News for the Hospitality Executive
|by Doug Kennedy, August 2007
Although having an effective hotel reservations sales training program is one key ingredient of a sales development action plan, other essential components will ensure that your hotel is actualizing the full potential of each and every transient reservations inquiry. Too often managers only implement the sale training component, and then if they measure the results at all, they do so exclusively through mystery shopping test calls. Other hotels make little or no effort at reservations sales training, mistakenly believe that the hotel reservations function is less important today than in days past, with the proliferation of information, virtual tours, and photo galleries that are available online.
Yet if you listen to real calls from real callers these days, you’ll find firsthand that the Internet has only broadened the spectrum of calls that agents receive. Even after viewing the hotel and its rooms directly online, many still want to call and talk to a live person, especially if it is first time visit. Others have read online reviews at places like TripAdvisor, IGOUGO and Travel Post and want to get personal opinions and suggestions from on-site agents.
If you are looking to keep your team on the continuous and ongoing journey to reservations sales excellence once you have exposed them to sales training, here are some other components for maximizing hotel reservations sales success.
Know when they are calling. Despite the availability of better technology at lower price points, too many reservations offices still lack proper call tracking systems. Some have no phone activity reports at all, while others manage only from a report showing only a monthly or daily roll-up. Make sure your phone activity reports tell you:Indeed, implementing contemporary, customer-focused, reservations sales training is a key ingredient of any recipe of reservations sales success, but other essential components such as those listed above will provide your hotel or company on the roadmap to continuous success on the endless journey to reservations sales excellence.Right-sized staffing. Make sure your reservations office has enough agents to realistically field the call activity you are receiving, which is why the staring place is the above reports. Excessive budget cuts in this department only hurt bottom-line profits not help, so instead of looking at reservations with a “cost control” paradigm, they need to be investing in maximizing sales effectiveness and optimizing revenue opportunities.
|Also See:||Overcoming - “Now Is Just Not A Good Time For Training…” / Doug Kennedy / July 2007|
|Walking The Thin Line Between Hospitality Excellence and Mediocrity / Doug Kennedy / June 2007|
|The True Story Of Two Difficult Guests / Doug Kennedy / May 2007|
|Mentoring To The Max; Frontline Supervisors Often Caught in the Middle / Doug Kennedy / April 2007|
|First Step In Maximizing Reservations Sales: Believe It’s Possible / Doug Kennedy / March 2007|
|Training Is Key To Turning “Desk Clerks” Into Front Desk Salespersons / March 2007|
|Mastering The Lost Art of Check-In / Doug Kennedy / February 2007|
|Speaking of Hotel Rooms: When You Turn The Lights Off They All Look The Same / Doug Kennedy / December 2006|
|Train Your Front Desk To Overcome Challenges of Fielding Reservations Calls At The Front Desk / Doug Kennedy / October 2006|
|The Hotels Reservations Sales Process; Today’s Callers Want a Personalized and Customized Experience / Doug Kennedy / October 2006|
|It’s Time To Give Hotel Guests What They REALLY Need and Want Daily! Key Basics Some Hotels Still Fall Short On / Doug Kennedy / September 2006|
|Have You Listened To What Your Hotel Sales and Reservations Agents Are Saying To Real Customers? / Doug Kennedy / August 2006|
|Next Step In Revenue Optimization: Train Your Front Desk and Reservations Staff To “Maintain The Rate Fences” / Doug Kennedy / July 2006|
|Beyond “Outrageous,” and “Legendary” Customer Service Training: Creating “Ordinary Excellence, Daily!” / Doug Kennedy / June 2006|
|The Politics of Revenue Management / Doug Kennedy / June 2006|
|Hotel Sales “Steps” and “Processes” Are Out; Today’s Inquiry Caller’s Want A Personalized Sales Experience / Doug Kennedy / June 2006|