The essential question for 2018
Now that we’re in the shoulder season, and most of us are busy trying to create our budgets for 2018, there is one essential question we’re all facing.
It’s a simple question, but it’s a hard one to answer…
How can I guarantee I’ll be more successful in 2018 than I was in 2017?
It’s tough, because 2017 was such a great year… and because there are so many market forces in play…
But the options are pretty straight forward.
During your budget decision making process, you can either:
1. Keep doing what you’ve been doing and hope for similar results. Maybe this is ‘the endless summer’. Or,
2. Step back for a moment and look at where things have been, historically, so you can figure out where they’re going – and position yourself for success.
I think the choice is pretty clear. That’s why I put this article together to share a section from my new book, Hospitality Marketing Synergy.
To start, we need to remember that the hospitality industry is kind of like the stock market. In that, there are moments of fear, when people tend to ‘hide in their shells’. And moments of greed, when people feel free to make big, bold moves.
It’s just human nature. And this is the key in understanding where things are going in 2018 and beyond.
So let’s map out how most people’s comfort zone (CZ) reacts during good times and bad:
Now let’s think back to the double-dip recession of 2008, for an example of what happens during times of stress and uncertainty.
During this time, (#3 on our chart) we see that when things get tough, budgets get cut, sales teams have less success, and hotels tend to avoid hiring replacements when team members quit. They’re not sure if they can handle the HR expense, after all, so they look for a less risky way to get things done. Their comfort zone (CZ) tells them to change their mentality from that of a ‘hunter’ to that of a ‘gatherer’.
Ironically, this leads to stage #4, where hotels become even more reliant on the OTAs to do most of the ‘heavy lifting’.