Creating Cultures of Confidence with Mint-on-the-Pillow Management
By Darnell Lattal President & CEO, Aubrey Daniels International | August 01, 2013
Certain work settings - such as hotels - have unique pressures because every day the actions of employees are visible to customers and every employee action can affect future business. Hotel employees face a multitude of high expectations, low tolerance for failure, and many responsibilities, including the following:
- Attending to a tired customer needing room service
- Dealing with late-night, loud partiers
- Troubleshooting technology, from Internet services to working televisions
- Answering the front desk phone within a few rings
- Providing a clean room and fresh supplies
- Ensuring an easy check-in process
- Serving food graciously
- Acquiring knowledge of the surrounding area to give guests recommendations and directions
- Reacting effectively to medical emergencies
The list goes on-and on.
The reasons for visits to hotels vary, but guests require professional behavior from staff. Down time, resolving disputes, complaining of aching feet... Personal imperfections cannot be aired in front of the customer. After all, the hotel industry is one of the few businesses in which people who ask for services are called guests.
Consider the pressure to be constantly "on" that employees in such settings often face. From the parking attendant to the registration desk to the cleaning service, every element is visible - the employees are part of the setting and they have a presentation burden that employees in other businesses don't carry in this way. How such employees show up literally does matter.
Positive Under Pressure
Making it all look easy isn't easy, but hotel management expects a pleasant environment for their employees, as well as for the hotel's guests. Examine your work setting to see how personal and professional pressures are handled by management (from senior leaders to supervisory levels). Ensure that you look beyond old-fashioned hierarchies of command and control to create a culture of confidence, where every employee feels valued and supported.