So you’re running a hotel. It can be a lot more stressful than you think. It’s hardly the laugh riot Fawlty Towers was. That’s okay though, you can persevere. Think of your business and what it means to you. Think of the success that can be brought your way. Of course, you’ll have to make people hear of you too.
What you need is a little guidance. Nobody gets this right first time. Especially without much experience in the industry already.
Here are a few tips and tricks to running your hotel business.
First of all, service. Everything else in your hotel can be great, but if the service sucks you are going to lose customers. There are no two ways about that.
The first thing you can do is to set an example. Make yourself a positive and galvanising force in your business. Make sure employees get the same respect you would treat customers with. If they’re happy, they’ll make other people happy too.
Now some people cannot be pleased. This much is certain. Damage limitation should be one of the rarely used tools in your arsenal. If required, use it wisely. Do not give a difficult customer everything they want.
If they return, they will expect to walk all over you. You’re the owner, and ultimately what you say goes.
Now, your stocks and your budget. Try not to run out of any essentials. Make sure the basics are always covered by buying in bulk, wholesale towels for instance. Make sure all rooms are going to get what they need.
If you do food or drink in the hotel, keep your kitchen well stocked but don’t overdo it. The waste food cost may eliminate your profits over any given week. Try to keep a supply of frozen goods, but always have some fresh materials on-hand if required.
Drinks will mostly keep. For items such as orange juice and milk, opt for the long life versions instead. It’ll reduce any waste, as they’ll likely get used by the time their use by date is up.
The rooms are your lifeblood. Other areas can lack a little, but your rooms need to be good to make up for it. Cleanliness is primary over comfort in a lot of ways.
Customers might be able to put up with a bit of a lumpy bed or an uncomfortable chair. They will not tolerate dirty and stained sheets. They won’t tolerate a dirty bathroom, nor a floor covered in dirt and crumbs.
If you can, make the beds match the cleanliness. It can be a little tough to try and focus on both, but you’ll have to if you want to elevate your hotel. Look for beds that can withstand some abuse, but remain comfortable to sleep on. That’s the sweet spot for a long-lived bed that people enjoy.
The real secret to a good hotel though is setting a standard of quality and meeting it consistently. Once you’ve got that covered, improve it, however, possible. It may make time and money to build yourself up to that level, but once you’re there, you’ll know you’ve truly succeeded.