Editorial Board   

Ms. Connolly

Zoe Connolly

Co-Founder & Managing Director, Hospitality Spotlight

Zoe Connolly is the co-founder and managing director for Hospitality Spotlight, a full service executive search firm for the hospitality and travel industries. For more than a decade, she’s pioneered innovative and proactive recruiting efforts, connecting the best talent with the best companies, across all levels of organizations.

In her career, Ms. Connolly has worked with a variety of companies, from startups to Fortune 500 firms. While her focus early in her career was in technology and linguistics, her passion for the travel industry was spawned from working with her husband to start a hospitality enterprise that included multiple food and beverage operations, as well as an online food ordering site.

Having recruited at all levels and for different industries, Ms. Connolly has learned to focus on the human connection and their passion for what they do. The search process is just as much about the candidate as it is about the employer. If a candidate and a client have made a connection, this will fuel and drive their passion for their everyday functions. This connection places an unconscious goal for the new employee to meet, the goal to make their employer happy. In turn the Employer will also work harder for the employee. This connection turns a job into a career and co-workers into an extension of friends/family.

Currently, through working with clients like Starwood, Viceroy and Pacifica Hotels, Hospitality Spotlight has emerged as one of the go-to firms for senior level talent in the hotel and travel technology space. A refreshing combination of an expansive network and brutal honesty continues to push Ms. Connolly and her clients, both companies and candidates into a bright spotlight.

Please visit www.hospitalityspotlight.com for more information.

Ms. Connolly can be contacted at 858-230-8501 or zoe@hospitalityspotlight.com

Coming up in April 2018...

Guest Service: Empowering People

Excellent customer service is vitally important in all businesses but it is especially important for hotels where customer service is the lifeblood of the business. Outstanding customer service is essential in creating new customers, retaining existing customers, and cultivating referrals for future customers. Employees who meet and exceed guest expectations are critical to a hotel's success, and it begins with the hiring process. It is imperative for HR personnel to screen for and hire people who inherently possess customer-friendly traits - empathy, warmth and conscientiousness - which allow them to serve guests naturally and authentically. Trait-based hiring means considering more than just a candidate's technical skills and background; it means looking for and selecting employees who naturally desire to take care of people, who derive satisfaction and pleasure from fulfilling guests' needs, and who don't consider customer service to be a chore. Without the presence of these specific traits and attributes, it is difficult for an employee to provide genuine hospitality. Once that kind of employee has been hired, it is necessary to empower them. Some forward-thinking hotels empower their employees to proactively fix customer problems without having to wait for management approval. This employee empowerment—the permission to be creative, and even having the authority to spend money on a customer's behalf - is a resourceful way to resolve guest problems quickly and efficiently. When management places their faith in an employee's good judgment, it inspires a sense of trust and provides a sense of higher purpose beyond a simple paycheck. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate and manage guest satisfaction in their operations.