Overpaid CEOs Out, Motivated Employees In (Part 1)
Companies are struggling to improve profitability by cutting expenses, copying competitors, replacing CEOs, and hiring expensive consultants. Unfortunately, most of these efforts have failed to pay off. But a number of hospitality leaders have found a source of competitive advantage. They are leveraging their own employees to find new opportunities for growth.
Two of the ways hospitality leaders are driving top-line growth with their employees are employee crowd sourcing and employee engagement programs. The first of this two-part post explores employee crowd sourcing.
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts' new company-wide innovation program, BLUEWATER, equips 35,000 employees with tools and behaviors needed to ideate, pilot, and refine guest experiences. BLUEWATER sources and pilots ideas through general managers, while also soliciting fresh solutions from elsewhere within the company. They have incorporated this program into all general meetings and staff training. It's working. In a video presentation to staff, a Four Seasons housekeeper in Hong Kong said: "Before BLUEWATER I would go into rooms to make sure they're clean. Now I look for opportunities to wow."
Involving employees in service innovation and design also increases the likelihood of new service success because employees can identify the organizational issues that need to be addressed to support the delivery of the service to customers. And when employees feel that management is interested in their opinions, they'll be more likely take a personal stake in the business. They'll go from feeling like they're working for the man to feeling like they're a part of the team.
Innovation and change puts companies on the offensive. While other brands can add products and services simply to match competitors, hospitality companies that seek out employee input to develop effective new products and services often lead their respective markets. To remain competitive in the hospitality industry requires both innovation in processes to improve service productivity and innovation in offerings to increase revenue. Employees can assist businesses to find innovative ways to accomplish both of these objectives.
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Clarabridge’s customer experience management platform helps hundreds of the world’s leading brands understand and improve the customer journey. Powered by the industry’s most sophisticated customer analytics engine, Clarabridge collects and transforms all forms of customer feedback into intelligence, allowing businesses to activate the voice of the customer across the enterprise. Industry leaders including PetSmart, United Airlines, L’Oréal USA, Virgin Active, Rackspace, and ADP use Clarabridge insights to inform key business decisions. The result: happy, loyal customers.