Yan Gouriou is no stranger from hospitality; he is familiar with the industry especially and in particular the luxury sector. His career has had him work in positions that span most hotel departments in some of the top hotels and resorts in Asia, Europe, the South Pacific, the Middle East and the Caribbean, including stints as Resident Manager of Cambridge Beaches Resort and Spa in Bermuda, as Food & Beverage Manager of Bangkok-based Lebua Hotel’s Dome complex, and a group GM of AHMS
With this kind of experience, Yan decided to launch his own hospitality consultancy ‘Unicorn Hospitality’.
*“The unicorn is mythical but Unicorn Hospitality is real, and we are here to give the old school a poke in the eye. We are all about offering intelligent, innovative yet field-tested ways to do business in Thailand and beyond.” *Yan explained.
Although Yan’s own background in marketing has been limited, from his experience running hotels for fifteen years makes him realise that Sales and Marketing is the key to success of any property.
“You need direct business. You can’t rely on just OTA. The formula should be 40% direct, 20% OTA, and 40% wholesale. To achieve that you need to provide good content via your website, distribute content to the community and run a good social media campaign. These will all help you with your SEO and attract people to your website directly. SEO is not something you learn easily. It’s a full time job and you need a specialist for it” Yan added.
Apart from technology, one other issue that Yan seems to frequently encounter is that hospitality here in Thailand doesn’t tend to be perceived as a career, but rather a backup plan by many. With this notion comes unmotivated staff. “Your job is to motivate your staff, motivate them to work better. My job is to open the mid of people. You need to put the right man in the right job, find people who are able to motivate others – people with leadership skills. …It’s time to refocus on human resources that create great hospitality experiences” added Yan.
This is why Unicorn also offers a recruitment and headhunting service. Finding the right man for the job in this city is not easy. Now Unicorn is a great new solution for managers that take their hospitality recruiting seriously.