The main focus of many hospitality training programs must be the encouragement of Front of House staff to be more pro-active when it comes to anticipating the needs of guests and freely offering additional, relevant information.
However to be able to deliver pro-active hospitality services, Front of House employees must first have a very strong working understanding of their “product.”
This obviously means they must first be capable of answering the question: “What is our product?” Unfortunately a lot of employees nowadays believe that they are working in the “room rental” business. While it’s true that guests are in fact paying for “time” spent in your “space,” what they are actually purchasing is their very own personal travel experience; an experience affected by the destination, location, local points of interest, attractions, and needless to say the hotel features and amenities outside of their room.
When Front of House staff understand their product , they can supply guests with the information and “local insider’s tips” which are important to any out of town visitor. Unfortunately the majority of hotels and resorts today appear to put little, if any, energy into training their employees to understand the product. Maybe they believe that “the locals” ought to have this information already.
Yet past experiences shows us that simply because an employee is a local resident it doesn’t necessarily mean they are automatically an expert. Therefore, Managers and Human Resource Departments must work closely with their Front of House team by:
- Outlining forthcoming community events and activities at pre-shift meetings.
- Place a local and hotel events calendar in an area which is easily accessible by all staff.
- Have Front of House Staff attend local area attractions and entertainment complexes.
- Ask members of the local business community, who also provide services to your guests, to come and provide details to your employees.
- Hotels with restaurants should hold in-house food tastings. It can also be beneficial to ask Chefs from other local, popular restaurants to come in and do the same.
- Develop a product knowledge trivia questionnaire that will test your employees working understanding of your product.
- Any time your guests have a new question or request, record the question plus the answers or solutions in a front desk log-book or give daily reports so that other staff can keep updated.
- Large hotels and resorts, may find it more beneficial to ask representatives of each department, for example F&B, activities director, sales directors, to speak with front of house staff at departmental meetings so that any new or upcoming programs, services and events can be explained.
By simply delivering training session in the topic area associated with understanding your product, you will be supplying your Front of House team with the vital tools they need to enable them to not just answer guest questions, but likewise be able to pro-actively offer extra, useful information that will help to make your guest’s stay that much more fulfilling.
All of ETC’s ‘Confidence in English’ Hospitality training programs include sessions which focus upon Koh Samui’s popular attractions so contact us today and discover how an investment in an ETC…English Training Program can give your business a strong competitive edge and help develop your guest loyalty through customer care and guest satisfaction