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Hotel Sales Negotiating Training, Circa 2020

Doug Kennedy | June 24, 2019

By Doug Kennedy As a conference speaker and trainer, I am finding that one of my most requested topics lately is hotel sales negotiating techniques. Based on the initial inquiries received, I get the impression that many hotel leaders still view negotiating as being a separate part of the selling process such as it was originally taught in 1990’s era training. These days, successful negotiating starts from how one handles leads at their “intake point,” which is important in order to maximize effectiveness further along in the sales engagement. First, let’s look at where in the sales process negotiating is taking place in the era...

How to Register Your Front Desk Staff to Become “Certified in the Heart of Hospitality”

Kennedy Training Network | May 23, 2019

In the era of online reviews and social media, guest experiences at the front desk impact the financial success of your hotel. First impressions formulated at check-in bias guests' overall opinions, whether for better or for worse. If you're looking to refocus your team on the essentials of hospitality excellence, it's easy to register your staff to become Certified in the Heart of Hospitality. For a fee of just $995 total, you can certify up to 3 managers and 6 front desk colleagues; additional staff can be certified for $99 each at any time. Here's How It Works: First, KTN presents a live "kick-off" webinar f...

What Hotels Can Learn From Delta Airlines About Personalized Guest Engagement

Doug Kennedy | May 3, 2019

By Doug Kennedy My career as a hotel industry trainer and conference speaker keeps me on the road nearly every week, so I try to take advantage of every available travel perk. Living in the Ft. Lauderdale / Miami area, I am fortunate to have two major airports within 35 minutes, and with this being a popular tourism destination there is a wide selection of non-stop flights. Therefore, I cannot always remain loyal to just one airline because it's hard to justify wasting time taking a connecting flight, or perhaps spending an extra night on the road, just to earn miles. As a result, I have premium status with several airlines each year. I...

“Heart Failure”: The Leading Cause of Bad Reviews

Doug Kennedy | March 20, 2019

By Doug Kennedy When you read a cross-section of negative comments from online reviews and guest surveys, it's easy to recognize a common theme across all lodging operations: "Heart failure." More specifically, I am referring to the failure to understand the true heart of hospitality, which is "caring about as well as caring for others." When we care "for" others, we provide the minimal requirements of a positive guest stay, the foundation of which is a clean, well maintained "physical product," (the accommodation and public facilities), delivered promptly and efficiently. Yet when we care "about" others, we understand the hospitality b...

5 Easy Ways to Reduce Turnover at the Front Desk

Cathy Cook | February 11, 2019

By Cathy Cook With one of my main roles at KTN being to conduct front desk hospitality training worldwide, one issue that always seems to surface is turnover at the front desk. Turnover everywhere in the hotel staff is a major challenge in tight labor markets most hotels operate within, however it seems to especially be an issue at the front desk. Certainly, working at the front desk can be a stressful job as we are dealing with guests who are arriving after a long day of travel disruptions and frustrations and therefore prone to over-reaction to even the smallest challenges. Also, regardless of where any gap in service occurs during a ...

Limited and Select Service Hotels: 5 Ways Your Front Desk Staff Can Increase Direct Bookings and Cut Distribution Costs

Doug Kennedy | January 15, 2019

By Doug Kennedy Like all segments of the hotel industry, limited and select service hotels are seeing distribution costs eating away at top-line profits. Of course OTA's and other third parties are important to the channel mix. However, the colleague at your front desk right now can be your hotel's best resource for increasing the most profitable of all channels, which is of course your direct bookings. Not only do reservations that are made directly have the lowest acquisition costs, but they also tend to have a higher ADR. The following are some action steps and then five training tips for your segment of the lodging industry. Action ...

Train Your Front Desk Team on the “5 Pillars of Hospitality Excellence”

Doug Kennedy | September 17, 2018

By Doug Kennedy When a guest enters your lobby, chances are they are about to have their first human interaction with your hotel's individual "brand." In the past, most guests called to book by voice and then called back multiple times prior to arrival with questions about driving directions, transportation, area restaurants, hours of operations and the like. These days most guests book online and then Google search for answers to these and other pre-arrival questions. Therefore, while I have always believed that the front desk staff played a critical role, now more than ever they truly are the first impression makers, for better or for...

What’s Wrong With Your Hotel Website? Ask Your Call Center Team

Doug Kennedy | August 29, 2018

By Doug Kennedy, KTN and Dave Spector, Tambourine Hotel and resort marketers have a powerful secret weapon, which in many cases is grossly underutilized: their call center reservations team. Even for hoteliers with a robust direct website, call centers remain a vital link in the booking and communications chain, and are a near boundless source of guest information and insight. Hotel and resort websites are great for showcasing amenities, telling a story and providing fundamental property info to a wide array of visitors, but it's crucial for hotel marketers to tap their call center teams for acute feedback about what inbound callers tru...

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