Published on March 10, 2014
TRICKS TO SUCCESS IN A HOTEL BUSINESS INTRODUCTION: The tips in this article would assist hotel managers and staff to provide quality service that will lead to increase patronage and success in the hotel business. Hotel business is a hospitality/ Customer service business, the relationship between the staff and the customers goes a long way to determine if the customer would come back or go somewhere else. A hotel is supposed to be a home away from home, but many staff doesn’t seem to treat their customers well. Smiling face of the staff would make a customer feel at home and feel free. If you know your hotel rooms are empty, these tips would be helpful in reviving/ boosting customers patronage of your hotel. Being visible in your hotel and making contact with your guests builds rapport and trust. Once you’ve gained this you’re in a far better position to gain valuable feedback first hand. The same goes for your staff too, so encourage them to talk to your guests. Give them the appropriate training to ask for feedback in the knowledge that they are confidence to deal with feedback – good or bad – in a positive way. Bear in mind your guests will tell you things that they wouldn’t feedback to your staff, and vice versa. 1. CUSTOMER SERVICE: Every hotel is established for the use of guest or customers; it must be comfortable and hospitable.
Good customer service is the best way to market your hotel than any other marketing strategy. The quality of service determines the rate of satisfaction a customer would derive. Once a customer is satisfied with the quality of service of your hotel, he will go nowhere else but your hotel and tell others about your hotel. The staff of your hotel must continue to see customers as the reason for the establishment of the hotel and treat them well in return. From the reception desk, to the kitchen, from the kitchen to the bar and also the Laundry, they must improve on their services and treat customers like a King. This will boost customer’s confidence on the hotel which will make them always come back and stay for longer period. 2. DO CONSTANT RENOVATION/ REPAIR/ CHANGE OF EQUIPMENT: A hotel that the telephone is not working well, the heater is not working in the bathroom; wireless not working, many switch/ socket gone badly would tend to lose customers. Constant renovation of equipment and even outright painting of the hotel is necessary because it would make the hotel beautiful and the beauty of the hotel would attract customers with class. Change of fuse/ socket as well as bad electronic materials in the hotel such as TV, telephone and fridge is very necessary; these are the things that make customers comfortable and happy. A researcher like me would not visit or go close to a hotel without a stable wireless in place. Do the right things and ensure everything is working and make your hotel the right place to go for a vacation or leave. 3. BE COMPETITIVE: There are hotels everywhere, so to keep your hotel alive you must be very competitive. As a manager of
a hotel, it is necessary to know other hotels around, their strength and weakness, their quality of service, their customer relationship. This study will assist you in improving in your own hotel service and make you a step ahead of others in the industry. Know the things they are not doing well and correct those things in your own hotel, know their marketing strategy, if it is better than yours then change your marketing strategy. These steady interactions with other hotels around could help you to structure your hotel well and make it very competitive. 4. CLEANLINESS OF THE HOTEL ENVIRONMENT: The environment of your hotel must be very neat. Everywhere should be sparkling. The bed spread/ pillow cases must be changed regularly, the toilet and the bathroom also should be washed by the cleaners. Dusting of everywhere in the room is also good. Moping of the floor of the hotel and sweeping of the outside is also very essential. Cleanliness is next to Godliness, ensure your hotel and its environment is very neat. 5. CHANGE OF STAFF UNWILLING TO LEARN: “Some staff take the light in saying sorry, I won’t try it next time” for you to pity and manage them, but you can’t manage someone at the expense of your business. The staff you have in your hotel can either build your hotel or kill it. Constant assessment of your staff Is necessary and the ones not competent should be corrected from time to time. 6. STUDY YOUR ENVIRONMENT AND KNOW WHAT SERVICE TO RENDER: The people in every environment have what they like depending on their culture. The location of your hotel should
determine the service to be rendered. Like your hotel Possi Hotel and Suites is situated in an Igbo dominated area of Lagos state. Your study should be: • The kind of food the Igbo’s eat • The kind of drinks they like • The kind of TV stations that make them happy etc. A hotel situation in VI, Festac, VGC and banana republic axis should expect more of Foreigners and should have in its stock foreign wines and should be competent in preparing Intercontinental dishes. 7. MARKETING YOUR HOTEL: There are different marketing strategies for hotels. But like I said earlier, the best way to market your hotel is good customer service, that is the only way to keep your guest coming back to spend longer time. Never talk back to a guest no matter your anger, the only response that can come from a staff is “I’m sorry sir/ ma”. Saying sorry won’t remove anything from you but will resolve any issue or anger of a guest in your hotel. Find below some marketing strategies that should be considered: • ORGANISE SHOWS OF DIFFERENT KINDS FROM TIME TO TIME: One benefit of organising these shows is that
it would make new people aware of your hotel. When crowd come for the show, of course more than 80% of the crowd will be new to your hotel and would always consider lodging someday or tell others about your hotel. • HAVE A GOOD MARKETING TEAM IN PLACE: The criteria for selecting a marketer depends solely on the environment of your hotel. Like the location of your hotel “Possi hotel and suites”, any marketer that should be employed must be proficient in English and Igbo, proficiency in Yoruba language is also an edge. Payment of the marketer should be based on commission (%) or the customers they attract to the hotel. Female is preferable to male as a marketer for a hotel business, she must be beautiful, intelligent and have a good sense of humor. She must know the places to go to get customers and know the right things to say. She must know everything about the hotel like: 1. All the food in the menu of the hotel 2. The classes of room the hotel has 3. She should be able to tell a customer that the hotel has a bar, a pool, restaurant and the comfort of the rooms in the hotel. 4. The beautiful condition of the hotel 5. The warm reception that await him when he comes
When a good marketing team is in place, the hotel will never lack guest in the rooms and that is always the target of hotel business owners. 8. HAVE AN UNINTERRUPTED POWER SUPPLY: It is never comfortable to pay your money and sleep in the dark. Many guest would prefer a hotel that has uninterrupted power supply to those that have epileptic power supply. Constant power supply is the one of the best comfort a guest can get, ensure your power is stable and make your hotel comfortable for guests to stay. This will help in advertising your hotel also. 9. ALWAYS REQUEST FEEDBACK FROM CUSTOMER: Customer feedback is known as the best way of improving on the state of service of every hotel. Customer’s opinion should be put into consideration. Customer should evaluate all the services of the hotel because this assessment if compiled properly and inculcated in the hotel culture, there will positive change that will lead to increase in patronage but it is not all the opinions of customers that should be considered. A customer can tell you, “he need harlots in the hotel for example” if it is against the policy of your hotel then don’t consider such a suggestion. Customers should be able to assess the following: • The food • The drinks
• The quality of service • The staff • The rate of comfort he/ she derives • The if he or she would love to come back These assessments would help the hotel improve in their service and staff would treat their guest well to avoid been sacked due to regular complains from guests. 10. HAVE A GOOD MANAGEMENT STYLE IN PLACE AND INCULCATE IN THE STAFF TEAM WORK, RESPECT AND LOVE FOR EACH OTHER: Team work can never be achieved without love and respect for each other. If you want your staff to put in their best to your organisation ensure there is love between them and mutual respect. In every organisation like hotels there are different level of management, like the top level, middle level, and low level managers. Every staff should treat his superior with respect. Working as a team helps to produce greater output than working in anger or with malicious mind. Every customer tends to be happy when they say the coordination of your staff and the quality of service they get. The best management style for hotels is the Management by walking around (MBWA). This management style is the best for hotels because of the numerous departments a hotel has. The managers/ supervisor should move from time to time to the
different departments to ensure they are carried out their duties accurately. This will give staff no chance to gossip or stay idle when there are jobs to be done. 11. MAKE SURE YOUR HOTEL IS SECURED: Guest in your hotel would like to sleep well with both eyes closed. Security agents should be in place in and around the hotel premises to boost customer’s confidence of the hotel, if not hoodlums would wake up one morning and visit the hotel to steal and do their mysterious activities. The hotel should also take Safety first, all safety ethics should be strictly abided to, to reduce the rate of any hazard that could be harmful to guest. Security of your hotel is key and helps to market your hotel also. 12. EVERY STAFF SHOULD HAVE A PERFORMANCE SCORE CARD: This score card method for staff would make them aware that the management is watching their back, this would make them put in their best so that they will be scored well. After scoring them, tell them ways they can improve on their service. Managers should be constructive in criticism; this will lead to an improvement in the quality of service. THE (LEAF) FORMULA WOULD BOOST MANAGERS RELATIONSHIP WITH CUSTOMER • Listen
Listen to the customer – they want to get it off their chest – You need to identify the problem, Show you’re listening – remember your body language and keep eye contact. Reflect back to the customer to check your understanding and show the customer you’ve understood. Park the emotion and focus on the facts • Empathise Apologise – this isn’t necessarily accepting responsibility, but apologising that they’ve been put out or disappointed or that they feel that way. Do not take it personally; show you care and that you understand their concern, why they might be disappointed or why they feel angry. They’re not interested in excuses – even if the problem wasn’t your fault show that you’re looking to come to a solution to the problem for your guest. • Action And ask what they would see as an acceptable solution Offer alternatives so the customer feels they are in control of the solution. Look to overcompensate by at least a few percent – there’s no need to go overboard but just consider what would be
reasonable for both parties – It’s not always about throwing money at the problem. Tell the customer what you are going to do and not why things went wrong (unless that’s what they ask) • Follow Up Keep your promise and deliver- Check that the customer is happy with the outcome. Learn from the feedback you’ve had and look into recurring trends – aim to prevent a similar complaint happening again. Pass on to your team so they know how to resolve similar situations in future with the right approach because complaints can turn a negative into positive. You can’t always get everything right, but when you don’t make sure you fix it immediately. MY PURPOSE OF THIS WRITE UP: I carried out this research for the success and growth of my uncle’s hotel business. I know the management of the hotel is doing excellently well but obviously some things need to be corrected and inculcated in the hotel organisational culture. This intellectual work done by me should please not be neglected or swept under the carpet. It should be inculcated into the organisational culture of the hotel; it is my prayer that this work brings about positive changes to my uncle’s hotel,
increase patronage, and increase in the competitive power of the hotel. SUGGESTIONS 1. Staff should be motivated to put in their best. 2. Customer’s feedback should be taken seriously. 3. Regular cleaning of the hotel and its environment is very necessary. 4. The moment it is made clear to staff that the reason for establishing the hotel is Customer satisfaction, they tend to respect and treat customers well. 5. Staff uniform/ clothes should always be clean and ironed. 6. Inflating bills of customers by staff should be highly prohibited. 7. A good marketing team should be in place to boost advertisement of the hotel. 8. Staff should be made to write report of their duties over a given period of time 9. Respect and team work should be encouraged among staff.
10. Gossiping should highly be prohibited among staff. 11. Staff suggestions on how to improve the quality of service/ patronage should be taken seriously and welcomed from time to time 12. A good safety plan should be on ground in case of unforeseen circumstances like fire outbreak or crisis. 13. Ensure the lives of guests is secured in your hotel 14. More research should be carried out on this topic. 15. GM please take note, the front desk, pool bar and main bar are not dressing completely, palm slippers is no longer allowed in this century for hotel staff. They should be putting on a cover shoe not palm slippers. I want to thank my parents sincerely from my heart for given me the best legacy any parent can give to their children which is EDUCATION. I love you dad and mum very much. GOD BLESS YOU FOR READING THROUGH THIS WORK, IJIEKHUAMHEN OSAZE PATRICK.
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