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.

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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.

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 

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

KEYS TO SUCCESS – Observations on SERVICE # 41-55

 KEYS TO SUCCESS – Observations on SERVICE # 41-55

Over the last six months I shared the first 40  service quotes I often use in my columns and in many of my training presentations as well, in both the full programs and in breaks. I know they are effective, as I receive requests for copies from many participants following these sessions. The response was very positive and I am pleased to share the next group.

I believe that each of us has truly GREAT and original ideas at different times in our lives. We are likewise inspired by others at times by reading their books or sometimes a simple quote. Please send me your favorite quotes on SERVICE and I’ll include them in a future column     __________________________________________________

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HospitalityEducators.com is a training and information resource site to help you increase your Hotel’s revenue, market share and profitability.  With more than 700 pages of tips, guides, best practices, strategies, plans, budgets, videos and resources, HospitalityEducators.com is the number 1 website for independent hotel owners and managers.  This site can help you solve your problems now!      Read More 

Special Anniversary Pricing July 18-21

Code RFS35
Use The Reader Feedback Special for a 25% discount to regular membership      

Quotes that address the topic of SERVICE.

  1. It’s not whether you get knocked down, it is whether you get up.”        Vince Lombardi

  2. We never plan to fail,but we often fail to plan.

  3. ENERGY: Your personal energy is Precious. Use it Wisely.

  4. You don’t stop laughing because you grow old; You grow old because you stop laughing.

  5. Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal.”                Henry Ford

  6. Nobody is ever born great at anything. People learn and develop SKILLS.    SERVICE is a GIFT.

  7. The best answer to insults is Silence.”     Sarah Bernhardt

  8. Do the right thing. It will gratify some people and astonish the rest.”   Mark Twain

  9. Every really new idea looks crazy at first.”       Alfred North Whitehead

  10. The best Service in the world is not necessarily flawless,but it is always SINCERE.

  11. If you are going through hell, keep going.” Sir Winston Churchill

  12. When someone says they don’t mind, they mind.

  13. A sense of humor is the most powerful weapon against frustration.

  14. If you aren’t fired with enthusiasm,you’ll be fired with enthusiasm.”Vince Lombardi

  15. While you are making a living, don’t forget to Live.

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.

  • Dr. John Hogan, CHE CHA CMHS          United States – Phoenix, AZ

  • Phone: 602-799-5375 www.hoganhospitality.com/ Email: info@hoganhospitality.com.

Blog #100 : A Baker’s Dozen of Reflections – What our Guests Should Mean to Us | And a Competition!

A Baker’s Dozen of Reflections –

What our Guests Should Mean to Us | And a Competition!

Many of us have heard variations of the expressions below, but I have discovered that too few hospitality organizations really have made these sentiments part of their corporate culture of hospitality.

  1. Guests are the most essential people in our business. This does not lessen the role of our associates, but we are in hospitality to meet and exceed their needs.
  2. Guests are people, flesh and blood human beings with unique perspectives and preferences; they are not merely statistics to be measured.
  3. Guests bring us their wants; we have the opportunity to fulfill them.
  4. Guests do not depend on us, we depend on them.
  5. Guests never interrupt our work, they are our work.
  6. Guests do us a favor when they call; we don’t do them a favor by answering them.
  7. Guests are a central part of our business, not strangers who come to distract us.
  8. Guests are not to be argued with.
  9. Guests deserve courteous attention, as courtesy should be the heart of hospitality.
  10. Guests are lifeblood of this and every other hospitality business.
  11. Guests are who we are when we are not working; so let’s let treat them the way we want to be treated ourselves.
  12. Guests give each of us as individuals the opportunity to serve as hosts and to be involved in one of the world’s most wonderful businesses in whatever role we decide and find we are suited.
  13. I have left #13 to be completed by readers: Guests …………………………………….. ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

We will give a free one-month membership to www.HospitalityEducators.com for the best three responses submitted by May 25, 2011 to john.hogan@hospitalityeducators.com, as well as post them in a full-length KEYS TO SUCCESS column shortly after.

and in appreciation for our “guests” to HospitalityEducators.com site, we are offering a special BLOG rate of 25% off the annual rate BETWEEN NOW AND MAY 17TH. For less than the cost of a local phone call or postage stamp daily, you can access 600+ articles, forms, best practices and proven strategies to MAKE YOUR HOTEL MORE PROFITABLE NOW!!

USE THE PROMOTIONAL CODE

HEBLOG511

Sign Me Up!


KEYS TO SUCCESS is the umbrella title for our 2011 programs, hospitality services and columns. This year’s writings focus on a variety of topics for hotel owners, managers and professionalsincluding both my “HOW TO” articles, HOSPITALITY CONVERSATIONS™, Lessons from the Field™, Hotel Common Sense™ and Principles for Success

 

Dr. John Hogan, Minneapolis Marriott, “A Career Hotelier’s Insights on Optimizing Meeting Success”

 Feel free to share an idea for a column at john.hogan@hospitalityeducators.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 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. Professional Development for the Organization and the Individual
  2. Customer Service
  3. Making Cultural Diversity Real
  4. Developing Academic Hospitality programs
  5. Medical Lodging Consulting
  6. Sales Management and training
  7. Turn-around and revenue management

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™” – Don Farrell of Memphis, Tennessee, “Chief Cultivator at Fresh Revenues”

“Questions I Wish You Would Ask Me™” , a regular feature at HospitalityEducators.com, 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.

These questions were answered by Don Farrell of Memphis, Tennessee who calls himself the “Chief Cultivator at Fresh Revenues”         

Don Farrell

Don began his working career as a pot scrubber for Marriott Hotels and worked his way up through the operational ranks, settling on a career in the sales and marketing arena. He worked in major sales and marketing opportunities for Holiday Inns Inc and several leading hospitality management companies. He started Signature, Inc, in 1986 and was able to help lead that company into the largest and best sales and service training company in the world with 265 employees and licensees training in 45 countries. He sold Signature in 2007 to start Fresh Revenues.  In 2009, his first book Ethical Theft was published.

On a personal note, I have known Don Farrell for more than 15 years and found each of his professional efforts have been well thought out and innovative. He is highly energetic, creative and understands how to establish and maintain quality, which was evidenced by the long standing success of Signature.  John.Hogan@HospitalityEducators.com

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

The Windsor Court in New Orleans because it has beauty, benefits and hospitality you don’t see often enough.  I also like the SoHo Grand in NYC because of its urban cool feeling.    

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

Advertised as the oldest restaurant in America, the Union Oyster House in downtown Boston. Come dressed as you are, watch the bar back shuck dozens of raw oysters and then throw the shells into a hole in the floor….as you hear someone below shoveling them up to be hauled away later to be made into driveway material.  Then, sit down and fill your face with fresh seafood parts and pieces from a big trough called a seafood boulliabase (sp?) drinking an ice cold beer. What’s not to love about this?  You can almost feel the presence of the Colonials.    

3. Where do you vacation the most often?

 I don’t…..I work.

4. What is your favorite charity or cause?  

The homeless

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

I have lot’s….but let’s just start with when the experience usually starts for most guests:  the point when the guest calls up looking to make a reservation. The solution is to train and then reinforce your front line folks to deliver the experience guests are starving for.   

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

  • I am one of few who never had the ultimate role model/mentor.
  •  I came from the other side of the tracks where even in 4 star hotels I worked at I could see things being done wrong….and know they were wrong and vow to never do what they did in that respect. 
  •  Take all of these “errors of our ways” and put them in a big pile and you can learn a lot about what not to do. 
  •  I had role models who showed me firsthand how doing something wrong makes you pay.    

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

I have done many, but Bed and Breakfast meetings I have been to have been most impressive.  They have incredible passion….you are living with them so it comes naturally to them. 

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

  •   I hope you focused on revenue generation, how to develop a service and sales culture and sustainability of our resources. 
  • To me, to focus on these items in your studies and in practice will give you a leg up on getting a challenging and rewarding career. 
  • The hospitality world is sensational….there are so many different avenues you can pursue that are loads of fun….but be ready to pay your dues in getting there.   


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

I wish there would be more questions relative to developing a business’ greatest asset and it is their desired culture.

 Contact information:

Don Farrell          901-853-4885               http://www.linkedin.com/in/donfarrell

Email: don@freshrevenues.com

_____________________________________________________________________________

 We have asked dozens of people involved in hospitality businesses around the world to answer up to nine questions in this special section of HospitalityEducators.com.  If you would like to participate, please contact   John.Hogan@HospitalityEducators.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.

Dr. John Hogan CHA CHE Boston Dec 2010

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

Questions I Wish You Would Ask Me™ |Karl Ruether CHA, CFBE, International Hotelier

“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.

In this article, we contacted Karl Ruether CHA, CFBE , General Manager at Icicle Village Resort, located in the charming Bavarian themed village of Leavenworth, Washington State with accommodations at the Best Western Plus Icicle Inn or the Aspen Suites Condominiums and Icicle Village Resort Vacation Rentals. Karl opened the property as a single inn in the early 1990s. He has served as a Best Western Governor for more than 15 years.

Karl is an international hotelier with service in multiple countries. He shares his counsel and professionalism with many and has continued to evolve his hotel team’s and personal skills. He has always been committed to collaborating with others and during our years of interaction, he has consistently aimed at reaching excellence.

Karl Ruether, CHA CFBE

“Karl Ruether” <karl@icicleinn.com> http://www.iciclevillage.com/                                   Icicle Village Resort 800-961-0162

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

Sun Mountain Lodge in Washington State, the location is amazing with 360 degree views, relaxing (no TV) and the restaurant has great food and service.

3. Where do you vacation the most often?

I don’t have a regular spot but have been in Ixtapa Mexico now twice and really enjoy that area.
4. What is your favorite charity or cause?

I am a member of Rotary International and I belief in what they do worldwide, as well as their 4 way test which works really well in any situation.

Here it is

  1. Is it the truth?
  2. Is it Fair to all concerned?
  3. Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
  4. Will it be beneficial to all concerned?

Often times when faced with a difficult situation, I refer to this test and it has helped me make better decisions personally and professionally.

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

That is pretty easy – I do not like when employees and their personal affairs are more important than serving the customer right in front of them. The only way this can be addressed is by constant training and close supervision.

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

This is very difficult to answer because I was lucky enough to have more then one, but the one thing that stood out was “Leading by example”

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

For several years I was working with others to affect a change by making training a very important aspect of the companies’ business plan for success and now I can this coming to fruition.

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

I actually have two:

  1.  Seek out a respected Mentor and learn as much as possible from this person.
  2.   Always practice what you preach.

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

How are you and your family? Show a genuine interest in the prospective employee.

 ______________________________________________________________

We have asked dozens of people involved in hospitality businesses around the world to answer up to nine questions in this special section of HospitalityEducators.com.  If you would like to participate, please contact   John.Hogan@HospitalityEducators.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.

Dr. John Hogan, MeetingsQuest November 2010 Working with clients - Crowne Plaza O'Hare, Chicago

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

 

How does your hotel provide memorable customer service? (Part 2)

About five months ago, I wrote a column that highlighted one of the most memorable service codes ever offered in hospitality – the Statler Hotel Service Code.  I included the original wording (penned in 1916) and gave readers the opportunity to receive a training powerpoint I created that is an updated version of the Statler Service Code, using current terms and approaches.  This offer generated close to 100 requests from around the world, in all six continents and from hospitality businesses ranging from a small airline in Scandinavia to tour guide services in South Africa.  Hotels and management companies representing luxury to mid-range brands and independent hotel owners and managers shared their goals and (at times) frustrations with motivating their staff.

Following this column, I included  an illustration of what I meant by sharing a lunch experience at a national, mid-priced US restaurant chain with these observations:

  1. The hostess sincerely welcomed us
  2. We were offered several options on where we might prefer to sit
  3. We were given the name of our server and were encouraged to ask anyone on     staff for anything needed

A major point of distinction in this experience was at our departure and this remains a major point in Statler’s Service Code.   As we left the restaurant, at least three people on staff who were not part of our service team went out of their way to offer a sincere “thank you, please come again!” Their appreciation of our business had little to do with what we ordered or how much we spent.

Recently, we went to another brand of this same ownership group.  We were warmly welcomed and promptly seated.  The server was introduced and offered a sample of the wine of the day.  We liked the flavor and ordered two glasses.  Service was good (but not great) and the hostess sort of threw a corporate questionaire on the table as she walked by.

At the same time, our check indicated the cost of each glass of wine was higher than each of our lunch entrees – a bit of a surprise, as it was also higher than anything seen on the table menu as well.  I completed the questionaire, attached my business card and handed it to the host or manager as we left, making sure to make eye contact.

It has been two months now.  No communication from the restaurant and by the way, no return visits from us.

Hm…. should I have “complained”?

Or should someone from this very large chain taken the time to read what they clearly said they wanted – feedback?

I’d like to open the topic to readers of this short column:

How does your hotel provide memorable customer service?

How does your hospitality business team provide exceptional and memorable customer service?

Recent blog postings on memorable service standards have prompted high levels of reader interest.  I am reaching out to top hoteliers for examples of how to deliver exceptional service that builds customer loyalty. We all recognize the need to avoid being viewed as a commodity.

Please limit each submission or idea to a paragraph or less and send them no later than May 5, 2011.  I will share your responses with readers in a future column.  Thank you in advance!

Feedback or ideas for future pieces are welcome.  Contact me at info@HoganHospitality.com

www.HospitalityEducators.com

www.HoganHospitality.com

Service is global in nature!

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 mentors delivering focused and affordable counsel in solving specific challenges facing the hospitality industry. www.HospitalityEducators.com is a membership site offering 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.   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.  If readers would like to contribute to the site, please submit your material for consideration to Kathleen@hospitalityeducators.com.  We are interested in expanding our global networks and resources as we support our membership.