Identifying Four Elements That Make An Amazing Hire

By Zoe Connolly Co-Founder & Managing Director, Hospitality Spotlight | August 02, 2015

As readers of HotelExecutive.com know, finding the right people to fill leadership roles in their company or facilities can provide a challenge. For hospitality companies that aren't using a recruiter to fill key roles, the following are four traits that can help hotel leaders identify the right people, along with suggested interview questions that might help to identify whether these traits are present in a candidate. After all, some people can ace an interview, but may not ultimately be a fit. Using the approach below should help you build a management team that functions efficiently, limits turnover, and most importantly, keeps guests coming back for more.

Customer Service

A dedication to customer service is an obvious place to start when looking for your next hire. Even at the top levels of an organization, dedication to the customer must come first, especially in the hospitality space.

When they were building their newest hotel in Chicago, Virgin hotels replaced all of the typical buttons of a phone (reservations, room service, etc) with one simple button, labeled 'Yes'. The same author who wrote the story about 'the yes button' also tells a great story about a local Inn that saved a couple's romantic getaway that highlights the way customers at hotels should be treated.

Identifying which candidates say they're dedicated to customer service, and those who really are dedicated to customer service can be a challenge. To separate the wheat from the chaff, hiring managers can incorporate a few specific insights into the interview process.

  • When asking a candidate to identify an experience where they provided customer service that went above and beyond, be certain to make sure the candidate knows or remembers the customer's names. Someone who really made a customer's day will likely remember that person's name (or some other characteristics). By asking for details about a story, a hiring manager can better identify people for whom customer service really matters.

Coming up in January 2018...

Mobile Technology: Relentless Innovation

Technology has become a crucial component in attracting and retaining hotel guests, and the need to enhance a guest’s technology experience is driving a relentless pace of innovation. To meet and exceed guest expectations, 54% of hotels will spend more on technology in 2018, and mobile solutions in particular will top the list of capital investments. Many hotels are integrating mobile booking, mobile keys, mobile payments and mobile check-in into their operations. Other hotels are emphasizing the in-room experience, boosting bandwidth and upgrading flat screen TVs to more easily interface with guest mobile devices. And though not yet mainstream, there are many exciting technology developments on the near horizon. The Internet of Things (loT) is taking form in some places, and can be found in guest room control systems, voice activation systems, and in wearable sensors that can be used for access and payment options. Virtual reality headsets are available at some hotels so guests can enjoy virtual trips to exotic locations or if off-property, preview conference facilities and guest rooms. How long will it be before a hotel employs a fleet of robots for room service, or utilizes a hologram as a concierge, or installs gesture-controlled walls that feature interactive digital displays? Some hotels are already using augmented reality for translation services, or interactive wall maps, or even virtual décor. This pace of innovation is challenging property owners and brands to stay on top of the latest technology trends while still addressing current projects. The January Hotel Business Review will explore what some hotels are doing to maximize their opportunities in the mobile technology space.