Philia Tounta

Human Resource Management in a small business can be a vital task leading to success. Specifically in the service sector, service quality depends mostly on the quality of personnel since it is labor intensive and requires face-to-face interaction with customers. Unfortunately, small-sized hotels are faced with unfavorable conditions but they have opportunities to expand using their strengths as small firms with high levels of flexibility. Smaller organizations need to change HR practices compared to larger organizations because of the different workforce requirements and legal. Specifically, they must focus on improving customer satisfaction and the quality of service through a procedure of well organized HR management. Read on...

Lily Mockerman

How can hotels successfully expand their revenue strategy beyond occupancy? Is heads-in-beds truly the only method for increasing revenue and profits? When should occupancy be a priority, and when should hotels minimize occupancy for maximum revenue? With expert advice, years of experience and thoughtful analysis, president and CEO of Total Customized Revenue Management Lily Mockerman discusses both the benefits and the drawbacks of relying on occupancy as the sole indicator of a hotel's performance. Read on...

Ashley Halberda

In light of the "Me Too" and "Times Up" movement, recently passed County Hotel Worker Protection Act of 2018 will be requiring hotels to develop, maintain, and comply with new sexual harassment policies. With this new industry-wide pledge, hotel leaders agreed to enforce stronger safety and security measures for hotel employees. One of the ways they plan to carry this mission is through the use of safety devices known as "panic buttons." These new laws and regulations come at a pretty steep price to hotel employers, we want you to know what you can do to ensure you're protected. Read on...

Gino Engels

In order to best position your hotel in a competitive marketplace, it is essential to have an airtight revenue strategy so that room prices are priced right every time. While that sounds simple enough, it is important to remember that there are four key factors (events, timing, trends and competition) that need to be accounted for in order to accurately forecast demand and maximize revenue for a hotel. In this article, Gino Engels, CCO and co-founder at OTA Insight, discusses why these factors matter and how to extract exploitable data and insights from each. Read on...

Library Archives

 
Mia A. Mackman

This article reviews contributing factors to rising capital expenditures and investment demands in relationship to progressively important guest experiences and wellness attributes. As increasing wellness and lifestyle features continue to emerge across the hospitality sector focused on well-being, new value propositions continue to evolve. This article reviews Capex spending increases amid rising construction costs, and consumer demand with an emphasis on the value of incorporating enhanced spa and wellness-oriented property features. Read on...

Mark Heymann

In simplest terms, optimization means consistently delivering against customer expectations to drive revenue, while managing costs to maximize profitability. With the economy projected by some to soften by year-end, the hospitality industry must prepare for short-term growth while planning for longer-term slowing - and be flexible enough to respond to unexpected events. Combine this with the continued challenges of attracting and retaining talent and the priority for hotel operators becomes clear: workforce optimization. You see in this article how a deeper understanding of the specific factors driving both guest satisfaction and employee engagement will give you creative options to optimize operations. Read on...

Paul van Meerendonk

Get as much heads in beds as possible while optimizing your hotel's profit potential. This straightforward definition of a revenue manager's job probably rings true for many of us in the industry. However, if a revenue manager is solely focused on guest-room pricing, then who's in charge of enhancing revenue for the rest of your property? Hotels can generate more than half of their revenue on non-room revenue streams, yet traditional revenue managers and revenue management systems still take a limited "heads-in-beds" approach. So, how do we best decide what business to accept when faced with the complexities of multiple revenue stream considerations like function-space booking? Read on...

Ed Fuller

Hospitality industry leader Ed Fuller shares his expertise on the importance of hotel safety and security preparedness in today's tumultuous times. The need for hotels, both large and small, to have crisis management and a crisis communications management plan in place at all times has never been more urgent. Hopefully, hotel executives will never need to activate these plans but being prepared is paramount. Additionally, Fuller highlights several news stories that sparked a media relations nightmare for several national brands offering readers insight on how local incidents can become front page news thanks to people's smart phones. Read on...

Nancy Snyder

As technology continues to permeate households across North America, consumers are looking for hospitality settings to mirror these conveniences for a premium guest experience. However, in addition to remaining attractive to discerning guests, hospitality executives will find a compelling business benefit to incorporating tech upgrades into hospitality spaces: hotel properties that incorporate Internet of Things technology and high-quality, tech-forward tools experience significant reductions in energy consumption, saving resources, money and time to increase net profits. Nancy Snyder, Sales Manager at Legrand, explores ways hotel decision makers can incorporate IoT to enhance the guest experience and, ultimately, improve the bottom line. Read on...

Court Williams

New hotel brands are being developed on an almost daily basis, to the point that it becomes confusing for guests and the public to identify what brand belongs to whom. In some instances, hotel groups are buying out existing brands to get their reservations book, while in others they are building new brands from the ground up. Is there a solid business case to be made for the proliferation in new brands, or is it overkill? Court Williams, CEO of HVS Executive Search analyses the benefits and disadvantages to all stakeholders, to determine whether this state of affairs is good for the hospitality industry over the long-term, or simply a short-sighted strategy without a future. Read on...

Rick Garlick

Regardless of how technologically driven or popular a hotel brand is, customer service can truly make or break a hospitality experience. While our homes and daily lives can be reliant upon Alexa, hotel experiences still require personal touches and a "ready to serve" experience. What can we do to consistently deliver high customer satisfaction rates? This article takes a deeper dive into a variety of different approaches which hotel management can implement to continually motivate their employees leaving customers feeling positive, satisfied and fulfilled from the overall experience. Read on...

John Welty

Those who don't have an Amazon Alexa or similar smart device in their homes likely know family or friends who do. These new smart speakers and their Google and Apple counterparts are quickly becoming a part of daily routines as many go to their smart speakers first to check the weather, set alarms or play their favorite songs. Now, hotels are adopting this and other new technologies to help guests stay connected through the technology they have become accustomed to at home. Although providing this new level of service can be a win-win for many hotel owners and operators, hotels who implement this new technology could be increasing their exposures to new risks. Read on...

Eduardo Fernandez

The business of hotels is always in flux, consistently aiming to meet the growing needs of their guests, build loyalty and stand out from the crowd of competitors. With food expectations mounting, made popular via social media frenzy, the growing importance of food-rating apps and the heavy use of "top lists," providing round-ups of the best burger, ice cream cone or brunch in a state, city or neighborhood, travel destinations have had to tout their local food scene as a means to gain visitors. With hotels offering food and beverage options in highly-competitive markets, brands need to shift their restaurants to cater to the growing food culture. Read on...

Adria Levtchenko

New and, sometimes, complex technologies are impacting almost every area of hotel operations and management, from the C-suite to frontline staff to guests. Their adept use can improve operational efficiencies, enhance the guest experience and boost the bottom line. However, there is a lot to choose from with new concepts and technology solutions appearing, it seems, daily. The successful implementation of these new technologies relies on a smart approach to their identification, assessment and purchase. Read on...

Todd Soloway

Corporate M&A activity has skyrocketed in recent years. By some estimates, global deals are projected to surpass $4 trillion by the end of 2018, which would be the highest amount ever recorded in a single year. The hospitality industry has seen a similar surge in mega-deals over the last several years. While economic factors have contributed to this rise, hospitality has also been shaped by industry-specific influences that are driving companies to acquire and consolidate with others. This article will examine common legal issues that arise during M&A transactions involving hospitality companies and will offer guidance on how both sides of a deal should address the risks and liabilities. Read on...

Derrick Garrett

You pay close attention to what your hotel looks like. You listen to what your staff has to say. You encourage – and respond to – guest feedback. When was the last time you listened to your hotel? What does your hotel sound like? Listen up for ways to engage the most underutilized of the senses in the hotel industry, sound. When you focus on the music in your hotel you won't just get the reward of sweet sounds, you'll also like the result of its impact on guest satisfaction, brand loyalty and how that all looks on the bottom line. Read on...

Scott Acton

"What happens in Vegas Stays in Vegas" may help save relationships, jobs and reputations by hiding mistakes made by visitors to Sin City. It does little to protect the global hospitality industry from repeating the same mistakes made by hotel properties. Las Vegas-based Forte Specialty Contractors CEO Scott Acton takes a look at the design successes and failures in a city where hospitality properties are punished by high-energy, high-occupancy conditions that accelerate wear and tear and provide quicker assessment of design decisions. This article shares what Forte has learned in this hospitality-design laboratory and shares best practices with the industry. Read on...

Aaron Koppelberger

Is an automated external defibrillator (AED) on the guest list at your hotel? Currently, there is no federal mandate requiring hotels to have AEDs. However, a recent Harris Poll found that 69 percent of Americans believe hotels should have an AED installed. In the U.S., there are 350,000 out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrests (SCA) each year, and 90 percent of out-of-hospital SCA events are fatal. AEDs, however, greatly improve a person's chance of survival. This article explains the need for AEDs and includes steps for implementing an AED program at your property. It could help you earn more business and more importantly, potentially save a life. Read on...

Shahin Sharifi

This research examines consumer reactions to types of consumer reviews and finds that when a satisfaction guarantee is not provided, the most favorable evaluations belong to positive reviews, followed by mixed reviews, and then negative reviews. With a satisfaction guarantee, consumers react the most favorably to mixed reviews and have similar evaluations of positive and negative reviews. Furthermore, this research concludes that uncertainty intolerance (i.e., the need for cognitive closure) enhances the evaluations of positive and negative reviews but lowers the evaluations of mixed reviews. Nonetheless, with a satisfaction guarantee, consumers' uncertainty intolerance enhances also the evaluations of mixed reviews. Read on...

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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.