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Hospitality is nothing without staff. But you have to deserve them

By Friday, 20 May 2022 08:00

It’s no secret that in this part of the hospitality world the pandemic has driven large numbers of people away from tourism. Let’s face it, hospitality has not always attracted top talent, but the crisis has highlighted, not that it was needed, the fragility of an industry that has always been at the mercy of too many factors beyond its control.

So now, just as we are starting to see signs of a longed-for recovery, we find the raw material is missing. Those people who provide not only adequate service and skills, but all the warmth of true hospitality, which is at the very core of travel. The numbers are alarming. According to the Italian hoteliers’ association Federalberghi, in addition to the shortage of seasonal workers, the sector is having to cope with the diaspora of more than 20% of its permanent staff. Luckily there are those who are looking for alternatives, like Nardo Filippetti, president of the Lindbergh Group, who has just announced the Homie project for unstaffed (or practically unstaffed) hotels. They say they will be able to offer affordable luxury at an average €55 per night.

But perhaps the real solution lies elsewhere. In South Tyrol, which is one of Italy's most popular snow destinations, quite a few hotels remained closed this winter despite the upturn in demand. This was due to staff shortages, and some major Italian hotel groups have pointed out to me that the properties that did not reopen were known for their lack of staff empathy. I can’t help thinking this is the key, and it’s not rocket science: manage and optimize your staff better and you will find yourself with a more competent, more enthusiastic and, above all, more loyal team!


Massimiliano Sarti Massimiliano Sarti
Journalist

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