Since the written confirmation of the Opening date, I am now on a roll. Many of my key pillars are signed with the property. For the few remaining, I have candidates that will be interviewed in the coming days or weeks with the hope that I can close on completing that important task.
Afterward, I can look at the next level of hiring but this time using my key executives to submit their teams, do the first interview, adjust their manning and confirm entry dates.
Purchasing will soon proceed with collecting samples so we can "personalize" our Food & Beverage venues and our Rooms.
Pending still are the always difficult to pass, Pre-opening Budget, HOE and IT. In the coming weeks, discussion will again be held to finalize the ‘numbers'.
Together with my DGM, I had dinner with other counterparts in the city last week. We had an interesting discussion on Hospitality Management. Our topic evolved around what you need to be a good manager in Hospitality in China.
I first listened to their arguments. Their belief is that Managers can come from diverse field of work, such as Tourism, Culture, Development Bureau or as we know it Government Portfolios. True that in China the DGM and DFC (as you remember assigned by Owners) may come from these sectors of activities.
However with China's massive growth, many DGMs or DFCs now come from the "field". As the Hospitality Industry continues its rapid expansion in Asia, most Associates and Managers will join the Hospitality field after they graduate from their University with Major in Tourism and Hotel Management.
During the conversation, they approached our ‘field of work' with little knowledge of what it takes to succeed in the world of ‘Hospitality'. To their defense, International 5 Star Hospitality Industry is rather young in China if you compare with Century old Europe or, although younger, the Americas.
I then provided my small ‘grain of salt'.
Our ‘field of work' is, I commented, based on ‘People'. Now many of you have heard this before. And while working in Chicago, Russia, China, I have heard the words "People - Our assets" "It's all about People" "Invest in your People" "People first" and so many more. This is the way I see it:
Associates = People Who Serve People
As we ask our Associates to provide the highest level of SERVICE to guests, they first need to embrace what they do. How?
Emphasize that guests are and will always be the number one focus of all our actions. Without the guest, nothing in our business is meaningful.
Recognize your Associates and their value. Elevate them when need be, motivate them when they perform good actions, share your knowledge so they can learn. No one Associate is above or below. All need to have the same common purpose, serving the guest.
Lead by example and be visible, share time with and address Associate as well as guests.
Show the way with confidence and take time to coach Associate so they can better serve the guest.
Our Associates are our most important assets. Manage them properly and genuinely. Fail to recognize this and you will fail all the way.
Managers = People Who Help People Serve People
Listen, offer advice, coach and follow-up. Don't look down on people.
Guests = People You Serve
A warm welcome will go a long way, good listening will give you plenty of tips, recognition is key to winning repeat guests, and genuine approach is what makes the difference
Leaders = People You Work With
Leaders will guide you to achieve your best. They will push you to find your potential. They will show you the road to take. I had many in my life and each gave me food for thought. Even the one I disliked left their positive mark.
Owners = People You Represent and Serve
Owners are those who own the building and its assets and are to be represented professionally. Our goal is to serve their interest and ensure diligent and efficient management of their investment.
Our mission is to serve people professionally and genuinely helping create loyalty to ensure their return.
I remember in one of my first classes at the Hotel School in Montreal (some years ago) where my teacher summarized the function of a hotelier as such: "A Hotelier's true responsibility is to provide a comfortable shelter to the people, appealing food for the traveller and peace of mind and soul". A bit basic, I thought at the time yet, true in all aspects especially in today's quick and ever changing environment. He continued by adding that "We are the people who can provide a different experience to guest".
Our business foundation and asset is all about people. Not too many professions have the exposure of a 24/7/365 environment. We do. And there is, in my humble opinion, no better business than OURS.