164 episodes

Hospitality Property School is a podcast produced by travel authorities that have come together with decades of hotel, resort, inn and bed & breakfast visitation experience. We have spent 1000’s of hotel nights in properties of all sizes and classes worldwide, conducting countless site inspections for a number of world-class tour and travel companies, as well as received feedback from 100,000’s of customers.

This knowledge has given us a unique insight into the wants, needs and requirements of individual and group travellers, as well as management and employees.

Hospitality Property School Gerry MacPherson

    • Places & Travel
    • 1.7 • 3 Ratings

Hospitality Property School is a podcast produced by travel authorities that have come together with decades of hotel, resort, inn and bed & breakfast visitation experience. We have spent 1000’s of hotel nights in properties of all sizes and classes worldwide, conducting countless site inspections for a number of world-class tour and travel companies, as well as received feedback from 100,000’s of customers.

This knowledge has given us a unique insight into the wants, needs and requirements of individual and group travellers, as well as management and employees.

    Front Office Manager – 18 Ways to Become the Best | Ep. #220

    Front Office Manager – 18 Ways to Become the Best | Ep. #220

    A successful front office manager requires a perfect mixture of skilful hospitality & tight organizational skills, never settling for less than A +.

    I going to show you what you have to do to be a successful front office manager.

    In any hospitality property, first impressions are everything.

    The way your front desk staff greets and attends to guests can make or break the image of your property. And just to make things clear, if you operate a small B & B or inn and you are a one-person operation – you are the front office manages.

    Like the best leaders, a front office manager, with the right knowledge training, and attitude leads by example and from the front.

    If your personality is a perfect mixture of skilful hospitality and tight organizational skills, then working as a front office manager at a hospitality property might be an invigorating and fulfilling career path.

    Success as a hospitality property front office manager, as with many other careers, requires constant improvement and self-evaluation. A successful front office manager at a hospitality property should never settle for less than A +.

    The duties of hotel front office managers can be wide-ranging. Not only are these managers in charge of seeing that new employees get trained properly, but they're also in charge of everything from assigning work schedules to handling finances.

    No two days of working as a hotel front office manager are exactly the same.

    Here are 15 steps the can help make a successful front desk manager?

    1.Improve listening skills and then coach others to do the same

    We all need to not only hear but listen with better intensity. The front desk is the communication centre of every hospitality property. It is the financial centre for reservations and much of the cash activity at many properties. A front office manager must be able to overseer both guest and staff interaction to ensure proper guest service and procedure. Guide those staff that need it, coach, appropriately and increase the two-way communication cycle.


    2.Work towards customer delight

    In any hospitality property, customer service is supreme. The only method that will ensure your guests are satisfied with the service provided by the front desk is if you value your guests.
    •Each guest has to be treated professionally and courteously.
    •Be sure you have time to hear the tiniest problem and resolve it.
    •When you make commitments to customers, - meet them.
    •Train your employees to check-in guests quickly and also accelerate the check out as fast as possible.
    When you are more focused on the requirements of your guests and are ready to accept both positive and negative feedback, you’ll be able to anticipate their needs and fulfil them.


    3.Make sure you and your staff know everything about the property & services

    The most obvious requirement for any successful front office manager is to know all the details about the hospitality property's product & services.

    •Personally inspecting every type of accommodation in your hotel. Learn the differences and potential benefits of each type and how they can be of value to different customers. This tour should be monthly or even weekly to keep you aware of changes in the property and can also help management to be better aware of potential problems.

    •Maintain your awareness of the property of the whole. This includes parking areas, public areas, access points to the hotel and the all-important curb appeal.

    •If you have work with an adjacent restaurant or another external service that is part of your offerings, regularly assess their quality and how it affects your guests’ satisfaction.

    •Effective front office managers take pride in their property and often offer to assist senior management in room...

    • 15 min
    The Right & Wrong Ways to Fire an Employee | Ep. #219

    The Right & Wrong Ways to Fire an Employee | Ep. #219

    Unproductive or poor employees can be a detriment to your business but firing them can be very difficult. Here are tips to do it professionally, gracefully and safely fire an employee.

    If you're an independent hotel, resort, inn or bed and breakfast owner or manager and you're having a problem with an employee, you have two choices:

    •You can try to work with them, and help them improve their performance or,

    •Fire them

    Firing someone is not a decision you can take lightly.


    The cost of turning over an employee can be high; it could cause your employee emotional and financial stress; it could cause distress with your other employees; depending on what country are in, it could open you up to lawsuits, but unfortunately, there are times when this is your only option.


    Continue reading or listening and I will look at ways to fire an employee professionally, gracefully and safely...

    ⇒ TO READ OR LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE ON KEYSTONE HOSPITALITY PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT:

    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/The-Right-Wrong-Ways-to-Fire-an-Employee-219

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    Say hi on social:

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KeystoneHDC

    Twitter: https://twitter.com/KeystoneHDC

    Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/keystone-hospitality-development


    Listen to The Hospitality Property School PODCAST here:

    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/itunes-podcast

    https://www.spreaker.com/keystonehdc


    YouTube
    https://youtu.be/OjSlBlbBHXM


    A Division of Keystone Hospitality Property Development

    • 8 min
    The Best Ways to Upsell | Ep. #218

    The Best Ways to Upsell | Ep. #218

    For many, upselling is a dirty word but if you want to be able to offer your guests amazing experiences, learning how to upsell is a step in the right direction and can increase your bottom line learning.

    Let me share ways for you to improve your upsells.

    Why Should You Want to Learn How to Upsell?

    Upselling will make your guests more satisfied and make your business more profitable.

    A properly trained employee can add apparent value to a room sale that the customer is already willing to make, increasing their stays worth as well as increasing your bottom line.

    This benefits everyone.

    I've heard many employees and owners say they feel uncomfortable trying to upsell, like upsell or cross-sell our dirty words.

    Upselling doesn't have to be a dirty word. In fact, it can help you make your customers happier.
    First of all, I should explain the difference between upselling and cross-selling.

    Upselling is a strategy to sell a more expensive version of something the customer already has.
    For example, going from a standard room to a mini-suite.

    Cross-selling is a strategy to sell products that are different but possibly related.
    For example, if your property has a swimming pool you might offer your guests swimming goggles or swimming caps.

    Here are a few reasons to stop thinking of upsell or cross-selling as dirty words.

    Continue reading and I will share with you other reasons to stop thinking of upsell or cross-selling as dirty words...

    ⇒ TO READ OR LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE ON KEYSTONE HOSPITALITY PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT:

    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/The-Best-Ways-to-Upsell-218


    Get Your INNsider Tips
    http://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/Sign-up-for-INNsider-Tips

    Join one of your private groups
    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/private-groups



    Say hi on social:

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KeystoneHDC

    Twitter: https://twitter.com/KeystoneHDC

    Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/keystone-hospitality-development



    Listen to The Hospitality Property School PODCAST here:

    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/itunes-podcast


    https://www.spreaker.com/keystonehdc



    YouTube

    https://youtu.be/J8j9Xb2G8NY


    A Division of Keystone Hospitality Property Development

    • 10 min
    How to Give Customer Service Your Guests Will Treasure | Ep. #217

    How to Give Customer Service Your Guests Will Treasure | Ep. #217

    If you operate a hotel, resort, inn or bed and breakfast you should know your number one priority for success is offering great customer service along with an unforgettable guest experience. Here are some basics to help reach this goal along with some wonderful examples.

    If you operate any type of hospitality property, your number one priority for success is great customer service.

    Great customer service is an essential aspect of the hospitality industry. The level of service you offer can make or break your hotel, resort, inn or bed & breakfast, so it is imperative that you fine-tune your policies until you hit near-perfection.

    If you don’t, you will lose potential and repeat guests.

    “Social media raises the stakes for customer service”.

    In the old days, if a guest or customer was happy with your service they would tell 3 people. If not, they would tell eleven people. Today, with the advent of social media. If someone is not happy with an aspect of your service, within a day tens or even hundreds of thousands could see this on their timeline.

    Hospitality property owners/managers need to instil best practices for their employees to follow.
    By understanding the following best practices, you and your employees will ensure your customer service reaches a standard that’s not only acceptable to the general public but will also confirm your status as a quality establishment.

    Begin with a warm welcome

    First impressions are everything.

    The first step you need to master and to teach your employees is the appropriate customer greeting. This will be your guest’s first face-to-face contact and could set the tone for their overall experience.

    A good welcome needs to be warm, polite and informed but not fake. If the greeting is overbearing or suffocating it could make a guest feel uncomfortable. It is really important to find a healthy balance, so your guests walk away from the check-in more content and happier than when they arrived.

    In a past episode, I talk about the importance of hiring the right staff. If you would like to refresh your mind then visit How to Interview for Great Employees.


    Continue reading for more of what you can do and to see a few stories of great customer service, from a number of different sources including one of my own...

    ⇒ TO READ OR LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE ON KEYSTONE HOSPITALITY PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT:

    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/How-to-Give-Customer-Service-Your-Guests-Will-Treasure-217

    Get Your INNsider Tips
    http://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/Sign-up-for-INNsider-Tips

    Join one of your private groups
    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/private-groups


    Say hi on social:

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KeystoneHDC

    Twitter: https://twitter.com/KeystoneHDC

    Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/keystone-hospitality-development


    Listen to The Hospitality Property School PODCAST here:

    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/itunes-podcast

    https://www.spreaker.com/keystonehdc


    YouTube
    a...

    • 14 min
    Customer Complaints - How to Handle Them | Ep. #216

    Customer Complaints - How to Handle Them | Ep. #216

    Have you ever had a hotel, resort, inn or bed and breakfast guest standing in front of you complaining and you were not quite sure how to handle it?

    Let me share with you tips you can use, along with some of the most common customer complaints.

    With the continued evolution of online hotel, resort, inn and bed & breakfast review sites, social media, forums, and fuming customers on YouTube, a property's level of guest service is increasingly visible to the outside world.

    For this reason, it is vital that you have a working operation manual with the appropriate policies to handle customer complaints, as well as the properly trained staff who not only welcome guest complaints but actually, encourage them.

    Unfortunately, many hospitality property employees believe the handling of complaints is an unlikeable task but one that comes with the job.

    With proper policies in place and training from day one on how to use these policies, employees can change their view of customer complaints.

    Employees and especially owners of independent hotels, resorts, inns or bed & breakfasts should look at customer complaints as an opportunity.

    "The worst complaints are the ones you do not hear."

    The majority of guests who were not happy with your property did not voice their opinion to the owner or the front desk but instead told their friends, family and colleagues and in more and more cases went online to express their irritation.

    Yes, some customers do complain, thus offering you a chance to find a solution, but what about all those customers who do not say anything.

    This is where training should involve employees to look for unhappy customers and give them the opportunity to complain.

    I have an example, not from the hospitality property but a restaurant, a very well-known restaurant, on the waterfront in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.

    Over the years, I had recommended this restaurant to many people and one day, while eating there, the owner came over to me and said: "Gerry, you send many people our way, do you ever get negative feedback?"

    I said, "No, I don't, why do you ask?"

    He said "I know our restaurant has a great reputation but I also know we cannot do everything right all the time and if I don't know there's a problem, it's very difficult to fix. If you ever get any complaints, please let me know".

    This is a restaurant, but the same applies to hotels, resorts, inns and bed & breakfasts.

    Most people are not comfortable with the idea of being confrontational and would much prefer leaving a property, not saying anything, but never returning.

    So, how can you get a customer, a guest, who was not happy with something tell you?

    There are a couple of ways I have seen work.

    Have a specific e-mail address on the bill, on the evaluation form and in the room's information packet for complaints.
    For example, complaints@myproperty.com

    I've also seen the same idea with a specific telephone number – a complaint hotline.

    The best way is to have employees who can read a guest. This is done with proper training.

    Continue reading and I'll share with you some tips employees can use plus a lot more...

    ⇒ TO READ OR LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE ON KEYSTONE HOSPITALITY PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT:

    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/Customer-Complaints-How-to-Handle-Them-216


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    • 20 min
    Customer Service - Bona fide Techniques | Ep. #215

    Customer Service - Bona fide Techniques | Ep. #215

    Any business can offer good or basic customer service but your guests expect more.

    How can you fulfill their expectations?

    Give me a few minutes – and I’ll share with you wonderful tips for amazing customer service.

    If you have been an owner/operator of a hospitality property for a while, then you might have seen the average hotel occupancy rate fluctuated dramatically over the past couple of years.


    There has been no guarantee of consistent repeat business.


    You may have welcomed new customers, hoped they would enjoy their stay and maybe someday return but have you been asking yourself these questions.


    How can I get them to return?

    And if your customers don’t return …Why?


    You want to ensure that your customers have a wonderful experience at your property and avoid disappointing them by only fulfilling the basics.


    Here are some of the reasons guests might not return, according to a study conducted by the Research Institute for Leisure and Tourism.

    •1 % because of death

    •3 % because of move

    •5 % because of change of habits

    •9% because of the wrong price policy

    •14% because of lack of product quality

    •68 % because of lack of service quality


    Well, if you can say …

    “We only offer quality service, none of these other factors apply and our occupancy rate is always 90% or better”

    …then your business is in perfect shape and you need not read any further.


    If this is not the case…

    Then you might be interested in how both unhappy and happy customers might describe their experience at your property.

    •1 unsatisfied guest tells 10 other persons about it

    •1 satisfied guest brings 3 new guests

    •Delighted guests spend 5 times more money


    “I know my guests and if they were unsatisfied with their experience, they would complain.”

    WRONG!


    Statistically, only 4 out of every 100 guests complain and up to 75 % will choose your competition for their next stay.

    Only 8-20 % stay loyal despite their dissatisfaction.


    So what does this all mean?

    Well simply…

    “Unsatisfied guests do not complain, they just do not come again.”

    How can you ensure your guest will return? Continue reading and I"ll will tell you...


    ⇒ TO READ OR LISTEN TO THIS EPISODE ON KEYSTONE HOSPITALITY PROPERTY DEVELOPMENT:
    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/Customer-Service-Bona-fide-Techniques-215

    Get Your INNsider Tips
    http://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/Sign-up-for-INNsider-Tips

    Join one of your private groups
    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/private-groups


    Say hi on social:

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KeystoneHDC

    Twitter: https://twitter.com/KeystoneHDC

    Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/keystone-hospitality-development


    Listen to The Hospitality Property School PODCAST here:
    https://keystonehospitalitydevelopment.com/itunes-podcast

    a href="https://www.spreaker.com/keystonehdc"...

    • 26 min

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