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Mark Ricketts

Charting a path for growth is an enviable and exciting journey for any hospitality organization. It takes a bold, yet careful blend of vision, strategy and technical expertise in a wide variety of areas, including property identification, financing, human resources and organization building, and day-to-day hotel operations. Regardless, as in all successful business endeavors, this journey ultimately depends on the relationships of trust and mutual benefit, with everyone from investors and brand partners to our staff, that we cultivate and secure along the way. Read on...

Rocco Bova

Reputation used to be word of mouth, recommendations and built over years of hard work and professional behavior. Today, thanks (or not) to social media, reputation can be built in very short time (see ''influencers'') and destroyed as quickly. Needless to say that your online behavior is as important as your public one. Ensure you follow these basic rules to not fall in the sea of sameness. I am not an expert, and neither I want to be, but I want to share what helped me become a trusted and respected hotelier. Read on...

Cate Farmer

The way travelers are taking vacations has changed. Expectations are higher. Travelers want a worry-free vacation with personality. It is all about the experiences and maybe more importantly how those experiences translate to an emotional connection. The story, the people, the adventure is as important as, maybe even more important than, the physical deliverable. The team at Margaritaville Hollywood Beach Resort's mission is to deliver Fun and Escapism to our guests. We provide something unique and somewhat intangible and that ultimately differentiates and makes us successful. We take tremendous pride in knowing that our guests return again and again to the Resort because of this emotional connection. Read on...

Cristine Henderson

Everything from clothing to condos are now produced with some degree of sustainable measures in mind. The extension of this practice to the hospitality industry might come as a surprise to some, especially with the added competition of short-term rental services such as Airbnb. However, sustainability has made its mark on the hotel industry and shows no signs of slowing down. Not only does this innovation help the environment and perpetuate social responsibility, but consumers love it. Read ahead for a more thorough investigation by Cristine Henderson, AIA, NCARB of Hoefer Wysocki of how the hospitality industry is incorporating sustainable measures to rebuild its foundations through design. Read on...

David Dionne

In an ever-increasingly competitive hospitality marketplace, owners and operators look to enhance their competitive advantage by providing uniquely positive, memorable experiences. Hotel and resort owners and operators agree that a hospitality brand holds the potential to create such novel guest experiences through the amenities leaders select for the brand's identity. What is a really unique and novel amenity? A really great playground. What makes a great playground? A great playground stimulates a child's imagination, allows children to build confidence through experience and skill building opportunities and can be designed for kids of all abilities and ages. Read on...

Justin Laxton

Providing your hotel guests with the essential items they want and need is an important ingredient of overall customer satisfaction. In this article, we'll dive into tactics you could use to identify the essentials your customers need, and discuss how the brands you stock can lead to a delightful customer experience. We'll also discuss the role local trends and sustainability can play in creating a strong customer impression. At the end of the article, you will have a good idea of how to build and maintain a continuous process to create memorable experiences for your customers. Read on...

Mark Heymann

A persistent labor shortage means the hospitality industry is facing tough workforce questions: How can a hotel deliver the level of service it promises with a smaller staff? Will tougher competition for workers impact average wage rates in a historically low-paying industry? What solutions, like cross-utilization, can hotels implement now? And what solutions will require larger-scale legal and societal change? Among the more transformational ideas this article will explore are rethinking current minimum shift requirements and looking to nontraditional sources, from retirees to training the formerly incarcerated, for future hospitality work. Read on...

Lisa Ross

The vast millennial population makes them a major target group for all businesses. That's why, hoteliers must find effective ways to attract this young, tech-savvy and demanding generation. Millennials are more well-travelled and adventurous than the previous generation. Their exposure to technology sets them apart as the first to grow up fully connected. They expect something new from the hospitality industry, throughout their entire experience – from making the reservation to checkout and beyond. Read on to learn how to cater to millennial desires for customization over generalization, need to stay super connected, and appreciation for brand engagement on social media. Read on...

Daniel Lafferty

Hoteliers are well-versed in the art of visual branding and the creation of ambient spaces, recognising the significance of brand image in attracting customers. Yet how a leisure brand sounds is becoming as important as how it looks when ensuring business success. But how do you create a unique brand soundtrack that best reflects specific brand values and personality? Daniel Lafferty, Director of Music and Voice at global audio branding specialist PHMG, explains how hoteliers can harness the power of audio to differentiate their venue from competitors by using the right combination of custom composed music, voice and script. Read on...

Felicia Hyde

Travel has no age limit. This is one of the many reasons it's one of the world's fastest-growing industries and enjoyed by many age groups. From baby boomers to millennials to Gen X to the growing Gen Z cohort, each group has needs that drive their purchasing behavior. Pointedly, a hotel that appeals to one group may not resonate with another, so hoteliers must deliver a custom experience that leaves their target audience wanting more. To achieve this, consider these key design strategies that have transformed the multifamily industry when designing your next hotel. Read on...

Christopher Manley

Hotels operating in a seasonal market must be prepared to continually adjust to the drastic variations in business throughout the year. By far, one of the greatest challenges for such properties is to maintain proper staffing throughout the seasonal swings. Hotels that proactively combat staffing challenges – through tailored strategic planning and cultural efforts – will be well positioned to thrive in seasonal environments. Hiring team members during the proper season, incentive programs, referral programs and career pathing efforts all contribute to creating an "Employer of Choice" brand, which is an often overlooked yet critical factor in successful recruitment and retention. Read on...

Javier Coll

As hotel owners and investors discuss strategies for success in the coming year, a careful review of current market conditions is imperative. While supply in the international hotel market remains growing and strong, room rates are beginning to soften, and smart owners should now consider a brand conversion strategy to stay ahead of the curve. In this article, Javier Coll, Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer of Apple Leisure Group, shares why a conversion, with the right brand partner, is key to beating out the competition in a potentially oversaturated market. Read on...

Brett Tabano

Consumers are spending increasing amounts of time on mobile devices, forcing brands to rely more heavily than ever on digital marketing to drive bookings and boost revenue. Unfortunately, the ever-changing digital landscape is becoming more difficult to navigate and control, often resulting in brand safety issues. From ensuring that ads don't run next to damaging content to preventing competitors and other nefarious "squatters" from exploiting the awareness you've built, marketers must take proactive measures to protect the value of their brand. As a scalable, efficient solution, a growing number of marketers are shifting to a real-time, programmatic, platform-based strategy. Here's why. Read on...

Michael Hess

While some hotel executives may manage only one hotel operation, most owners and operators oversee hotel chains big and small. Executives have a large order of tasks, employees, guests and more to keep straight-all while keeping the bigger picture in mind to ensure steady revenue and growth. Having a cohesive data system is of utmost importance whether managing hotel chains or singular locations-from a revenue, profits, employee and guest standpoint. One area that often gets overlooked but can greatly impact your bottom line is waste management. Read on...

Steve Lee

Autonomous Driving Technology is opening a new era of Transpitality, a new form of Hospitality merging transportation and hotel into one form. Autonomous Mobile Hotels equipped with basic sleeping, working, and washroom functions will be providing door-to-door transportation service in between traveler's home and destinations, letting travelers use their travel time more efficiently and productively. Using Autonomous Driving technology, the Autonomous Mobile Hotels will serve as a personal vehicle and mobile hotel room, offering flexible schedules, lower costs, privacy, and comfort. With growing amounts of Autonomous vehicles on the roads, there will be emerging needs of Hospitality to fit the new paradigm. 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.