By Frederic Gonzalo: A January 2013 study by Adobe looked at how various industries performed across various devices and how these industries’ websites performed in certain specific categories, including site stickiness, smartphone and tablet traffic, among others. In the travel and hospitality industry, we tend to focus and compare ourselves between transportation companies, i.e. airlines, car rentals, trains, etc. hotel chains and perhaps destinations (DMOs). But how do we compare with financial services, retail, high tech or perhaps even media & entertainment? That’s where this study becomes enlightening.
By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng: Sometimes in order to understand what sets the bar for good service in the hotel industry, you have to gaze upon the dark underbelly of what is truly and horrifically bad. It's all about contrast; the yin and the yang. To know what would qualify your establishment as a lemon, you need only taking one passing look at Fawlty Towers, the 1970s 12-episode British sitcom starring the magnetic John Cheese as the titular rural English B&B owner and operator, Basil Fawlty.
By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng: For those unfamiliar, Downton Abbey is a spectacularly produced period drama set on the titular aristocratic estate just outside of London in the period in and around World War One. Setting aside any spoilers, my focus today is on the lessons learned applicable to our jobs some one hundred years after the time period of this show. Without any further convincing or buttressing, let's dive in and see.
By Frederic Gonzalo: Back in 2009, the folks at Tourism Australia came up with was is still today considered one of the best contest ever held on the web, social media or anywhere else, for that matter: by submitting a video for why you should be chosen, this gave you automatic entry in a contest where the winner could work a complete year, all expenses paid, as caretaker for a remote, paradise-like island off the coast of Queensland, on the Grand Barrier Reef. The outcome? More than 14,000 video applications across key international markets, including the UK, USA, Europe, Japan and China, among others.
By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng: Rethink the idea of the concierge and how we can further partition this title to enhance a guest's experience. By giving your patrons an exact channel to address each specific need, you will not only better alleviate any worries, but heighten their perception of how excellent your hotel really is. Here are three contemporary examples for you to consider.
By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng: Hoteliers need to band together. An honest, but unfavorable review is acceptable, and should be considered a teaching tool to improve operations. However, reviews that are clearly suspect should be withheld from publication. The pendulum has swung too far to the favor of the reviewing agencies, who now wield too much unregulated power.
By Frederic Gonzalo: Regardless of your religious affiliation or beliefs towards the Catholic religion, the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI on February 28 and the imminent start of the next conclave could potentially represent a tsunami in the world of Canadian tourism. How are the election of the next Pope and the Canadian travel industry related? Well, what if the next pope was Canadian, for example?
By L. Aruna Dhir: They are different by just a single letter, but ‘attitude’ and ‘aptitude’ are undeniably the two most important cogs in your wheel that you should be wise enough to keep oiled, always. Come to think of it, ‘attitude’ scores slightly more in the stakes covering up admirably any gaps left gaping wide in the ‘aptitude.’ But there are several prickly adversaries that hide just under the skin and in corners of our mind, ready to take shape and form and pounce on all the goodness and greatness we endeavour to embody. So who are these fellas who threaten to sink our smooth-sailing professional ship? Let’s get to know them better.
By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng: As hoteliers, we strive to create an environment for our consumers that is the opposite of what the serpent's facade embodies. And yet, there are still many traits of the snake which can be applied to your business to generate positive results. Perhaps the Year of the Snake, even with all the negative connotations, will prove to your year to shine!