The hospitality industry is today poised at the edge of an
unprecedented period of growth, change, and development. Like many other
sectors, the hospitality field is now characterized by much more aggressive
competition. As a result, hotels, restaurants, resorts, and other properties
have to take every step possible to leverage the strengths and advantages
available to them in order to maintain a favorable market position.
From the perspective of traditional business analysis, an
organization's workforce is seen as an important asset. However, there are many
elements that can't be taken into consideration in the arithmetic of the balance sheet. For example,
while it may be simple to calculate the size and costs associated with the
workforce, it's much more difficult to express the quality of an employee --
or, for that matter, of an entire team -- in numbers.
Organizations depend on their staff's ability to work
together in an efficient, productive manner. This is particularly true in the
hospitality industry, where service quality is such an important determinant of
success. Your staff's ability to work together as effectively as a well-oiled
machine can mean the difference between success and failure for your business.
In turn, your staff's ability to work well together is
determined, to a large extent, by the attitude and outlook of each individual
employee. Decades of research have shown that happy, involved, and emotionally
invested employees are more likely to be positive assets to the team than are
their alienated, disengaged counterparts.
Furthermore, employees who describe themselves as engaged and fulfilled
are up to 75% less likely to report looking for a new position.
Employers often make the mistake of believing that they
can't influence their employees' attitudes. While it's true that it's virtually
impossible to magically transform a dyed-in-the-wool pessimist into an
enthusiastic team player, there are many small and painless steps you can take
to help make your workplace a more fulfilling environment.
Believe it or not, the process of cultivating a
more engaged workplace begins in the hiring manager's office. While it takes a
broad range of personalities to help run a business, focus as much as possible
on hiring qualified candidates who are enthusiastic self-starters with a
verifiable history of long-term and loyal employment.
If you haven't already, develop a company mission statement. If
possible, solicit input from your team when creating your mission statement.
Try to make your vision as sweeping and far-reaching as you can. Find a way to
connect your business's mission to the larger community. Studies have shown
that jobs that impart a deeper sense of meaning help employees feel more
engaged and fulfilled.
Workplace psychologists contend that nothing saps enthusiasm from
workers more rapidly than feeling unappreciated or being the target of
perceived unfairness. Develop policies and practices that show your support for
the team. Small and large gestures alike can be effective -- whether you're
bringing in gourmet coffee and pastries for the openers or pledging to help
fund your staff's continuing education, your efforts will be appreciated.
studies suggest that when employees feel empowered, they're more likely to
describe themselves as fulfilled, engaged, and loyal. Show your employees that
you value their opinion by soliciting their input. Use a voting system to help
make decisions about the organization's growth and future directions. Begin
using 360-degree feedback evaluations that allow employees to evaluate
managers' performance. Offer ample opportunities for both anonymous and public
comments and feedback from your team.
everything, but it does go along way toward making employees feel appreciated.
Make sure that your compensation policies reflect your commitment to
cultivating an engaged, loyal staff. Reward programs that challenge team
members to excel are another great way to boost your staff's interest and
engagement. Inject a measure of healthy competition into your performance
metrics to keep things interesting, and reward the winners with a generous
It's clear that your organization can benefit from having a
team of engaged, fulfilled employees, but cultivating this level of commitment
takes time and effort. Start with a few small changes, then re-assess some of
your broader policies and practices. Before long, you'll start to see the kind
of positive upswing in your organizational culture that can really pay off in
the long run.