When It Comes To Hos­pi­tal­ity “Lit­tle Things Mean A LOT”

Hospitality 9ja - - World Destination Review -

Of all of the slo­gans used by ho­tel com­pa­nies over the years, for me the most pithy has to be the one that Sher­a­ton used in its pre-star­wood days: “At Sher­a­ton, lit­tle things mean a lot.” When it comes to suc­cess in the ho­tel and lodg­ing in­dus­try, it truly is the smallest de­tails that make the big­gest dif­fer­ences. As my fre­quent read­ers know, I of­ten write about what I call the “vanil­laiza­tion” of the phys­i­cal ho­tel ex­pe­ri­ence as brands copy­cat each other in the race to add the lat­est, nifti­est new fea­tures and ameni­ties. Yet one as­pect of a ho­tel stay that re­mains as a true dif­fer­en­tia­tor is a pro-ac­tive at­ten­tion to the smallest de­tails of guests' stays.

While read­ing clas­si­cal his­tor­i­cal ction re­cently, I came upon what was for me a new word: Punc­til­ious. When I pressed the word on the screen of my Kin­dle Fire, the rst deni­tion that came up on­line was: “Show­ing great at­ten­tion to de­tail or cor­rect be­hav­iour.” Right away I knew this was the per­fect word for my vi­sion of the ideal ho­tel that thinks of ev­ery­thing. For me, here are some of the char­ac­ter­is­tics of a truly punc­til­ious ho­tel where “lit­tle things mean a lot” when it comes to in­creas­ing loy­alty and fos­ter­ing a pos­i­tive on­line rep­u­ta­tion.

A ho­tel where: Web de­sign­ers make the street ad­dress easy to nd on the mo­bile ver­sion of a ho­tel web­site (for GPS pur­poses) along with the di­rect, lo­cal phone num­ber. An up­dated TV chan­nel guide is eas­ily found in the room. House­keep­ers check to make sure that the TV re­mote is work­ing and that the bat­ter­ies are not dead.

House­keep­ers also check to make sure the alarm clock is not set from the previous guest's stay, which could oth­er­wise re­sult in an un­wanted early morn­ing alarm. When asked for ex­tra cof­fee pack­ets, house­keep­ers also au­to­mat­i­cally bring up fresh cof­fee cups and condi­ments. Front ofce col­leagues are able to of­fer travel tips such as the best routes for avoid­ing trafc and re­al­is­tic travel times to ma­jor points of in­ter­est, fac­tor­ing in con­struc­tion de­lays.

Col­leagues who can rec­om­mend with condence the lo­cal restau­rants, shop­ping and at­trac­tions in­stead of sim­ply pro­vid­ing a list.

A late check­out can be ex­tended in ad­vance be­fore guests re­tire af­ter a late night out, even if for an ex­tra fee.

Guest rooms fea­ture plenty of elec­tri­cal out­lets, or if the ho­tel is older, where power strips are made avail­able.

Ta­ble tents of­fer spe­cial ameni­ties that guests re­ally need these days, even if of­fered at an ex­tra cost, such as univer­sal phone and lap­top charg­ers, con­tact lens cases and so­lu­tion, dis­tilled wa­ter for those who use CPAP breath­ing ma­chines, and ear plugs for the spouses of those who do not but should!

Speed dial but­tons on the guest room phones are pro­grammed to ac­tu­ally dial the de­part­ments that match the la­bels.

Bar menus of­fer ap­peal­ing non-al­co­holic drinks be­yond just soda and cof­fee for the des­ig­nated driver or for those in re­cov­ery.

Bell­staff of­fer to as­sist with lug­gage by ask­ing “May I show you to your room?” in­stead of treat­ing guests like weak­lings and say­ing “Did you need help with your lug­gage?”

Wait­staff who say “What did you think of your en­trée?” and not just say “How was it, good?” or “Still work­ing on that?”

Host or hostesses that greet pa­trons din­ing alone with “Wel­come! Are you ready to be seated?” in­stead of re­mind­ing them of their lone­li­ness by say­ing “Just one???”

Sig­nage is easy to fol­low helps guests nd their way to their rooms and around the ho­tel.

Ice ma­chines are well main­tained and work­ing.

Air­port vans are large enough to ac­com­mo­date the ac­tual num­bers of guests who rely on the ser­vice.

By fo­cussing on the “lit­tle things” such as these and em­brac­ing a cul­ture of con­tin­u­ous im­prove­ment, your ho­tel will be as­sured of al­ways be­ing suc­cess­ful even when a newer one opens nearby.

When it comes to suc­cess in the ho­tel and lodg­ing in­dus­try, it truly is the smallest de­tails that make the big­gest dif­fer­ences

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