Hospitality Employers Focus On Employee Retention
October 7, 2014
Consider these tips to retain your employees.
By Angela Rose for Hcareers.com
During the economic downturn, most hotel and restaurant employers had bigger issues to worry about than potential staff turnover. Solving problems such as how to reduce costs and entice recession suffering customers to dine out or plan overnight stays took precedence over workforce motivation concerns. While understandable, this prioritization has subsequently placed hospitality employers in an equally difficult position: they are now in danger of losing valuable professionals. In fact, according to The Hay Group, worldwide employee turnover is expected to increase from 20.6 to 23.4 percent. By 2018, the number of global departures is estimated to stand at 192 million.
Fortunately, it’s not too late for any hotel or restaurant manager to prevent a mass exodus. Consider these tips to help you focus on employee retention and reduce the likelihood of devastating turnover at your establishment.
Learn to recognize disengagement.
Dissatisfied employees—the type most likely to seek greener pastures at your hotel and restaurant competitors—are also disengaged. Sometimes defined as a lack of emotional commitment to an employer or absence of desire to contribute to a company’s success, employee disengagement is quite rampant in most industries. A study conducted by Gallup revealed that worldwide, only 13 percent of all employees, or one in eight workers are engaged at work. Sixty-three percent of employees are unhappy and disengaged. Signs that indicate you may have an employee engagement problem on your team include hosts/hostesses with “I don’t care” attitudes, night auditors who frequently miss work, and formerly adept cooks turning out subpar dishes.
Listen to your employees.
If you want to improve employee engagement—and reduce turnover—at your hotel or restaurant, you must first determine what is causing the issue. Do all of your workers—from front desk agents to guest service managers—feel as though their work is valued? Do salary and benefit packages compare favorably with those found at similar hospitality providers in your geographic area? How does your staff feel about the workload and organizational culture? You may find periodic internal surveys and focus groups help you to keep in touch with employee concerns.
Make sure all supervisors have “soft” skills.
While it’s important that you hire executive chefs, assistant general managers, and directors of sales who are authoritative, decisive, and experts in their field, supervisor-employee relationships will suffer if they are not also calm, perceptive, good listeners, open communicators, and generally concerned about the well-being of their direct reports. If your focus groups and internal surveys indicate an issue in this area, you may want to offer your senior staff leadership training with a focus on soft skills.
Recruit new employees carefully.
Whether you’re hiring a line cook, kitchen supervisor, or guest service agent, look for a professional who is a good fit with department and company cultures while possessing the skills and experience necessary for the hospitality job. Including managers, direct supervisors, and coworkers in the interview process can be helpful, as are behavioral interview questions and frank discussions about job seeker expectations.
Related Employer/Recruitment Career Articles:
• How To Create Motivated Employees
• How To Have A Motivational Training Staff
• Why Employees Quit Their Jobs