News for the Hospitality Executive
Conscious Concierge: Five Hotel Hospitality Tips
By Peter Puckett
December 21, 2010
The responsibilities of a concierge go far beyond simply being polite and helpful when treating hotel visitors. The first impression guests have of a hotel they are visiting is often taken from their experience with the concierge. A concierge that is slow, inattentive, and unsociable will not win any awards from customers, and will certainly not benefit the hotel in any way. Here is a list of several bits of advice that are sure to help a concierge get bigger tips, make a better day for guests, and improve business for the hotel.
Be Attentive to Individual Guests
Do not simply act like an automaton when dealing with guests. If the guest is trying to instigate small talk, oblige them and engage in conversation with exuberance. Take care of being too chatty, or holding up the guest in conversation. If a weary traveler has just arrived in your hotel, greet them with a smile and comply with any reasonable wishes they may have. Be understanding in the event of a booking error, and do the absolute best in aiding the guest in receiving a room. Always be sure to ask hotel guests if there is anything you may do for them if a guest appears distraught.
Know Your Local Area
Hotel guests will often refer to the concierge in order to decide their itinerary. As most guests of the hotel are foreign to the local area, they are often utterly dependent on the concierge's own awareness of activities available. Try to present guests with the best list of events occurring in the hotel and around it throughout the day. If customers are booked for several days in a row, and there is a banquet on the morning of their last day, inform them of the banquet ahead of time. Making restaurant recommendations is yet another major responsibility for the attentive concierge. Visit local dining establishments and gain an idea of their price range, cuisine, and quality of service in order to best describe the dining experience to hotel guests.
Some guests may seem to overstay their welcome at the hotel by way of ridiculous requests and needs. These customers often are the most prone to getting incredibly upset when their demands are blown off. If a guest is getting on your nerves, perhaps a breathing exercise is necessary to calm your nerves and allow you to continue as normal? A careless concierge risks losing tips if the utmost care is not taken to follow the wishes of hotel guests. Accredited online hospitality schools are available and offer more instruction in how to deal with difficult guests.
Keep Taps on Online Reviews
Hotel hospitality has become a incredibly important facet to maintaining a successful hotel, even more so than ten years ago. This is thanks to the prevalence of the social networking craze which has taken much of the world by storm. A guest with a negative experience at a hotel ten years ago would be hard pressed to find a means of informing a large number of people looking for hotels. Now, hotel review web sites are common place, allowing customers with negative experiences to share their woes with others who are looking for a place to stay. Most of those looking for hotels primarily refer to reviews posted by other hotel guests. Take the time to read comments about your hotel, and do your best to help address the negative reviews in a proactive way.
Encourage Positive Reviews
Do not overdo the encouragement for positive reviews. Many hotels give their customers cards which they may write things they were impressed with while staying at the hotel, and things which could be improved on. If a guest mentions what a wonderful time they have had throughout their experience at the hotel, a casual remark asking the customer to visit a specific website and submit a review is sufficient in convincing some guests to make a positive review.
Peter Puckett is a journalist hailing from Florida. When he is not traveling and writing, he is working for online universities, and spending time with his family.