One of the best books I’ve come across is The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, which was first published in 1989 and is a great, business and self-help book written by Stephen Covey. Whilst passing by my bookshelf I happened to read its name and it got me wondering as to what would be the most effective habits of hoteliers in a snapshot, or actually what large hotel companies want in each and every manager they have, and here are some qualities that I’ve seen in distinguished hoteliers who stand out in the hotel industry, the true leaders in the fascinating world of 5 star hotel operations
Although grooming in the traditional sense refers to the outer appearance and body language of a person, most young hoteliers in 5 star hotels are very well groomed nowadays with sharp haircuts, designer shoes and lingering designer cologne smells. This outward designer appearance is understood and allowed as it is trendy, however there is an inner grooming which truly stands out in the distinguished hoteliers, and that is their gentleness and the liberal use of these three words THANK YOU, PLEASE, AND SORRY.
These 3 words are good enough to understand the grooming of these special people. They look smart in suits on the outside and use these words more liberally in their communication, and it works. These words are an essential part of hospitality, and only a very well groomed person will tend to use either of these words whenever required, as these words are hallmarks of giving respect to others, as well as present an aura of ‘lack of ego’ in the person, both of which are required in front of guests.
The entire concept of good 5 star hotels is designed around Warmth, and how to maximize it for the guest, and then to charge for it accordingly. Millions are spent in training of the same every year. However, the distinguished hotelier exuberates warmth naturally, with the ease of something as simple as just a smile, or an encouraging observation, maybe even a joke. A welcoming smile and clear eye contact, with the above grooming is more than enough for any guest to take note of the person. Warmth inside a person also allows the person to be more sensitive in times of issues and complaints, and it helps the person to take care of their team better too, encouraging better service all around.
A true leader has an undying passion about his / her work, in any field. This passion helps them break beyond boundaries and achieve success. Whilst passion is a good thing if it motivates you, a good leader knows when to be passionate about a goal and when to disassociate themselves from it too. In the hotel industry, the most important quality that makes a good leader into a great one is when that person can set their passion aside for a moment and listen and work with their team for a better result. The team is the only thing that he/she needs to command in the hotel industry, and they need to be able to execute their goal with full support from their team. Therefore they must only be passionate about their team, and the team below will execute everything perfectly, under their guidance.
There are people who run away when they are scared of an issue, then there are those who hold their nerve in a moment of fear. For a hotelier running away from a situation could mean hiding in the office when there are angry guests outside when a mistake is made by staff of the hotel, whereas the effective leader goes up to the guest, apologises and claims responsibility for a mistake that happened under their watch. Then they continue to resolve the problem effectively and immediately with sharp intellect, personal warmth, and gentle charm
Public Speaking Skills
All good leaders develop this habit out of addressing meetings with clients or staff in hotels. However just speaking in front of a crowd is not enough, the speech must make an impact or the exercise is a futile waste of time for everyone. To make that impact distinguished hoteliers work on their phrasing and how to get the message across. This attention to detail in communication is what makes them revered.
An honest leader is the most liked leader. Diplomacy has its own requirements many times in business, however as far as communication in a 5 star hotel goes, being a straight and honest person receives the highest level of respect from staff and even more from guests. For example, If the hotelier can be honest and let the guest know that there will be a delay in a particular service, the guests like it too. They may be upset to hear this, but they will be far more upset if they find out that there was diplomacy or a lie involved at any stage of communication. Effective Hoteliers know that they need to be honest most of the time, while knowing clearly where diplomacy will work and has to be employed.
Being on time is literally an art in India. In 5 star hotels most guests are not Indian, and for them being punctual is not just a habit, it’s a way of living. Punctuality is a rare sight around us, and a person who respects other people’s time is often more respected. Hoteliers need this trait even more as they deal with guests from abroad who get upset if their time is wasted, because they have already planned their full day with activity. Distinguished Hoteliers are never late, it becomes a part of their inner grooming with experience, they understand innately that delaying anything in the hotel industry will only make it worse.
7 Habits Of Highly Effective Hoteliers
While these may not be the only traits that make a great hotelier, these are certainly the ones that make them stand out. The ones that seniors, juniors, and even guests notice, because they are rare to find all in one place.