By Richard Powell, General Manager
In the past 12 months, New Place Hotel has welcomed a record number of over 50,000 guests, hosted its highest number of weddings and managed its busiest Christmas period ever, which, despite industry reports that the UK’s regional hospitality market is in year on year profit decline, has brought a growth of 17% in revenue and 42% on the hotel’s bottom line during the past financial year.
Whilst there is great pride to be had in these financial results, especially in a challenging market, I was also delighted to see that guest satisfaction and review scores had risen to an all-time high of over 90%, proving the success of what I am most proud –the development of our fantastic team of staff.
Since New Place Hotel’s new ownership in 2017, our vision has been to establish it as one of the South’s leading hotels and this simply cannot be done without exceptional staff, delivering the highest standards of personal hospitality.
How? It’s very easy to talk about ‘team-spirit’ and ‘working well together’ but let me give you a couple of real examples that show how we work.
In the fast-paced world of hospitality, getting people together to discuss feedback and review our progress can be tricky, but we hold a ‘10 at 10’ meeting every day where representatives of all departments identify and discuss feedback, look ahead to the next few days of business and identify opportunities to surprise and delight our guests. This collaborative process thrives on effective communication and input from everyone sharing ideas and best practice.
Every member of the team has gone through full induction and undertakes regular training programmes to ensure they understand and play their part in our vision. In every area of the business, (gardeners, maintenance, kitchen, food & beverage, reception, sales, conference & events, night staff, leisure, admin, and management) we all have a common objective; to ensure our guests feel welcome, valued, enjoy a great stay and want to return.
Another example was when we all agreed we needed to ‘kick start’ our social media, particularly Facebook and Instagram, to attract attention and raise our profile online. We created a private ‘family group’ where staff could contribute pictures, ideas and events and we used this as a resource for which to create posts that have been really well received. Followers, engagement and interaction have all been increased, simply from the enthusiasm and voluntary contributions from people who enjoy and take pride in working here.
These are just a couple of examples of how our team have come together to support New Place Hotel – I could go on writing with many more but I believe that our end of year success has been down to the incredibly talented, dedicated and professional individuals who work here and I wanted to take this opportunity to publicly thank them.
One of the proudest moments for me as General Manager, was walking on stage of the Portsmouth Guildhall with colleagues to collect the trophy for ‘Team of the Year’ at the News Business Excellence Awards in February – acknowledgement and testimony to what I truly believe….
…. behind every great hotel, is an amazing team.
Now let’s roll up our sleeves and see how much better we can do in the next 12 months!