Thursday, October 12, 2023

Hospitality - the business of businesses


When you're working in hospitality, there's one sure thing: all your days will be different. The industry comprises various moving parts that make it an excellent teacher. 

Several fields come into play within the hospitality industry to create an experience. E.g. Real estate, function and event planning, food and beverage, reception and front office, accounts, cost controls, maintenance & engineering, laundry, housekeeping services, retail, transportation, activities, gardens and amenities, horticulture, training and development of human capital and the list can go on depending on the property/resources being managed. 

The hours can be long and gruelling. Often, hospitality workers can be the most challenging customers since they know what they have to put up with when the roles are reversed, and they are the service providers. 

So, what does hospitality mean to you? Smiling at the customer? As is so readily touted in so many programs - written and spoken? When seen within the public domain, do we pay attention to operations to ensure that the organization functions as one entity? 

A variety of roles are required within a well-run hospitality organization, and the level of competence is expected. No effort that goes into creating the customers' experience is accidental. You need to be functional in the areas within which you serve. 

In short, every element of activity must bring value to the experience of the guest in a manner that surpasses their expectations - creating value in their minds without the concern necessarily of money they have to/need to spend. 

Let's do better to enhance our services within the hospitality environment.

Saturday, August 5, 2023

Some thoughts on trading


Living in a small island state permits me to have some observations that go unnoticed in other jurisdictions. This leads me to questions which I have wondered go unanswered annually. In this instance, I turn to trade. 

  • How can other countries get their items to the end user more cheaply than those of us that would have shorter supply chains? 
  • How would our countries benefit economically should we send back the cargo vessels full of goods produced here rather than letting them go back empty after the importation is completed? 
  • How can we more affordably move people and goods across the Caribbean by boats if air travel cost are so prohibitive?
  • Why are we so quick to adopt the policies of international jurisdictions that don't seem to follow the dictates that they seek to impose on us for compliance?
  • Why are we not utilizing our lands effectively to contribute to our food security? Most base ingredients used across the globe are similar, and the difference is applied to arrive at various dishes. 
  • We need to return to agriculture to enable us to feed ourselves and use the money saved in other areas that address our ability to reduce debt, strengthen the health programs within our jurisdictions, and ensure that the foods we receive are more wholesome, bonafide foods rather than having fruit without seeds and other non organic forms. Let's eat for quality experiences not full stomachs. 
  • Our chefs should be featuring our locally grown foods rather than all the imported items including imported chefs. 
  • With the amount of food businesses, and the fact there is a high failure rate among such establishments, why are there not more food management courses offered to teach locals the business side of food? 
  • We need to put access to international markets in place via shipping route development for our exports to really take off. 

There are others but today we stop here. Have a great weekend, ponder what was highlighted earlier. and come up with solutions. We need them as a matter of urgency. 

Saturday, May 20, 2023

When tragedy strikes the death knell

If you've ever been involved with supporting a cause, you will be familiar with the zeal that goes into it when everything is new and the uncertainty is high. Everything seems to be a life-or-death decision on which everyone's decisions hang. There's an urgency, especially when the individual is young and vulnerable. 

Over time, as the years pass by, the individuals who are impacted live. Complacency sets in and can become entrenched until something tragic happens. In other words, we lose the edge. 

Yes, people are ready to support you as always. However, the reality is, people burn out. Particularly the leadership. 

If this reflects any organizations with which you are affiliated, then there's a need for a change. It is lives that are in jeopardy and therefore the situation is too tenuous to play around with the decision-making and support processes. 

What can get in the way? 

In short form: pride, ego, fear are some of the broad headings that come to mind. These and their derivatives serve to hinder an organization's progress and stop the realization of the objectives of the entity. 

Take action now! Put your house in order and so you wouldn't have to wait until tragedy strikes. 

Sunday, April 30, 2023

Why do I have a business and does it serve me and others?

 If you have stopped by because of the title then you too may be wondering, where is he going with this. There are many people who are getting into the businesses but they never ask the really defining questions that may bring clarity. 

If I had to be really direct then we can examine, did you seek God about what to do, or just consult yourself on what you believed you like doing? Many of us do the latter and then pray that God blesses our efforts to help us succeed. We get it backwards. 

Here are some questions you need to consider before you get into business. They may help you redefine your business if you're already in business. 

  1. Why should one get into business? [Gen 2:15]
  2. What should that business be about? [Gen 2:16]
  3. Is it in alignment with our core values? [Gen 2:17]
  4. How can it be made sustainable? [Gen 2:18]
These can be answered in your time through your own investigation. I have put some passages beside each question as points of reference which through your own investigation will reveal to you more information about the business you are seeking to invest in as well as if it would be blessed and sustainable. 

You are given the scope of your business and the possibility of success should you act based on the information that you have. Will you have challenges? Yes. However, you will have divine guidance since you first committed your plans to the Lord. [Prov 16:3 & Psalms 20:4] 

Do we really give creative thought as to what, who, why, where, when,  and how we really serve by being in business? It seems sometimes like we get into business without that clarity which then leads us into the avenues of fear, stress and panic when we don't have sufficient information. Shouldn't business be easier? I think so. 

Ensure that you take every step to be clear about your business. That clarity should cover every element of your business so that you make mistakes on paper rather than with paper. 

Get a business team together one thing is certain. You can't think of everything. You don't know everything. There are organizations that can provide you and your entity with technical assistance. These programs can provide consultations, training, webinars and seminars. 

The help will permit you to access funding, growth, and revamp operations.  Consider who really owns your business and perhaps that will help you with your approach to the business entrusted to you. 

Monday, April 24, 2023

A new direction - carefully being researched

It's a new day and there are new developments. There's quite a bit of "newness" going around. On this blog, we too will be making some changes. 

The research is going on and I encourage you to stay tuned. There is another way of doing business that ensures they thrive. 

I firmly believe that God blesses those who have the capacity to manage. This first became known to me through Dr. Myles Munroe's sermon from many years ago. It got me thinking. Then others offered supporting information from within the Bible - The Living Word. 

I won't say more at this stage but encourage you to stay tuned. It won't be long in coming. I don't have all the answers, I'm just letting God use me as an instrument of his grace. 

Looking forward to sharing how we can all function better in the marketplace with more wholesome businesses. 

We will learn of the challenges and sacrifices of being in business and situations that can come against you. Hopefully, we will prayerfully be able to share answers that offer relief. 

There is an urging by the Holy Spirit that this is necessary. I am required to be obedient to Abba God. May His will be done. 

Sunday, February 26, 2023

Who do SMEs really help?

Ever so often we need to take stock of what we do. We often hear of the benefits of SMEs being touted online, but I really need to beg an answer to this question. Who is really benefitting as a result of what has been dubbed entrepreneurship? 

At the micro level, it is a way of helping people develop gainful self-employment, which enables governments to boast about how many jobs were created. However, for those who work within the sector and are observant, it is hard to recognize that the technical assistance entities need to be more holistic in their approaches to SMEs. 

The result is that many entities open and operate as SMEs throughout their entire existence growing to a certain level and no further. The majority function as trading as/general partnerships and those who incorporate are unaware of their strategy for doing so. They also don't have an exit plan that would enable the business to survive beyond their lifetime. 

Too many entities are dependent on the most expensive way of raising capital which is through the banking system and few, if any, really look towards creating equity finance opportunities where investors can participate meaningfully. 

Still others are not up on the information required for good governance and in some cases where to turn to find it. Many entities cannot hire the talent they need on a full time basis and many are concerned that they cannot afford the fees of outsourcing. 

Trainnig should be on-going and many your entrepreneurs fine the pressure of down time being adequate for them to participate in such continuing education. Therefore they drop behind. It is for that reason that those of us who do train must keep updated with technology so as to better provide solutions. 

So does having a SME really help? The answer is really up to those who have benefitted and continue to benefit. 

We need to do better for our entrepreneurs as running a business has a lot of moving parts, and we don't learn them all in business school. 

Keep checking back for more posts or recap some of the older ones on this site. 

Have a great week ahead. 


Friday, February 24, 2023

Crisis mode

 I was recently chatting with a colleague and as we spoke some similarities in the issues we came across were common between our entities. We are finding that clients are staggering within the business environment. The pressures are quite great for many and many are finding the conditions to be overwhelming. 

Well...someone's got to handle it. We can't all run the opposite direction. 

  • Indecision
  • Lack of discipline
  • Poor budgeting 
  • Inadequate planning
  • Disorganizeed 
  • Insufficient preparation
  • Fear of failure 
  • Not enough knowledge 
  • Inexperience 
  • No team 
  • Weak systems 
  • Limited access to financial information, funding, and technical assistance 
  • Undesirable people skills
These are all reasons that businesses experience challenges and these listed are from within. They don't really include factors beyond the skills and abilities of the business that impact externally. 
Can we ever be prepared for the unforeseen? 

As we know, it is virtually unrealistic to expect one person to be on the ball with every aspect of the business. It is for this reason that business functions best when there's a team involved, but you must be selective. 

Who we have on the team is important to the success(es) that the business is likely to encounter. All of these areas can be delved into further should you decide to book a planning session should you need help in these areas. Should we not have the talent in-house, we can connect you with those in our network who have those competencies. Either way, there's always a solution. 

Check back often for updates and read/reread our articles based on your business needs. Have a phenomenal day! 

Hospitality - the business of businesses

  When you're working in hospitality, there's one sure thing: all your days will be different. The industry comprises various moving...