Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Poling

Monica Poling

Online Editor, TravelAge West

Monica Poling is the online editor at TravelAge West, a leading B2B travel trade publication distributed to retail travel agents throughout the Western United States. She is also edits TravelGlitter.com, a website promoting the importance of community, culture and sustainability in travel. Additionally she provides marketing and social media advice at MonicaPoling.com. Ms. Poling has worked in the hospitality industry for more than 20 years, and in addition to her writing portfolio, she consults for tourism boards, hotels and tour operators on such issues as online promotions and social engagement. Ms. Poling's recent speaking engagements have included the Los Angeles Travel & Adventure Show, the Home Based Travel Agent Forum, the Outside Sales Support Network (OSSN), and the Travel & Tourism Marketing Association (TTMA). Her work at TravelAge West magazine has won numerous awards, including “Top 25 Feature Articles of the Year” by the Trade, Associations and Business Publications International organization and a Bronze Award from the American Society of Business Publication Editors. She has also been published in Bespoke magazine (St. Regis Hotels), Montage magazine, and Preferred Lifestyles. Ms. Poling received her undergraduate degree in Mathematics from the University of California at Riverside, while also pursuing a minor in English.

Ms. Poling can be contacted at 323-466-7019 or editor@travelglitter.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.