There's always plenty to do around your hotel. From making sure your guests are taken care of, to coordinating schedules, shifts and more, your hands probably always feel full. While it's nice to keep busy, it's important not to let your schedule get away from you. Good time management helps you strike the right balance of staff with work, so things can get done more quickly and efficiently. And, when more work gets done, your guests will be happier too.
With the right methods-and maybe even a few new tools-your teams can work more efficiently to keep your hotel running right. For example, with just 10-12 minutes of extra planning you can save about 2 hours a day. And by employing technology, like mobile devices, you can increase overall productivity-and guest satisfaction scores, too. Whether it's a small change or a big rollout, utilizing time management practices doesn't have to be complicated. Sometimes the smallest changes can have the biggest impact.
We took a deeper look at some of the best time management methods for hotels, and you can start practicing most of them right now. Let's take a look!
Clear communication is one of the best ways to ensure that your hotel runs more efficiently. From a lost sticky note to a radio that doesn't get turned on after a lunch break, there's plenty of things during your day that can make seemingly easy tasks fall through the cracks. When tasks are communicated clearly, there's less room for misunderstanding. Less misunderstandings ensure that work gets done faster. It can be frustrating not knowing what's going on. You need to be able to reach your team with important to-do's, especially from shift to shift. Keeping track of requests, messages and documents digitally can help streamline communication-even across properties-which will reduce miscommunication and give you more time back in your day. From guest-messaging software to behind-the-scenes digital alerts, there are a number of tools that will enable clear communication for your whole hotel.
Unfortunately, a lot of time in the typical workday, at hotels and at offices alike, is often wasted on tasks that don't help you achieve your goals.
There's only 24-hours in a day and as much as we'd like to be able to add hours to get everything done, the best we can do is help you prioritize what's actually possible to get done during your shift. By taking the time to prioritize the work that's most important to you and your hotel, you'll ultimately save time in the long run-which keeps your day rolling without getting distracted by more trivial tasks. Not only that, but implementing scheduled daily tasks, such as pool or boiler readings, property walks or preventative maintenance can help you combat unexpected maintenance needs-just because you're staying on top of it daily!
Prioritizing and differentiating guest-requested tasks from staff requested items directly affects your guest satisfaction scores and even future bookings-so get them taken care of as soon as possible. Then, you can run down the list of planned tasks and tackle the unexpected ones when they come up. You can use tools like ours to digitally prioritize all of your tasks-which will help your day run smoother. It might be useful to separate your to-do list into easily understandable categories of action items to keep things moving along.
Designate Duties, Delegate Diligently
Delegation is a massive time saver. To ensure efficiency, figure out what tasks can be passed to others-and be realistic about what can get done that day. The Harvard Business Review shares the importance of delegation for a number of reasons, most importantly how beneficial it can be to the entire organization, especially managers. But, unfortunately, "it remains one of the most underutilized and underdeveloped management capabilities."
Standardizing responsibilities and roles within each of your departments is the first step to delegation-when everyone knows their roles and responsibilities, there's less room for duplicated efforts and more space to focus on getting the job done. Take a step back, examine what you can do, and what your team is able to do! Teamwork is essential when there's so much to get done.
As a General Manager, it can be tempting to constantly check up on every department. Instead, pass tasks like guest requests or keeping the lobby guest-ready along to your front desk manager or other department heads and communicate clear expectations. You can take this a step further by posting your expectations where they will be easily accessible, through an app or even with a physical poster in the breakroom.
Micromanaging, at its best, can seriously decrease productivity. At its worst, well... according to an article by NPR: "Studies show lack of autonomy at work elevates stress hormones and can have other negative health effects, potentially even hastening mortality."
As a manager, often times it can be difficult to release control of certain projects or tasks. However, reportsshow that micromanaging can be one of the biggest daily time wasters. Author Brigette Hyacinth shares on LinkedIn that it can be the source of high turnover rates, low morale and decreased trust among employees. So, not only will minimizing micromanaging increase time in your day, but it will also increase trust and morale-which builds a happier team.
A great way to minimize micromanaging is to establish clear standards for your brand or hotel. Brand standards ensure that managers from every department know exactly what needs to get done-making for less miscommunication and more efficient work.
Apps can help you to organize and communicate expectations, so that you don't have to constantly look over your staffs' shoulders. Apps like Quore help you to track your team's results by sharing them via escalating push notifications. So instead of constantly checking up on your team, you can focus on what you really need to get done.
Training & Technology
Modern technology can streamline every area of your hotel and improve everything from guest satisfaction to team communication-unless no one knows how to use it. Your whole team must learn how to use new tools the right way. That's where training comes in. Teaching people how to utilize the tools to do their job is essential. You wouldn't assign a housekeeper to a room unless they knew how to use all of their supplies-and technology is no exception.
Taking some time in the beginning to train can save hours of frustration and time trying to learn on the job. At Quore, we encourage our customers to name someone as the "Quore champion" at the property. Their job is to help train the staff to adopt the tool-and it makes a big difference in adoption!
Get Some Time Back
Prioritizing better time management looks like a lot of things. With clear communication or task prioritization, you can eliminate time wasted through mixups, miscommunications and more. Lead your team with the confidence that they know what they're doing. Trust them to finalize delegated tasks. We know that running your hotel is no easy feat-but by implementing some of these time saving tips, you'll be able to spend time focusing on what matters most, your guests' experience.