Housekeeping takes centre stage at Qatar summit
The "Empowering Your Housekeeping Team to Shine" workshop at the 2017 Hospitality Summit raised the visibility of hotel housekeepers
Housekeeping is a thankless, invisible function that can make or break a hotel, according to participants in a workshop entitled "Empowering Your Housekeeping Team to Shine" at the 2017 Qatar Hospitality Summit.
Moderator Prabat Shukla, executive housekeeper at Intercontinental Doha The City, said: “We don’t generate revenue, but housekeeping can make or break a hotel. We can transform a trashed room into one that leaves no evidence of the pervious occupant and is ready to sell.
“A revenue manager can only generate revenue when he is confident that his product can be sold in the market. And that is delivered by whom?”
Shukla insisted that housekeepers need to learn to tell their story or risk remaining as unsung heroes who never get the credit. He said that housekeepers have the potential to contribute to business success. “Room maids/attendants have a more intimate contact with guests than any other hotel employee – their habits, and ways of living, which no one else knows.”
He urged them have more curiosity about the business and why things are done in certain ways; to take more risks and make mistakes.
One executive housekeeper commented: “Because the housekeeping is done while the guest is not in the room, our invisibility doesn’t help us communicate the value of the work we do. It’s almost like we weren’t there.”
Suggestions for improving housekeepers’ visibility and respect included: room attendant business cards; a change of job title from ‘room attendant’ to ‘floor ambassador’; and for executive housekeepers to be more effective ‘cheerleaders’ for their teams.
Approximately 200 of Qatar’s hoteliers and hospitality providers convened at the Grand Hyatt Doha on April 11, 2017 for the seventh annual Hotelier Middle East Qatar Hospitality Summit, a day of industry presentations, panel discussions and workshops dealing with issues and developments in Qatar’s evolving tourism industry landscape. The event was sponsored by exhibitors: Pulsar Foodstuff, The Gourmet Olive Market, A. Ronai, KTC Hospitality Division, Matrix Asset Management Solution, Isukoshi, Grand Strength, Langel and Technogym, as well as workshop sponsor Tink Labs and lunch sponsor Qatar National Import and Export Company.