Updated: May 26, 2020
Early on when I went head first into podcasting full time, I sat down with Stuart Butler on the Fuel Hotel Marketing Podcast in late 2019 when I was a front office manager to discuss how to really bridge the gap between marketing and operations teams! In this blog, you’ll see the show notes and the podcast episode from my show! Enjoy!
1. Hire The Right People
Hire for emotional intelligence and hospitality traits. This means that we need to be more intentional with our interviews so that we may be able to recognize if the potential employee would be a good fit for the brand, guest, team, and company as a whole.
I usually ask the question, “Are you F.A.T.?” (Faithful, Available, and Teachable). I know it’s a little bit of a different question, but it’s something that will show on their resume. For example, with being faithful, you can see how long they have stayed at other jobs. Do they have a string of jobs where they have only been there for a year or less or do they only have a few jobs where they have been there for years? The availability aspect is hard because a lot of new hires who really want a job will say they are available anytime but once they’re hired, they have one of the most complicated schedules. When it comes to teachability, is this person willing to be mentored, to want to gain the knowledge that either yourself or the company has to offer? Are they able to learn from their mistakes and take a little bit of constructive criticism?
By being intentional with our interview questions, one can see if they have hospitality traits. This means by seeing if they are really wanting to serve others before themselves. I like to ask, “if you had 6 months to live, what would you do?” and see if their answers involve lines like, “spend time traveling with my closest friends and family” or if they give a more selfish answer like, “I would go blow all my money, go skydiving, eat all the food I could…” and whatever else they list off not involving friends or family. (I learned this from a guest on my show, Scott Stanfield (The Restaurant GM Coach)
2. Define Your ‘Why’ & Give Your Team A Unified Purpose
When you define your ‘why’ & unified purpose, it gives you and your team a tool and guide to follow, but also used to empower them to make decisions that best serve the guest and the team and/or company. I also love mission statements because it gives everyone something to be accountable to as well as tell you what the company believes in. When this happens, then you will see that each department has the same goal, the same mission but also their own part to play to successfully achieve that mission.
Aligning the team behind a single vision is easier when you have a single scoresheet.
3. Invest In Ongoing Training For All Team Members
We have seen in many places, as well as seeing studies, that when you invest in ongoing training, your team and leadership will become more involved in the continued growth of the brand. Plus, turnover costs in employment can be very costly, so why not invest in your employees? Investing in your staff will likely keep them around longer and you won’t have to worry about the costs to retrain. I believe ongoing training is one of the best moves a company can make. Also, let’s be honest...my generation is HUNGRY for mentorship, constant growth and value. The more you pour into them, the more value they will bring to you and hopefully do the same with someone else down the line.
4. Ensure Effective Communication & Hold Cross-Departmental Meetings
Sometimes we get so stuck in our heads and what we do as a property. The front desk does check-ins/check-outs while housekeeping only cleans rooms or common areas. Well, it’s time to leave that behind for independent brands. Cross-training will benefit your property so much! It ties in with ongoing training. They get to see the whole picture and become equipped to serve the guest and their team in a more effective way that also builds community between everyone. Our front desk team spends almost a week in housekeeping when they are first hired.
5. Lead By Example
When you’re in the trenches with your team, leading by example, you will see all of these aspects start to flow together. When you’re intentional with interviews, your hiring, defining your mission, investing in your team to so that they’ll want to stay, properly communicate with all departments and form a unified bond for the whole property, your flow between operations and marketing will be seamless. Marketing strategies should always incorporate operations and vise versa.
Go to Fuel Hotel Marketing Podcast to hear and see more of their amazing content!