Tips for more productive independent hotel management in 2016

Independent hotel management requires a very unique set of skills and competencies. Hotel leaders must successfully manage team members and their property while guests observe their every move.  Delivering first-class hospitality is challenging but also rewarding, especially when guests return home with great memories about their experience.  Great hotel leaders are always searching for ways to improve themselves professionally, motivate their team members and enhance the service delivered to their guests.  As you prepare for 2016, here are some tips for improving your productivity and independent hotel management.

Plan for success daily

Time management is difficult to master, but it’s one of the most important skills for successful independent hotel management.  Every day there’s always more to do than can physically be done, so many operators feel like they’re constantly playing catch up.  Moving forward, instead of trying to check off items on a never-ending To Do list, start creating daily plans that segment tasks and outline achievable goals.  This approach makes day-to-day operations more manageable, allows you to measure your productivity and holds you more accountable on a daily basis.

Start with 5-10 of the most important responsibilities that must be taken care of that day, such as scheduling vendor appointments, revising your monthly marketing plan and doing competitor rate analysis.  Over time, as you become more efficient during the workday, add more tasks and responsibilities to your list.  Additionally, start recommending this daily planning tactic to your team members to help improve their productivity.  Daily planning will not only help you work faster and accomplish more, it will free up more time to engage and build relationships with guests.

Get more out of meetings

Meetings are supposed to be informative and helpful, but unfortunately, too many transform into time-wasting, productivity-killing get-togethers.  As you know all too well, independent hotel operators don’t have time to waste, so maximizing time and controlling the flow is the best way to get the most out of meetings.  Whether it’s you, a team member or vendor hosting the meeting, two items are needed to ensure it’s productive: an agenda and expected length of meeting time.  Meeting without a purpose or timing expectation is a recipe for wasted time.

When hosting team member meetings, think about who needs to attend and what needs to be communicated.  To keep meetings focused, either hold short, small meetings that only include team members who are essential to the discussion or structure larger meetings where the most impactful topics are discussed first so those who are not needed for the remainder of the session can return to work.  And most importantly, make sure your message is clear and concise.  Meetings are essential for keeping team members on the same page so hotels operate efficiently, but it’s the responsibility of leaders to ensure they are effective and deliver value to everyone involved.

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