Attitude Can Predict Who will Remain On the Job

By Doug Walner President & CEO, Psychological Services, Inc. | September 02, 2010

In the hotel industry, customer service positions require exceptional interpersonal skills. The ability to deal with a wide range of personalities--he flexibility to adapt quickly to changing situations and patience are key.

When hiring for these positions, it can be difficult to get a clear sense of a candidate's true fit for the position at hand - most people put their best foot forward during job interviews, but do they really have the capabilities and characteristics needed to be successful on the job? And, if you do hire whom you consider to be the right candidate, can you have any assurance that he or she will remain on the job?

According to a survey reported in the Wall Street Journal, 34% of all application forms contain outright lies about experience, education, and ability to perform essential functions on the job. As many as 30% of jobseekers exaggerate their accomplishments, and about 10% "seriously misrepresent" their background(1). Another survey noted that nearly one-third of job applicants listed dates of employment that were inaccurate by more than three months.(2)

As these statistics suggest, sometimes traditional hiring methods are not enough to "hire for keeps"-- that is, identifying and employing the candidate who is the best fit for the job. Interviews and reference/background checks are useful forms of recruitment. However, a more comprehensive approach to hiring - using, for example, pre-employment testing and assessment tools --can help reduce the risk of employee turnover and increase retention of quality employees, which could end up saving you money and time in the long run.

Why 'Hire For Keeps'?

For management positions, identifying the people who have the most potential and right attitudes is especially important. An impressive resume and the ability to interview well doesn't necessarily mean the candidate possesses all of the qualities necessary to be successful -which is one of the reasons for going beyond traditional interview processes to ensure you're investing in the right people, especially those in management positions. Investing time and financial resources into really knowing whom it is you are hiring can provide long-term results through increased employee retention and overall customer/employee satisfaction. For example, many surveys say that the number one issue facing business is finding and keeping good employees. Nationally, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reports an average annual employee turnover rate for all companies is 23.2 percent.

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The hotel industry has undertaken a long-term effort to build more responsible and socially conscious businesses. What began with small efforts to reduce waste - such as paperless checkouts and refillable soap dispensers - has evolved into an international movement toward implementing sustainable development practices. In addition to establishing themselves as good corporate citizens, adopting eco-friendly practices is sound business for hotels. According to a recent report from Deloitte, 95% of business travelers believe the hotel industry should be undertaking “green” initiatives, and Millennials are twice as likely to support brands with strong management of environmental and social issues. Given these conclusions, hotels are continuing to innovate in the areas of environmental sustainability. For example, one leading hotel chain has designed special elevators that collect kinetic energy from the moving lift and in the process, they have reduced their energy consumption by 50%  over conventional elevators. Also, they installed an advanced air conditioning system which employs a magnetic mechanical system that makes them more energy efficient. Other hotels are installing Intelligent Building Systems which monitor and control temperatures in rooms, common areas and swimming pools, as well as ventilation and cold water systems. Some hotels are installing Electric Vehicle charging stations, planting rooftop gardens, implementing stringent recycling programs, and insisting on the use of biodegradable materials. Another trend is the creation of Green Teams within a hotel's operation that are tasked to implement earth-friendly practices and manage budgets for green projects. Some hotels have even gone so far as to curtail or eliminate room service, believing that keeping the kitchen open 24/7 isn't terribly sustainable. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.