Quality relates to the consistent delivery of products and services according to expected standards. In many industries it is people, rather than technology and machines, who deliver quality. The hospitality industry is no exception. Employees in this highly labor-intensive industry have traditionally been needed to deliver the quality expected of the best hotels.
Hospitality leaders want to hire and retain great employees with a positive attitude and the appropriate knowledge and skills, or the ability to learn and acquire them. Remember that great employees will be the best – not the first – applicants to consider for employment, because the “warm body syndrome” to save management time has never been a selection best practice. In fact, new employees, even those with positive “can-do” attitudes, can quickly become disenchanted when they are improperly supervised.
Therefore, a priority is required to develop recruitment and selection processes to bring those staff members onboard who truly want to be successful. However, savvy leaders also know that employees can easily become dissatisfied and disinterested in effectively serving guests if they are not treated with genuine respect by their managers.
Here are some suggestions about how hospitality leaders can encourage new employees to be successful and to meet quality standards on the job.
Know and share responsibilities applicable to the new position. A current and accurate job description is a must during the recruitment process. Those beginning new jobs are looking for confirmation that their employment decision was a good one, and any surprises about work requirements after they are employed are not viewed positively.
Don’t over-promise during the recruitment process. If applicable, indicate a willingness to provide ongoing professional development activities to those who desire these opportunities after they can perform the jobs for which they were initially employed.
Consistently utilize “employer of choice” strategies, and not just to impress job applicants. Examples include talking about the organization’s mission, respecting employees, and aligning them with the mission. As well, remember the concept of “back door” marketing: the spirit of hospitality should be shared with those coming in the back door (employees) as well as with the guests who enter through the front door.
Be a facilitative leader (also called servant leader). Ensure employees know what to do to help move the organization toward the mission, and then provide training and necessary resources, such as appropriate time, equipment, and supplies. Leaders should be there when needed and evaluate progress, but they should not micro-manage.
Allow aligned staff members to participate in the decision-making process. How might the department do its fair share of helping the hospitality organization achieve business plan goals? How can work processes be improved?
These are examples of employee planning inputs that can help your organization move ahead quickly and provide the best quality possible.