Editorial Board   

Ms. Sarmiento

Fran Sarmiento

Executive Vice President, Venture Insurance Programs

Fran Sarmiento is the Executive Vice President of Programs for Venture Insurance Programs, a national program administrator for select industries, including the hotel and resort industry. At Venture, Ms. Sarmiento manages more than $75 million of insurance premiums and is responsible for overseeing the underwriting, development and expansion of all programs. An outspoken proponent of providing insurance coverage that is specifically tailored to meet the needs of the ever-changing hospitality industry, Ms. Sarmiento's 30 years of commercial insurance experience includes positions with Liberty Mutual Insurance Company and CIGNA Insurance. She has spent the last 10 years focused on industry specific insurance programs, with one of her main areas of emphasis being the hotel and resort industry. Ms. Sarmiento maintains an active involvement in several community service and insurance industry organizations. Most recently she served on the Board of Directors of the Target Markets Program Administrator Association. Ms. Sarmiento attended the University Of Pennsylvania and has earned numerous insurance designations including the Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriting (CPCU), the most prestigious insurance designation, and her Associate in Risk Management (ARM). She is married and has three children.

Ms. Sarmiento can be contacted at 800-282-6247 or fsarmiento@ventureprograms.com

Coming up in April 2019...

Guest Service: A Culture of YES

In a recent global consumers report, 97% of the participants said that customer service is a major factor in their loyalty to a brand, and 76% said they view customer service as the true test of how much a company values them. And since there is no industry more reliant on customer satisfaction than the hotel industry, managers must be unrelenting in their determination to hire, train and empower the very best people, and to create a culture of exceptional customer service within their organization. Of course, this begins with hiring the right people. There are people who are naturally service-oriented; people who are warm, empathetic, enthusiastic, pleasant, thoughtful and optimistic; people who take pride in their ability to solve problems for the hotel guests they are serving. Then, those same employees must be empowered to solve problems using their own judgment, without having to track down a manager to do it. This is how seamless problem solving and conflict resolution are achieved in guest service. This willingness to empower employees is part of creating a Culture of Yes within an organization.  The goal is to create an environment in which everyone is striving to say “Yes”, rather than figuring out ways to say, “No”. It is essential that this attitude be instilled in all frontline, customer-facing, employees. Finally, in order to ensure that the hotel can generate a consistent level of performance across a wide variety of situations, management must also put in place well-defined systems and standards, and then educate their employees about them. Every employee must be aware of and responsible for every standard that applies in their department. 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.