While a satisfied guest may be pleased with their experience at your luxury hotel, that doesn’t mean they’ll return.
How do you make sure you’re finding and hiring the most exceptional hotel staff to run the show?
With the right strategy and process, you can ensure you’re hiring only the best of the best for your hotel.
1. Hire staff with high EQ (Emotional Quotient)
Recruit emotionally intelligent staff since it plays a dual role in luxury hotel industry.
First, a high level of emotional intelligence is essential to anticipate what a customer’s specific needs or wants are for successful service delivery.
Hotel guests – especially high-end guests- are ever more difficult to satisfy.
If you want to have more loyal guests
, you need services that “surprise and delight” through highly personalised touches.
Secondly, a high level of emotional intelligence on the part of managers is essential for building a strong team that is motivated to give its best in all parts of the hotel.
When your staff work in a team where their feelings are valued and there is a culture of empathy and understanding, employees are more likely to perform at their best.
2. Ask real life example questions when hiring staff
Traditional interview questions such as “Why should we hire you?” allow a candidate to tailor their response directly to what you need.
What should you do then?
Ask questions about how they would deal with customers facing an issue (situational questions).
For example, what would you do if guests are faced with a broken lift or how would you deal with an angry guest?
Pay attention to their response and conversation style. Their answers will show their decision making, problem-solving and communication skills.
3. Tie your staff's actions to the hotel’s overall performance
You should coach “constancy of purpose” to your employees by showing them that what they do every day in the workplace has a big effect – such as impacting the guest experience and the hotel's revenues.
For example, staff should always introduce themselves by their first name and address guests in an appropriate fashion, by title and surname if necessary.
You can encourage staff to use their initiative and show their personality while remaining true to the ethos and brand values of the hotel.
4. Your staff must personalise their welcome
Delivering personalised experiences not only helps hotels meet the needs of high-end travelers, it also creates an environment where guests feel welcomed and well looked after, to the point that they are likely to spend more.
Reception staff should know if a guest has stayed before and use a “Welcome back!” if appropriate.
If they remember that they love coffee “Would you like a fresh coffee sent to your room in a few minutes?” will work wonders.
Conversely if it’s a new guest the conversation may centre around orientation or things to do in the area.
If your hotel has a particular tagline or brand message, encourage staff to think how their actions align to the message.
5. Encourage friendship among your staff
According to this report
, multiplex relationships, driven by having a lot of coworkers who eventually developed into friends, significantly increased employees’ performance, as judged by their supervisor.
Group staff based on their friendship, especially on the front desk, instead of separating them.
A strong rapport between colleagues will draw guests in.
Great guest service in the hotel/accommodation industry begins and ends with great people.
As long as you are clear about your values and tailor your recruitment strategy to them, you’ll be well positioned to hire top-notch hotel staff to run your property.
Hard skills like proficiency in reservation software or concierge training - can be learned.
Warmth, empathy, teamwork, conscientiousness and optimism are the soft skills your hotel staff members should have in order to be truly exceptional.