As a hotel industry sales and guest services trainer, on average I experience six or more hotel stays each month. Although I have clients across all segments of lodging, many of my clients are in the ultra-luxury five star or five diamond categories. Once thing I have learned is that the level of authentic and genuine hospitality, which travelers treasure the most, has little to do with the number of stars or diamonds hanging on a plaque behind the front desk. In fact, Ive experienced some of the most memorable service encounters at economy lodging properties, whereas I find that hospitality too often falls short at ultra-luxury properties and instead feels scripted and robotic.
To their credit, most hotel operators seem to be working hard to improve the overall quality of the 'physical product' such cleanliness, amenities, F&B offerings, and comfort of the guest room itself. Perhaps this is due to sincere concern for guests, but I suspect it is also out of an awareness of the impact of online guest reviews and social media postings. That being said, as a frequent traveler I still experience inconveniences just about every time I stay in a different hotel, which for me is usually about 6 different times per month.
The reason I train everyone to love guests 'buts' is because when we can manage to get a good 'but' out of a guest, that means that we have shown the guest we are asking because we truly care and want to know. Let me explain...
The transformation of the stay of a guest into a positive holistic experience is, no doubt, a formula of success to achieve the differentiation and positioning of the hotel in the current hotel market. This can only be achieved provided that the guest reaches the longed-for emotional states such as feeling pampered, cared for, understood and, above all, important.