News for the Hospitality Executive
by Lisa Miller
One of the most pressing challenges hospitality leaders face is making certain the front line team members understand generating revenue in guest engagements and guest hospitality go hand in hand. Both are related operations and both operations are needed in every guest engagement.
It does not take much to extend a kindness or politeness to a guest. The front line staff is generally very good at this and not in any way inhibited. But when it comes to enticing the guest to spend some money on what the hotel has to offer, the front line staff seem to shy away from such guest engagements.
There are many reasons staff may be subdued in making an encounter with the guest a time to generate income, but with proper direction, the front line staff will - and should - see the benefit to each of them, the hotel, and most importantly, the guest! Even AAA and Forbes expect the front line staff to embrace the guest in generating revenue. AAA looks for the higher level of service to anticipate the guest’s need. Another way to say anticipate the guest need is to say ‘up-sell.’ Both of these terms point to the guest spending monies on a hotel amenity or activity.
Take a look at the check-in. During the check-in experience, the staff might feel that the hotel has just taken monies for the room and it is too much to make the conversation benefit the hotel – but this is a must. The guest needs to see the benefits that the hotel has to offer. The check-in event is a great time to let the guest know about places to eat in the hotel and not just the place down the street. It’s the time to make certain the guest is extended a special invitation to the spa or hotel activity and not just how to hook up to the internet or where to find a local attraction. Sometimes all it takes is a staff person mentioning a hotel amenity for the guest to want to make the effort to take advantage of what is being offered.
Even in the hotel dining rooms, where we would think staff are the experts at generating revenue, too often staff miss the easiest opportunities. How unfortunate is it that when the entrée is completed, the staff may address the guest with, “You don’t want dessert do you?” or “Did you save room for dessert?” Staff should be forward with such an easy sell – take the dessert menu to the table, present the open dessert menu to the guest and tell him how great each dessert is. Who can resist the description of a tempting crème Brule or chocolate mousse? Just ask the guest! How easy is that and what great benefits for the staff, the hotel, and the guest!
As leaders we need to help our front line staff help themselves. Hospitality to the guest and generating revenue need to be accomplished at the same time. Teach staff how to make more money and at the same time to raise the bar to a higher level of service. Hospitality and generating revenue - hand in hand operations!
Lisa Miller is President of Advisors Hospitality Consulting, (AHC). She is a former AAA inspector and AAA Inspections Manager. Lisa and the AHC team provide expert advice on AAA, Forbes, and the inspection processes. AHC has also received acclaim in working with hotels, restaurants, spas, and golf clubs around the world in teaching staff not only how to reach higher service levels, but how to garner more revenue in each guest engagement and to create and maintain guest advocates. She welcomes questions to: email@example.com
Got Mail.....From AAA / Lisa Miller / July 2011