hospitality

Service with a Smile

Service with a Smile 150 150 Pedrotti's Ranch

It’s a simple thing in customer service, but it is effective. It’s a smile.

Something so easily delivered and yet so meaningful can really go a long way when it comes to servicing your clients and customers. We encourage smile usage as many times a day as possible. It’s one of the things in business with which you really can’t go wrong. When you are speaking with clients, put on your smile – whether it’s on the phone or in person – you’d be surprised, but people can tell when you’re smiling, even over the phone!

A smile is contagious, and it is also a necessity. It’s a business enhancer. It is an emotional boost. It’s something you can give that the competition doesn’t always remember to give. Show those pearly whites. Regardless if you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed, that smile will make you and your customer feel better. Use your business sense, and ALWAYS provide service with a smile.

Deciphering the Dress Code

Deciphering the Dress Code 150 150 Pedrotti's Ranch

Today’s topic is something new to the blog – event attire. I took it upon myself this week to learn about and get feedback from a number of ladies for this week’s blog. I am thankful for the assistance on fashion and its jargon from my co-workers around the office! Don’t worry, there are tips for the guys, too. Here we go…

Your company’s party is this Friday and the dress is business casual, your daughter’s sweet sixteen is in a month and the theme is ‘Hawaii 5-0’ and your cousin’s wedding is this weekend and the invitation says black tie optional. How does one know what is appropriate for each event? With these few simple definitions and examples, you’ll always be dressed to impress.

Business Casual

-If you work in a not-so-conservative office, voila! What you’re wearing is the perfect example of business casual. Comfortable slacks in linen or khaki, mixed with a dressy top or button down is a classic look that works for both men and women. For women, if you are meeting co-workers outside of the work place for an office party and the dress is ‘business casual’ look for slacks or a dressy pencil skirt in darker shades with a fancier top with a sheen and bright color. Heels are optional and with all the great styles in flats and boots, you can mix it up without feeling the pain at the end of the night.

-Guys can take care of business casual with jeans, a button up and a blazer – or the popular button up and khakis look. And you can get away with a polo shirt sometimes, too!

Black Tie or Formal

-A ‘black tie’ event calls for a more formal type of dress. Men are to wear tuxedos or suits and women are to wear up-scale cocktail dresses, evening dresses or dressy separates. Appropriate footwear includes dress shoes and heels.

-If an event just calls for ‘formal’ attire, a tie isn’t always required, but if you’re a man and you are wearing a tie, go ahead and add the jacket, your date will appreciate it.

-‘Black tie optional’ gives you the option of wearing a tuxedo or formal dress, but it alludes to the formality of the event, meaning a dark suit and tie would be your other option. Women wear cocktail, long dresses or dressy evening separates.

White Tie or Ultra-Formal

-A ‘white tie’ event is the most formal an event can get. Men need to be in full tuxedos and women should be in long gowns or very dressy separates.

Semi-Formalor After Five

-Tuxes are not required, nor are long dresses. An evening wedding (after 6 PM) would still dictate dark suits for him, and a cocktail dress for her. Daytime semi-formal events mean a suit for him and an appropriate short dress or dressy suit for her.

 Cocktail Attire

 -For women, this means short, elegant dresses and dressy heels. Depending on the event, the dress can either be a little more showy or subdued. If the dress is in solid or dark shades, go for a shoe in a great complimentary color to give your outfit a focal point. For men, stick to dark suits and (clean) dress shoes.

 Festive Attire

-‘Festive attire’ is usually seen around the holidays. For her, it means to choose looks with a bit of sparkle, lively pattern or animal print. Dark jeans and a sparkly sweater would be a perfect outfit for an office holiday party. For men, try a knit pull-over in reds, greens or blues with khaki or denim slacks and you are good to go celebrate the season with your co-workers.

Theme

-For adults, theme parties can really go either way. Do you have friends that go all out for Halloween? Then yes, feel free to dress up to your heart’s desire. If you don’t feel comfortable wearing a classic Halloween costume then just go for little touches that allude to your costume. Women, pull out that classic black dress that you’ve only been able to wear to a few occasions, buy some cat ears and a tail and you are good to go. Guys can get away with just about any mask or wig. If your budget it a little low, you can also go to a party store and buy some clip-on vampire fangs and with a little blood and a shirt you don’t mind getting dirty, you’ve got an original costume that it sure to turn some heads.

-If you are a parent hosting or chaperoning a themed event for your child or teen, I wouldn’t recommend dressing up too much. If it’s a Hawaiian-themed event, no one really wants to see their mom (or dad!) in a coconut bikini. Just stick with staple pieces leis around the neck or a Hawaiian flower in your hair. When it comes to your dress to your child or teen, less is more.

-There are many other theme options, but these are just a couple to consider.

Well, there it is. Anthony’s thoughts on fashion – never thought you’d read that, did you? But I hope you enjoyed.

The 2011 Blueprint: Organizing Your Objectives

The 2011 Blueprint: Organizing Your Objectives 150 150 Pedrotti's Ranch

The beginning of the year brings forth a spirit of plans, goals and strategies. Organization is the first key to aligning yourself and your work with the year ahead. Organizing can be simply defined as managing processes that provide structure and composition for following your plans and meeting your goals.

Organization makes the way smoother for seamless operation and success of a business. The things to remember, whether you are organizing your personal or professional life are objectives, tactics and execution. Make a blueprint, develop creative ideas, and go for it!

Objectives

In order to determine your objectives, you must set goals for yourself. Ensure that they are measurable and feasible. Set your sights high, but don’t set them so high that there is no way you will meet them. It is useful to classify overall objectives into immediate, short-term and long-term objectives. Figure out what you need to do first, then what you need to do in the next three months, and finally, what you must accomplish within the year to achieve your goals.

Organize this data – chronologically and by necessity. Write it down, type it up – make it very clear to your team, staff or family that these are the objectives that need to be met. Review your objectives on a regular basis to make sure everyone stays on target. Read them aloud and make sure each person working to achieve those goals with you has them nearby at all times. Keeping objectives in mind allows you to always make sure your eye is on the prize.

Tactics

Devise tactics that will work as the plan to meet your objectives. Be willing to review them on a consistent basis. If they aren’t working, DON’T BE AFRAID to change them. Change, especially with tactics, is a good thing, particularly if it puts you on a better track to success.

Assign these tactics to the individuals that best inhibit the potential and talents to use them. And coach your team on the tactical process. Don’t just throw the tactics out there – brainstorm, discuss and understand the processes before saying, “Go!”

Execution

Be sure you have the plans and back-up plans set in place before you execute. Two of the most important things in regard to execution are preparation and motivation. Think of it regard to sports – your team must have the game plan and be prepared for the opponent. They must also be motivated to play hard and do what it takes to win. Employ your staff to work as a team, use each other’s talents and play with an inspiration that will lead them to be the best.

As William Foster once said, “Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives.”

Here’s to organizing 2011 and reaching the goals that are laid out ahead of you!

Who’s Your Hero?

Who’s Your Hero? 150 150 Pedrotti's Ranch

Have you ever considered how much impact your heroes can have on your life? It seems we think of heroes as all of the big names that are paraded across our TVs, the ones who make the big bucks and the ones who are household names. While we can find heroes in those places, it’s important to remember to recognize the heroes around you.

Two of my biggest heroes are my parents. They have taught me so much and have allowed me to experience a life of great versatility. Each day, I try to understand and learn from the business decisions my parents make so that I can continue to enhance my own professionalism. A hero doesn’t have to be someone who scores the winning run, it can be someone who encourages you in the office, teaches you a lesson in customer service and demonstrates great character in the face of adversity. These are the greatest heroes to learn from and appreciate.

Don’t get lost in daydreaming about what it would take to get fame and fortune. Instead, focus on the superstars in your own life. Let them teach you, guide you and help you grow so that one day, you can return that favor to the next in line.

Are you making a change?

Are you making a change? 150 150 Pedrotti's Ranch

We recently polled some folks on our Facebook page about their new year’s resolutions. What did we hear back? The typical answers – eat better, lose weight, save money. These are all great resolutions and great goals, no doubt.

But we all know that the gym is packed to the brim for the month of January, and seemingly, the crowds fizzle to the norm by mid- to late February. While these are resolutions are personal resolutions, they can be applied to the thought of professional resolutions, as well.

Here’s a thought – rather than make resolutions that are seemingly made to be broken – why not make lifestyle changes?

Many years ago, Mahatma Gandhi told us what we need to do, “Be the change we wish to see in the world.”

Though Gandhi’s quote has been quoted to the point of becoming a cliché, it is something that should be implemented in our lives on a daily basis, both personal and professional. From a hospitality purview, we must adapt and make changes daily, literally.

So, what is the change we want to see?

Well, in the realm of hospitality, we want to change each event to be tailored to each of our clients’ interests and desires. We want to change any problem we see during an event and turn it into a solution. We strive to change the negative and turn it into a positive.

We want to change any poor experiences that someone may have had with a past vendor or venue and provide the most optimal service and experience. It is our goal to change the wrong to right, the bad to good, and the unsightly to beautiful – because our ultimate endeavor is to please every client, customer and guest that graces our presence.

Change is constant. It’s not a resolution you make once a year, especially in business. It is making adjustments, learning from failures, correcting mistakes, creating progressive paths and fine-tuning the smallest details to ensure that the change is leading to greater things and constant success.

So instead of a resolution this year, how about a change?

 (And a sidenote to our Facebook respondents, this in no way takes away from your noted resolutions. We are absolutely cheering for your success and hope that you can make the changes you need to succeed with your goals in mind! Go get ‘em!)

Holiday Hospitality

Holiday Hospitality 150 150 Pedrotti's Ranch

I think we all define the spirit of Christmas and the holidays differently. It’s something that is both internal and external. And I hope that it is with each of you this holiday season.

In the world of hospitality, we showcase holidays through the hosting of parties, creation of delicious holiday meals, playing of Christmas music, decorating from floor to ceiling and many other things. We have been blessed to share this month with a variety of different companies, organizations, groups and individuals. Each of them celebrates the holidays in a unique way. One of the things that is most important for us to do for each group that comes to share their holiday with us is to provide a great ambiance and a true spirit of cheer and gladness.

This spirit really shines through and makes the entire experience more invigorating and joyful. Whether you are providing a service, hosting a party, welcoming someone into your business or just sharing in togetherness and fellowship, be happy for the times you have with others and the unique encounters you experience during the holiday season.

Happy Holidays to each of you, and may the spirit of hospitality resonate through the holidays and the upcoming new year!

The Disney Key to Hospitality

The Disney Key to Hospitality 150 150 Pedrotti's Ranch

Customer service in the hospitality business is a key element for any successful business. Walt Disney has discovered one of the best formulas to a successful customer relations atmosphere. The Disney way has been a benchmark for customer service for more than twenty years. The Disney corporation maintains four keys to its customer service methodology that helped it to become the customer service leader it is today.

  1. Legendary attention to detail
  2. Exceed  expectations
  3. Theme, theme, theme
  4. Be guest-centered

Disney encourages a solid, well thought out recovery response to any and all customer complaints. When things go wrong, this allows the employee to transform an unhappy customer from a one-time user to a loyal customer. Problems are viewed as a chance to create an opportunities. Many employees view a problem as a hassle or a negative event and do not realize that is a unique opportunity to improve the image of the company.

One of the biggest principles that Disney practices is employee relations. They encourage employees to demonstrate spectacular relations with their guests and also their fellow co-workers. Treating each other the same way that the employees would treat a guest is a beneficial way to boost morale within the internal workings of a business.

Disney’s formula is:

A quality guest experience + a quality cast experience + quality business practices = THE FUTURE

Practicing sensational customer service, such as courtesy and etiquette, can and will improve your company and its image. Have a helpful attitude and accommodate each guest who enters your doors, and you will find success.

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