Anticipate their needs and wishes before they have a chance to ask
There are many ways to build the loyalty of regular guests to your hotel. These are valuable guests to keep – they tend to be less price-sensitive than other guests and they promote your brand when they talk about hotels with colleagues or friends. The first important rule is for hotel employees to anticipate their needs and wishes before the guest has a chance to ask. Guests should feel cared for.
Psychological studies have suggested that people remember the beginnings and endings of conversations better than what’s said in the middle, meaning that the “hello” and “goodbye” parts should be as polite and human as possible, preferably personalised. This is especially important when the guest departs the hotel. A list of appropriate expressions that fit the hotel brand can be rehearsed by front-desk employees, to be spoken at the right times. Yet speed is vital in the hotel business. For example, email reservations must be replied to immediately – and politely.
Hotel managers need not be in a hurry to fill every staff position when it becomes vacant. The behaviour of one team member hurriedly employed who is unsuited to the position can be hugely damaging to the hotel’s reputation.
[pictured: Berchtesgaden Resort, Germany; photo courtesy IHG]