Hotels, guest houses, restaurants are all very demanding areas of the service sector, where it is essential to provide good service to guests. Due to the nature of tourism, your business will be held up as examples of either good or bad service. And unfortunately, once you are known for bad service it is very hard to change this reputation.
In the hospitality industry, the majority of positions require employees to be able to deal directly with guests. They will consider your service good when you give guests more than they expect. They will regard your service as poor if they receive less than what they expect. And if a guest receives only what they expect, they will not regard this as special, but simply as their right.
Every establishment should ensure that its staff are aware of the extremely positive effects of exceptional service. What makes the difference between a pleased and a disappointed guest is the difference between good and poor service. Consider that the actions of all workers have a direct influence on the guest experience.
Never forget the power of word of mouth
90% of people with a serious complaint will not come back to an establishment if they can get the same product anywhere else. They’re also likely to tell colleagues, peers and other potential customers about their negative experiences. Guests who feel happy with the product or service, on the other hand, will tell others about their positive experience, particularly others who may be on the market for the same product or service.
The customer is not always right, . . . but is always the customer.’
~ Ron Zemke
How do our Hospitality clients judge good service?
It is important to remember that guests do not only pay for the product they receive but for the satisfaction they get from that particular product.
When a visitor has used a hotel room, eaten a meal or travelled to a particular destination, all that remains is a memory of that event. If the memory is a good one it will raise the value of the guest’s experience and vice versa for a bad experience. Know that after the visitor has left, a bad experience is really hard to repair.
Sometimes guests may seem irrational because they have fixed ideas about their needs and expectations. However, every guest usually wants the same thing and that is a good product and efficient, friendly and helpful service.
Preventing bad service
Preventing bad service is obviously better than trying to fix an issue. For this reason, every staff member involved in the service industry must be aware of the 7 negative behaviour patterns that will lead to bad service.
1) Don’t Care
Apathy describes a “don’t care” attitude. People who are apathetic only do the job because they have to. Whether the guest leaves satisfied or not doesn’t matter to them. The guest is a nuisance to apathetic staff, and they will only do the minimum they have to do.
Enthusiasm is the opposite of apathy.
2) Being Rude
Rudeness can take on a number of forms and can range from just ignoring a guest to verbal abuse. Ignoring the guest is the most prevalent type of rudeness and is most often displayed when staff are busy. People who are disrespectful in this manner sometimes don’t even realize why they are doing so. Typically, individuals who use verbal abuse are frustrated, under stress or in a bad mood.
Being respectful is the opposite rudeness.
3) Having a cold attitude
Individuals who exhibit coldness do what they need in an effective and suitable manner, but they do not smile or show warmth. Provide warm, polite and genuine service to counteract coldness.
A superior person treats guests as if they are unimportant or stupid. Often, service providers feel that a specific guest does not suit their usual guest’s profile and treat him or her as if he or she does not belong.
Always show respect to the visitor.
5) Robotic Behaviour
A person is robotic when he or she does the job according to the exact procedure required, without displaying any personality or individuality.
Have a caring attitude towards the guest at all times.
An inflexible person sticks precisely to the rules. In order to please the visitor sometimes rules have to be bent or broken. Always be imaginative and versatile.
7) “Pass the buck” staff members
A “pass the buck” staff member is a person who does not take responsibility for assisting or working out an issue and passes it on to someone else. Take accountability always.
Common phrases that reflect poor guest service.
There are 12 common phrases that reflect bad guest service. These phrases may be spoken out loud, but are most commonly communicated via body language because the staff member is thinking them.
- I don’t know
- I don’t care
- I can’t be bothered
- I’m too busy
- I don’t like you
- Hurry up
- I know everything
- We don’t need to kind here
- We can’t do it
- It’s not possible
- It’s against the rules
- Make up your mind
The best method to counteract negative feelings or behaviour is through motivation. Although your company should be doing their best to keep staff motivated, at the end of the day it is each and every staff members responsibility to keep themselves motivated.