hotel culture

How independent hotels cultivate a winning culture

Independent hotel success is often measured by quantifiable numbers, such as financials, performance metrics and guest satisfaction scores.  However, the definition of success in business is evolving, so while numbers will always be important, hoteliers must also consider the impact culture has on its operations.

A hotel’s culture can influence every facet of its operations, from its ability to attract top talent to the execution of its guest services.  Whether defined or not, every hotel has a culture, but it’s up to independent hotel leaders to cultivate its development.  Here’s what hoteliers can do to ensure they’re cultivating a winning culture:

Communicate and listen

“Communicate and listen” may sound overly simplistic, but it’s vital to establishing a strong and collaborative independent hotel culture.  Hotel leaders are responsible for guiding operations and encouraging team member performance, both of which require excellent communication.  However, developing a productive, community environment also requires leaders to listen to valuable input shared by team members and guests.  Team members and guests can provide diverse ideas and perspectives that add great value to hotel operations.  Collaborative efforts not only produce more in-depth thinking and planning, it encourages stronger hotel team member buy-in and helps align everyone behind one set of common goals.

Show appreciation

Many independent hotels don’t have the resources to provide large bonuses and other perks, but that shouldn’t stop them from showing their team appreciation.  Hoteliers can rely on a variety of affordable tactics to reward performance, keep team members motivated and strengthen company culture, such as:

  • Additional paid vacation & sick days
  • Preferred/flexible scheduling
  • Employer retirement plan contributions
  • Childcare assistance

Rewarding team members doesn’t need to be costly, but it should be purposeful.  Many independent hotels operate on thin margins, but remain successful because their team members feel appreciated for their hard work.  Team member appreciation not only enhances morale for individuals, collectively it sets the tone for a hotel’s culture as a whole.