The budget is the property guide to revenue, cost, and hotel profitability requirements. The aim is to forecast revenue and cost taking into consideration such factors as seasonality, rate, and mix. The setting of labor standards provides a framework to identify the hours required to service demand. All too often, labor standards fall into the trap of process redundancy and lack of scientific rigor leading to inflated costs and/or service breakdowns.
Costly alignment issues tend to reveal themselves at the point of execution, but the root causes can often be traced back to poor planning.
Having a plan is great, but a plan is never perfect. Sticking to a pre-determined plan even when your assumptions prove to be wrong, or unforeseen external factors enter the picture, can result in operational challenges and unsatisfied internal and external customers. Planning and forecasting is not a discrete task that is ever really complete, but an ongoing process that requires constant feedback and intelligence. For restaurant managers, poor forecasting and planning can cause over or under staffing, which can in turn lead to service breakdowns, unsatisfied guests, disengaged employees and inconsistent profitability.
A myriad of research studies and our own observation has demonstrated that culture is critical to corporate performance. Understanding the importance of culture to performance is certainly not a recent area of interest for leaders, as Peter Drucker observed years ago, “culture eats strategy for breakfast”. His point was not that strategy is irrelevant, but that culture can kill a great idea or strategy at the point of execution. We have found that the root cause of breakdowns in execution can be traced to a lack of organizational alignment, and that addressing alignment can be the starting point for turning the culture.
Front Office Staffing Challenges
"Boiling the ocean" is one of those phrases that can be quite accurate but is still slightly irritating to use or hear. It refers to analyzing something to death or tackling a problem with an impossible scope. And it's an easy trap to fall into when you are looking for opportunities. The usual reason for doing what inevitably ends up as a waste of time is the lack of a hypothesis. If you go searching for opportunity without some idea of what you are trying to determine, you may well have someone throw this phrase your way.
Over the years we've done a number of studies to try to help our clients find out what their customers think of them. These types of studies are often packaged under the term "voice of the customer." The idea is to survey customers to identify their key buying attributes and their priorities, and see how the company stacks up against competitors and alternatives. They are also quite predictable in many industries. Managers are also surveyed; they often score themselves highly. And so do customers. Companies often fare quite well with existing customers, and even with non-customers, on many important attributes. The problem is that competitors fare well too.
“All of us are smarter than any of us” – Seth Godin
April 15, 2015 - Boca Raton, Florida -- Many executives struggle to move their organization to a higher level of performance in a reasonable period of time. Carpedia International believes that they can help organizations achieve measurable and sustainable growth.
When we look for opportunity, we categorize time into green and red components. Green time is the current productive part of a process, while red time is the non-productive waste. Green time typically takes up 50-60% of a process, which means red time usually takes up between 40-50%. It surprises most managers to learn how much time falls into this red component. This is in part because people often equate productive time with effort, but the two aren't necessarily related. Non-productive time can take as much or more effort than productive time. It's also a little misleading because this somehow implies that a process could or should be 100% green. But some red (or non-productive) time, is actually required to allow some flexibility of operations. Other factors can also have an impact, such as machine versus people-driven processes or union verses non-union environments. Even so-called world-class processes generally have 10 to 15% red time due to real-life variability.
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