IAG JANUARY 2016 web - page 10

Cover Story
day hospitality companies inMacau are suffering a significant loss
of revenue as a financial consequenceof failing to achieve this goal.
In preparation for the next wave of mega luxury resorts to enter
the Macaumarketplace, it would be wise to recognize the value of
focussed coaching to groom line employees. Such effective training
would establish talent banks, offer rich learning opportunities and
provide access to external functional experience and knowhow.
Staging and preparing employees to engage the future needs of
the organization and themarket in an applied and dynamicmanner
has to be a priority for all thosewhose organizations are dependent
on delivering outstanding customer service and memorable
experiences.Unfortunately, inmost cases this isawish list item. Few
human resourcedepartmentsareable toarticulate theirdevelopment
initiatives well. So human resources needs to be rethought entirely,
transitioningaway from the focusonhiringquotas,pigeonholingand
giving birth to endless new policies. This has to end if corporations
are to demonstrate market leadership, market growth and healthy
profitability on a sustainedbasis.
Competitivecompaniesneed toget aheadof themarket, notwait
formarket conditions to change or tobe toldwhat todoby theCEO
orManagingDirector. A lesson couldwell be taken here fromBMW,
whichhasattempted to teacheven itsadministrativeandaccounting
staffhow tobe innovative.
Just imagine if youwill all floor employees suchas thosewhodirectly
provide primary level service to guests and customers no longer
deliveringzombie lineplatitudes, but instead their responses toeach
Last month I had the pleasure of travellingwith
Dr Brian To across Asia discussing hospitality and gaming. We
visited three casinos and sevenhotels in four countries, immediately
followed by a debrief in London with a team of five gaming and
hospitality professionals to discuss our trip and the general state of
play of Asiangaming andhospitality.
To say travellingwithDr Towas an eye-opener would be a gross
understatement. It couldbe better described as an education.
His keen eye for detail, immediate grasp of complex issues and
concepts and easy-going yet insightful manner were a delight to
witness.Brian isequallycomfortableamongst 5-star luxuryand2-star,
er, shall we say, “less-than-luxury.” He is a very keen student of the
hospitality industry, talkingwith authority on awide rangeof aspects
of the industry. Facilities, property maintenance, management
culture, food and beverage, service delivery, systems and processes,
marketing, hotel room features and amenities, entertainment – it
was all withinBrian’s ambit.
Every single staff interaction led to a commentary and potentially
a lesson about the industry, not only for myself but quite often the
staffmember concerned!ButBriandoesnotdeliver such lessons inan
authoritative or demeaning way – far from it. He is amanwho loves
life, is thoroughly good-humored anddelivers almost everywordwith
a laugh, a smile or at least a devilish wink. He’s equally comfortable
thinking with a Western mindset or an Eastern one and has the
language skills to communicate withmost of those hemeets across
Asia. Hiswide range of skills includes human behavior, management
culture, leadership and strategy, especially in the hospitality industry
context. I could think of no one better placed to commentate on or
assessanygivenhospitalityproduct –whether that product beameal,
ahotel, a cityor indeedanentire country.
relaxingat theHarvardClubofNewYorkCity
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