Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Papenhoff

Michaela Papenhoff

Managing Director, h2c

Michaela Papenhoff is Managing Director of h2c, a Germany-based company that specializes in hospitality commerce supporting hotel chains and large individual properties increasing success when selling online and offline. Building on 25 years of hospitality experience, Ms. Papenhoff early recognized the initial stage of electronic and Internet distribution and the great potential of global marketing. Prior to founding h2c 10 years ago, Ms. Papenhoff worked as Director of E-Distribution and E-Marketing at a leading European representation company with more than 200 member hotels. She implemented the company’s first central reservation system and was accountable for all properties’ revenues via electronic channels. Concurrently, she set up a CRS specialist’s team which trained all associated hotels, thus providing an on-demand knowledge pool. Ms. Papenhoff has worked in several functions prior to founding her own company including front desk, reservations, sales development and public relations at international hotels chains. Clients benefit from h2c’s expert team in the areas of distribution strategy development via international and national channels, implementing effective SEO/SEM strategy, training how to improve processes and technology, market research and business intelligence. In her beginnings with h2c, Ms. Papenhoff also served as PhoCusWright’s Inc. Managing Director Europe representing the company in this region, holding speeches during industry events and conducting high quality research. Today, h2c assists PhoCusWright in carrying out market research projects with a core focus on the European and Middle East countries. By completing her International Executive MBA at the Rotterdam School of Management/Erasmus University, Ms. Papenhoff could deepen her skills in marketing, finance, leadership development und change management; her industry insight initially began with a professional hospitality education program.

Ms. Papenhoff can be contacted at 49-211-239-8360 or papenhoff@h2c.de

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.