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2/3rd of a Cookie....

Updated: Aug 18, 2020

We cannot create 'Observers'​ by simply asking them to 'Observe'​.....

My 1st meeting that morning was at one of the London's more prestigious hotels (Ah! the good ol days when we met people) and I decided to schedule all the following meetings at the same venue.

My first meeting :

With a hotel owner - a client of my company, Aurora Hospitality. We ordered coffee and were promptly served our drinks and a plate with 2 cookies...nice touch.

My second meeting :

With another hotel owner, also a client of Aurora Hospitality; who was visiting from the USA. We ordered coffee and were promptly served our drinks and a plate with 2 the same member of staff ....showed consistency

My third meeting

With Jose Ucar, TEDx speaker and his brother German Ucar (absolutely fantastic Videographer)

The three of us started our discussion and ordered our coffees after a few minutes. Any guesses what happened?

We were promptly served, by the same member of staff as before...2 drinks and a plate of 2 cookies

We assumed the staff didn't have any tray big enough to bring all 2 in one go and that the 3rd drink was on its way. So we waited....and we waited....and we waited.

No one came back. Also Jose tried getting the attention of someone but no one in sight...After about 15 minutes he got up and went and found a member of staff who could serve us as required.

The 3rd cup arrived eventually, carried in hand, no tray....and was placed at the end of our table....and not served 'to the guest'....looking a bit insipid and rushed as compared to the other 2 (which by this time had gone cold) but this time no cookies! My colleagues, being very kind and patient people didn't say a thing.

But as a hotel industry professional for over 20 years, this is something I picked up on immediately...

All my appreciation for the consistency in service vanished in seconds.

We all know delays happen in the best of places.

  1. But why was the service style changed? Why was there no tray? Why was it brought in hand and not given cookies?

  2. Did the staff think we would share 2/3...rather difficult to do that given how they are shaped.

  3. It became quite apparent that the staff member was operating on some sort of robotic mode without any observation of the guests.

  4. Also, the haphazardness with which we were served indicated that the staff panicked with the fear of a complaint being raised and getting a yelling from his boss, got stressed and rushed and compromised the quality of service.

This isn't about the Hotel and its standard but more about how the staff members respond and react to the smallest of situations...and start compromising the 'level'.

So what could they do differently ?

  1. Increase the observation power...and unlike what is believed - We cannot create observers by simply asking them to observe; but by giving them the Power and the Means to make such observations...which are procured through the education of the senses (Maria Montessori)

  2. Stop panicking ! All individuals react or respond based on the state of their emotions. And panic leads to reactions rather than responses.

Under our signature programme, Hotelier Excellence we offer all of these skills to Hotel teams.

Here's what some of them said


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