Forget the hospitality training template, the hotel housekeeping checklist and even the standard operating procedure guide, sometimes what you need to develop effective training for staff is a little inspiration.
The world’s most legendary hoteliers have gotten where they are by understanding the important role that their staff play in the customer experience. Satisfied, well-cared-for staff make for satisfied, well-cared-for guests. If you want the experience of staying at your property to be extraordinary, you have to make the experience of working there the same.
To help you in creating training that is itself an inspiration to your staff, here are 25 inspirational quotes about hospitality training from legendary hoteliers.
‘Fill the Earth with Light and Warmth’
“Don’t hire people to fill a position, select people to fulfill a dream and to serve a purpose.” —Horst Schulze, former president of The Ritz Carlton Hotels and CEO of Capella Hotel Group
“Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to.” — Sir Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Hotels
“Motivate them, train them, care about them, and make winners out of them… they’ll treat the customers right. And if customers are treated right, they’ll come back.” — J. Willard Marriott, founder of the Marriott Corporation
“Leadership is creating an environment in which people want to be part of the organization and not just work for the organization. Leadership creates an environment that makes people want to, rather than have to, do.” — Horst Shulze
“It has been, and continues to be, our responsibility to fill the earth with the light and warmth of hospitality.” — Conrad Hilton, founder of Hilton Hotels
‘People Create Memories, Not Things’
“The best advice is often the compliments received, and they are often about an associate who did something exceptional. I tell my teams that it’s the random acts of kindness, the unexpected, that people remember most.” — Barry Sternlicht, founder of the W Hotels & Resorts
“People create memories, not things. If we ask guests what color the carpet was in their guest room, they probably won’t know. The real value comes from the ladies and gentlemen who bring that hotel to life. Ten percent is the platform, but the rest is people.” — Simon Cooper during his tenure as chief operating officer and president of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C.
“Success seems to be connected with action. Successful people keep moving. They make mistakes, but they don’t quit.” — Conrad Hilton
“Never say no when a client asks for something, even if it is the moon. You can always try, and anyhow there is plenty of time afterwards to explain that it was not possible.” — César Ritz, king of luxury hotels
“The number one reason our model works is its commitment to our guest’s satisfaction. If something goes awry, and sometimes things do, our team strives to make it right. Further, on the reception desk is my card, with my email address on it. If there are issues, email me. I will get back to you. Diamond Resorts has been successful due to our service delivery to our guests. They are the leaders, we are the servers.” — Stephen Cloobeck, founder, Diamond Resorts
‘Listening is Critical to Leadership’
“I think of culture as guardrails. The culture of a company is what you stand for, essentially the ground rules so that people know how to operate. You give them a direction and boundaries. The trick is having an intense alignment around vision, mission, values and the key strategic priorities. My job as CEO, simply stated, is to create the right culture, set the tone, the high-level strategy.” — Christopher J. Nassetta, president and chief executive of Hilton Worldwide
“The important thing is to engage employees. Don’t go in saying you know this and you know that, and this is the way it will be. Listening is critical to leadership, and so is staying authentic. You do that and you will get loyalty, and then your role as a leader will be easy.” — Mark Hoplamazian, CEO, Hyatt Hotels Corporation
“Our people are our greatest asset. We’ve got to have strong people who are passionate about what they do. As a leader, you’ve got to motivate them.” — Gail Mendel, president and CEO for Wyndham Destination Network
12 Rules for Success
12 rules for success crafted in 1964 by Bill Marriott, ex-CEO and executive chairman of Marriott International:
“Challenge your team to do better and do it often.”
“Take good care of your associates, and they’ll take good care of your customers, and they’ll come back.”
“Celebrate your peoples’ success, not your own.”
“Know what you’re good at and keep improving.”
“Do it and do it now. Err on the side of taking action.”
“Communicate by listening to your customers, associates and competitors.”
“See and be seen. Get out of your office, walk the talk, make yourself visible and accessible.”
“Success is always in the details.”
“It’s more important to hire people with the right qualities than with specific experience.”
“Customer needs may vary, but their bias for quality never does.”
“Always hire people who are smarter than you are.”
“View every problem as an opportunity to grow.”
Drawing inspiration from some of the industry’s legends will hopefully keep you inspired as you create or refresh your hospitality training. Inspired ideas lead to inspired staff and delighted guests.