During the 35-plus years I’ve been in the lodging industry there have been lots of interesting ups and downs. The industry continues to evolve as new technology, new attitudes, and new ideas blossom. With all the challenges and changes I’ve seen, the one thing I’ve noticed is that nothing has really changed at all.
Though it seems like nothing is the same, it’s my experience that the foundation of the industry hasn’t changed. Hosts welcome guests, provide safe and clean accommodations, and offer hospitality that covers a range of service options. Guests arrive with their expectations and needs. That part of the lodging industry is the same.
The “how” of the industry may have changed, like how an innkeeper markets their inn and how a guest finds it, how money changes hands, how the innkeeper serves the guest with amenities and services, the kinds of amenities and services the guest wants, and how travel patterns may have shifted. But, the innkeeper still provides lodging and the guest still wants a clean, safe environment to call home.
One thing does seem different to me today, as compared to when I entered this industry, and that is the speed at which everything happens, contributing to innkeepers feeling constantly overwhelmed. Guests, staff, and vendors also experience that high-speed, chaotic life. But it’s the innkeeper I especially want to help: the one who sets the tone with their mindset of hospitality and service is who I feel I can assist the most.
Innkeepers are the caregivers of their guests, and in some ways of the world. Making sure innkeepers take care of themselves first is one important aspect of the coaching I offer. Making sure innkeepers learn to balance the myriad demands on their time so they can be gracious hosts is another important aspect of the Sage Blossom coaching program. Learning the technology and how it applies to innkeeping is important as well, and something I’m well versed in.
It’s my mission to serve innkeepers so they can be gracious hosts serving to their guests who will, because of the care they receive, spread goodwill throughout their spheres of influence. That’s the ripple effect that will make the world a better place.