a time taking, individualized sign of appreciation.

Business cards today can cost as little as five cents each.  Giving 20 out per business day equals roughly 100 per week, 450 per month and 5,400 per year. Can you think of any other personally delivered message that exists for under $500 a year?

              “In sales, you must make the customer remember you”                                            Victor Kiam, former owner, New England Patriots,  Former CEO, Remington Shavers

Keys to Success Hospitality Tip of the Week:

Focus on Operations & Profitability Recognize that supporting and offering English as a 2nd Language is an investment, not an expense for many areas in the hotel. It helps everyone to improve communication, to feel more involved and that the person learning English is cared about as an individual by the employer.

Feel free to share an idea for a column at  John@hoganhospitality.com anytime or contact me regarding consulting, customized workshops, speaking engagements …………. And remember – we all need a regular dose of common sense.  602-799-5375 

As Co-Founder of a consortium (www.HospitalityEducators.com) of successful corporate and academic mentors delivering focused and affordable counsel in solving specific challenges facing the hospitality industry, I invite readers to visit our site that offers a wide range of information, forms, best practices and ideas that are designed to help individual hoteliers and hospitality businesses improve their market penetration, deliver service excellence and increase their profitability.

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 Hotel Owners, Innkeepers, Managers and Associations

How to Use Hospitality Consultants Effectively

My greatest strength as a consultant is to be ignorant and ask a few questions”
Peter F. Drucker, (1909- 2005) American Educator and Author

While Peter Drucker was not specifically a hospitality consultant, his contributions to both the “people and the process “components of business consulting are enormous and lasting, as evidenced by his significant works and books.

In a  column  I wrote several years ago, I shared a number of observations I made while I was conducting a multi-city series of programs on optimizing meetings success for Meetings Quest , when it was owned and managed by co-founder Barbara Cox-Dunn. http://www.meetingsquest.com/ . Today it is owned and managed by  Schneider Publishing

The observations I shared were about the stimulating and interactive discussions held on ways to optimize meeting success from various perspectives of professional meeting planners and hotels. Almost 50% of the time for the program was committed to small group discussions on problems facing all of these professionals in the same industry, but that have slightly different roles and responsibilities. Attendees comprise professional meeting planners from corporations and associations of every size, hotel managers and sales teams, representatives from convention and visitors’ bureaus, suppliers that serve all of the previous groups and independent professionals in the hospitality business.

I wrote the column, titled “5 Reasons Using A Qualified Consultant Could Make a Huge Difference in Your Hospitality Business” because there was such extensive cross-fertilizing of ideas and solutions among participants in the discussions mentioned above.

I also received a number of emails on the column, including this one: “ Having been both an exec using advice from consultants and now a consultant myself, I can only fully subscribe John Hogan’s comments and five reasons for a (good and qualified) consultant. I would like to add a sixth reason: The consultant is not emotionally involved and can thus provide very objective reasoning for a specific business situation.  John F. Edmaier CMM.”

Comments from other readers and attendees at the above-mentioned sessions generally complimented the potential value of consultants, but there was also caution sheared that consultants could also be a source of negativity if not used properly and effectively, as evidenced in this tongue in cheek “motivational message” from http://www.despair.com.

Consulting
.
This message paints the negative image of consulting, as that of people who “hang around until” it may be too late. When a project nears completion, new troubles seem to inexplicably appear. Those challenges could be in staffing, communication, technology, equipment or distribution of global reservations. Each challenge extends the consultant’s assignment and before you know it, the financial and time costs for the consultant’s services affect your income statement in an unexpected way.

To avoid this danger, I offer the following : Five Considerations in Hiring a Hospitality Consultant.

I don’t believe in just ordering people to do things. You have to sort of grab an oar and row with them.”   Harold S. Geneen, American Executive and CEO (1959-1977) of ITT, then parent company of Sheraton Hotels

I was a management trainee at the 1500 room Sheraton Boston Hotel near the end of Geneen’s affiliation with Sheraton. He was known as a taskmaster, but he also had the reputation for involvement with identifying problems and solutions.

1. Involve key staff. Staff buy in is critical when deciding to engage the services of a consultant The danger of failure grows enormously unless key associates are involved in the decision making process of hiring a consultant. I have seen organizations that did not take this proactive approach, and the resentment or negativity can torpedo the project before it really begins.

2. Set specific and clear expectations. Responding to RFPs and making effective presentations is one thing, but those proposals may not include measurable outcomes or results. Expectations should have clear and defined deliverables, including time and expense details.

3. Establish Accountability for each phase of a consultant’s time and interaction. Consultants may research, discuss and seek to get buy-in on solutions, but they cannot execute the final plan for an organization. It is therefore essential to identify those steps and actions the consultant is responsible and accountable for.

4. Define levels of authority. A consultant according to Drucker’s quote is one who asks questions and then shares counsel. Hospitality businesses, hotels and restaurants can receive exceptional counsel from consultants, but one should not allow them to run your hospitality business unless that was part of the expectations and accountability mentioned above. They probably do not know your hospitality business as well as or better than you do. They may have recommendations that can help you and your team, but senior management and/or ownership should stay involved in the process if you retain a consultant.

5. Match your needs with the specific consultant for your assignment. By this, I mean to be certain you retain the correct individual, as well as company (if applicable). Someone with exceptional credentials as a chef may not be able to design your dining room layout. Success as a sales manager in select markets may not translate into global marketing planning. Running accounting department receivables does not mean the same thing as effectively managing cash flow in tough economic times. If applicable, you might ask questions such as:

  •  What were the largest revenues they personally oversaw?
  •  how many people were on their staff?
  •  What was the turnover rate?
  •  Were they ever entrepreneurs who had to meet their own payroll?
  •  Did they ever have to pay their own business and property taxes, or did they rely on others?
  •  Other questions unique to your situation

There are advantages to both specialists and generalists in consultants, attorneys, doctors and other professionals. We are probably familiar with the expression to “walk the talk”. For purposes of this discussion, this means having personally handled similar challenges facing your hospitality business. My personal experience in retaining or serving as a consultant is to understand and match situations on a case by case situation.

Most consultants have some hospitality industry background but may have never owned their own business. They may have never owned or sold their own hospitality business prior to becoming consultants and do not understand the stress and pressures of operating a family owned business, as are so many hospitality businesses.

Consultants can be excellent resources. Use them effectively, by choosing wisely.

Keys to Success Hospitality Tip of the Week: Focus on Continuous Learning
Hotel Common Sense Philosophy #11 “DARE TO FAIL!”
John J. Hogan, CHA CHE CMHS CHO

part of the 15 Timeless Philosophies In Hospitality, A Keynote Address and Workshop

KEYS TO SUCCESS is the umbrella title for my current programs, hospitality services and columns. This year’s writings will focus on a wide variety of topics for hotel owners, managers and professionals including both my “HOW TO” articles and HOSPITALITY CONVERSATIONS. My segments Lessons from the Field, Hotel Common Sense and Principles for Success will be featured at appropriate times in the year as well.

Success does not come by accident or chance.

Contact us for assistance.

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Kathleen Hogan Ireland Sept 2013John J. Hogan CHA CHE CHO and Kathleen Hogan  MBA CHO are the  co-founders of  HospitalityEducators.com, which was created in 2010 to be a resource for hotel owners and professionals as they sought to improve market share, occupancy, operational efficiency and profitability.

The husband and wife team are transitioning the original membership site concept and evolving the business model today to a focused resource offering consulting, training, and individualized support to both hospitality and other service businesses.   Services include keynote addresses workshops, online support, metrics measurement, marketing and customer service from a group of more than a dozen experienced professionals.   While continuing to serve hospitality, the demand for these types of services is growing and can be personalized.

John Hogan is also the principal of HoganHospitality.com, which provides a range of expert professional services for hotel owners, including professional development for organizations, training, consulting and expert witness services.

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Contact information:  Kathleen Hogan  480-436-0283,

John Hogan

602-799-5375 or service@hospitalityeducators.com

Workshops Available include: 

From the Chalkboard to the Front Line

What They Don’t Teach You at Hotel School

Focus:

  • Hotel Profitability
  • Hotel Sales
  • Marketing Ideas
  • Hotel Operations

There will always be an ongoing debate on the comparative merits of experience versus the knowledge acquired in formal educational settings.   The best lessons anyone can learn from hotel schools include an awareness of what really occurs on the front line in the actual hospitality setting.  This keynote transitions the academic message to the real world of running a profitable hospitality business.

 Click    here   for Keynotes and Workshops Available 

http://www.HoganHospitality.com
Your Hospitality Resource for Hotel Owners, Innkeepers, Managers and Associations

Pete Drucker Books

Prepared by the Office of Marketing & Communications at Claremont Graduate University 165 E. Tenth St., Claremont, Calif. 91711 909-621-8028

 The End of Economic Man – 1939
 The Future of Industrial Man – 1942
 Concept of the Corporation – 1946
 The New Society – 1950
 The Practice of Management – 1954
 America’s Next Twenty Years – 1957
 Landmarks of Tomorrow – 1957
 Managing for Results – 1964
 The Effective Executive – 1966
 The Age of Discontinuity – 1968
 Technology, Management and Society – 1970
 Men, Ideas and Politics – 1971Management: Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices – 1973
 The Unseen Revolution – 1976 (reissued in 1996 as The Pension Fund Revolution)
 People and Performance: The Best of Peter Drucker on Management – 1977
 An Introductory View of Management – 1977
 Adventures of a Bystander – 1978 (autobiography)
 Song of the Brush: Japanese Painting from the Sanso Collection – 1979
 Managing in Turbulent Times – 1980
 Toward the Next Economics and Other Essays – 1981
 The Changing World of the Executive – 1982
 The Last of All Possible Worlds – 1982 (novel)
 The Temptation to Do Good – 1984 (novel)
 Innovation and Entrepreneurship – 1985
 Frontiers of Management – 1986
 The New Realities: in Government and Politics, in Economics and Business, in Society and World View – 1989
 Managing the Nonprofit Organization: Principles and Practices – 1990
 Managing for the Future – 1992
 The Ecological Vision – 1993Post-Capitalist Society – 1993
Managing in a Time of Great Change – 1995
 Drucker on Asia: A Dialogue between Peter Drucker and Isao Nakauchi –1997
 Peter Drucker on the Profession of Management – 1998
 Management Challenges for the 21st Century – 1999
 The Essential Drucker – 2001
 Managing in the Next Society – 2002
 A Functioning Society – 2002
 The Daily Drucker – 2004
 The Effective Executive In Action – 2006