Conserve Water at the Source: Repair and Protect Pipes from Leaks

By Larry Gillanders Co-founder, Ace DuraFlo Systems | June 07, 2015

We have seen it all over the Internet and the news stations: California is facing its fourth year in a drought, and it is affecting every resident and every business in the state. The economic and financial consequences could be disastrous if water conservation strategies are not implemented immediately, and the state has promptly mandated that everyone do so. This drought and the scramble to cut water usage, (some Californian cities have been ordered to decrease water usage 35 percent), sheds light on water conservation as a whole.

Hopefully, the flood of news regarding this historic drought is making other professionals and homeowners in other states ask themselves, "What can I do to reduce water usage?" The reality is that this is a wake-up call for every U.S. business to design and enforce water conservation practices. Just because a drought isn't affecting your business's geographic area right now, does not mean that your business should continue its water use worry-free.

The hotel industry is one of the country's biggest users of clean water, out of all types of commercial and institutional facilities, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Unsurprisingly, most water is used for bathrooms, laundry, landscaping and kitchens. This is the perfect opportunity to take heed of the moment and reduce your property's water usage.

The Solution

There are many, frequently-talked about concepts available for hotels, motels and resorts to cut their water usage, which includes switching to low-volume plumbing fixtures, reducing the amount of laundry that is washed, tearing out thirsty shrubbery, turning off the air conditioning in vacant rooms and only using dry carpet cleaning methods. But those ideas would probably involve purchasing new equipment, retraining employees or increasing employee hours, all of which are extremely inconvenient, and they may not save your hotel a substantial amount of wasted water.

For instance, you can pay a plumber to install low-volume plumbing fixtures in all of the rooms' bathrooms, but if your hotel has a pool, day spa or restaurant, then the effectiveness of the low-volume plumbing fixtures could be moot.

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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.