One of the things that stood out so clearly in my mind during my time as Director of asset management was that the level of stress went into a steep decline at many of the properties that I was involved in.
As I got closer to the owners and also to the General Manager and his team, I found that I was able to bring the two closer through patient explanation to both sides of what they experience in daily life at their respective operations.
On the one hand, and most importantly, I brought the owners’ vision to life in the way I handled meetings on the ground at the hotel with the executive team. This is of extreme importance in being able to get the whole team channeling their energy and talents in the direction that satisfies the owner and his targets.
Yet on the other hand, I was also achieving another very important goal of getting the owner to understand and relate to the stress and burden that his team carry every day in pushing the property forward. Many owners, especially those not connected to hotel operations, need to attain an understanding of what their property goes through daily to satisfy their customers and, importantly, achieve the financial goals set mutually in the yearly budget.
It is a difficult task at times, and as the ‘go between’ you get to be between a rock and a hard place, but boy was it worth it. The rush and sense of satisfaction is palpable when you succeed and when you see the property and team get on with the job knowing that the owner is fully committed to them. It is as if you freed them to run ahead with their jobs.
When both the owner and the General Manager and his team see you as an ally, friend and support partner rather than a ‘critic’ (which is actually easier to do), it brings everyone on side and it is then that asset management comes into its own. Suggestions and recommendations are accepted at face value, discussed intelligently and many times adopted.
Simple things like rescheduling renovations to also suit the operations, brainstorming F&B committees, reduction in store inventory, physical inspections and more are easier to carry out, and the financial rewards are huge. Careful scrutiny of the marketing and sales results by segmentation and sub segmentation can lead to more focused efforts and increased ADR’s.
All this is so much easier once everyone is pulling in the same and right direction, and the ensuing results will prove the point.
I believe that my success as Director of Asset Management is due in very large part by my ability to bridge the ‘understanding’ gap between the owner and operations team, something that allowed me to bring up logical recommendations and suggestions that in some cases dramatically improved the bottom line.
Asset management is NOT us versus them, but rather, as the Clinton campaign states..’Stronger together’.
It is exactly what I strive to do at STAY Ahead Hospitality, for it has paid off handsomely in the past, and is the only way forward in my humble opinion.