First and most important we, and all our people, must fully understand what we sell in our industry: (sleep & food) and to whom we sell it to.
Secondly, we also must understand who will do these personalized services and how we satisfy the request of the two most personal needs of ours and of our customers’ bodies, sleep & food (500 people in the hotel, we are faced with 500 different tastes, likes & dislikes).
Statistics, financial analysis is necessary however should not be put before the core business of the hotel. Profits must be made but everyone involved must fully understand how / where profits are made in this industry (as an example) how many cups of coffee need to be sold to pay for silly administrative miscalculations or over controls.
Once we have understood the above requirements, we will not make basic mistakes to cut costs but will search for good people /resources that will go out of their way to proof themselves and provide added quality and value for our customers / hotels and for themselves as well.
People with vision and courage find a perfect environment to seize good deals and stand-up new lines or promote new products within the hotel. The best advice for hotel operators during difficult times is to look within their work force and spot those people with the entrepreneurial potentials to drive and grow the new product / business. This could be a new market segment, a series of events / packages, a revamped outlet, a new entertainment, etc…
At the end, in this industry we always go back to the strength of our people as by ourselves we can achieve very little. Our people are the ones who make us successful and a poorly handled / motivated labor force during this time will have a very long negative effect on business results even after the economy improves. People relay on the operator and the operator relay on people, “one team one way” will go far …..
People with entrepreneur skills don’t relay on traditional compensation structure but much more on results, incentives and partnerships.
How long before the hotel industry will introduce the new millennium people’s values like flexible working time, work from home arrangements and other out of the box trends? This will come in our industry as well and we will benefit from it.
Enterprises-wide human resources processes and trainings, traditionally an area of underinvestment by the hotel industry, will be essential.
Never underestimate the strength and potential of the workforce, it takes respects, encouragement, understanding / provide to their needs in order to get their entrepreneur strengths.
From past experience, it has been noticed that normally the entrepreneur individuals / elements don’t prosper through organized labor union organizations but directly through their own initiatives and driven by the desire to proof their capabilities.