Young Hotelier, a great resource for hotel executives, conducted an interview with Dr. Max Hitchins asking him about the top priorities of a successful hotel manager.
1) Focus on your family.
Treat your staff as if they were extended members of your family. Be gracious to those who go beyond their expectations, but also be firm with those who do not take their job seriously.
2) Keep yourself healthy.
Because hotel management relies heavily on interpersonal skills, you must always be feeling mentally and physically refreshed. Even if you are having a bad day, you must have the strength and focus to always be 100% polite, helpful, and constructive to your guests and staff.
3) Greet your guests.
One of the most cost effective ways of making your guests feel valued and welcome is to greet them as they enter the hotel. From the instant the guests arrive on your property, it is your duty to make them feel welcomed and valued. Make sure that the bell-staff offer to assist guests the instant they walk through the front door. Hire a dedicated customer service host(ess) to escort guests who are checking-in to the lobby. For instance, in 5-star hotels in Asia, it is customary for hotel staff to pour guests a cup of tea as they are waiting to check-in. Small things like this greatly improve the guest’s impression of your property.
4) Treat your staff fairly and graciously.
Treat your colleagues as equals—from the GM and CFO all the way down to the valets and busboys. Oftentimes the lower ranked staff feel alienated from the high level management. Take extra time to memorize the names of ALL your staff. It will make their day. Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends & Influence People is a great book on how to develop and enrich interpersonal relationships.
5) Harness the power of the Internet.
According to comScore, over 30% of hotel bookings are made over the Internet via sites like TripAdvisor, Expedia, and Kayak. If you do not adapt to the growing trend of online advertising, you will be gobbled up by your competitors. Hire a dedicated team of Internet marketing experts to make sure your hotel is listed on all major travel sites. You should also personally monitor your hotel’s reviews to be aware of your company’s strengths and weaknesses.