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How much time do you spend in unnecessary meetings?

29 September 2022
A new study shows those pointless meetings make people unhappy at work and waste immense amounts of time and money. Of course, the impact of all the wasted time and money shows up on the bottom line as a cost, but the more significant impact on a hotel's bottom line is when the commercial team loses opportunities. An example is to tie up the salesperson in a meeting instead of meeting a potential customer.
The survey participants responded that they spend an average of 18 hours in meetings weekly and could have skipped almost six of those as long as the company kept them in the loop about their subject. Half of the respondents said they had too many unnecessary meetings on their calendar, and more than half said they felt obligated to accept invites even if they were not critical of a meeting's agenda.

The survey was not specifically targeting the hospitality industry, but surveying leaders and people in the commercial team would likely produce similar results. The survey finds that, on average, the wasted time in meetings costs $25,000 per employee every year. A hotel with a small commercial team, including the general manager, of four, would total $100,000 per year. How can hotels eliminate this waste of time and lost opportunities?

Access to information

Many meetings in hotels are about sharing information. The general manager wants an update on the progress in sales. The revenue manager needs to communicate the rate that the salesperson needs to close more corporate contracts. Marketing must understand for what periods they need to run a campaign. Operations must discuss the forecast with the revenue manager to schedule the cleaners. The list goes on and on. Information sharing is essential to manage a hotel smoothly. Lack of easy access to information creates unnecessary meetings and wastes valuable time that everyone can use for more productive work. Hotels could eliminate many unproductive meetings if everyone had easy access to the needed information.

Solid processes

Hotels without solid processes need more meetings to discuss how to do things and solve never-ending problems. A well-designed process that is easy to follow and produces the intended results minimizes wasting time. When there is a process in place, people know what to do and improve both the speed and quality of the work. Most of the time, the result is better service to the guest and higher scores in the guest reviews. Hotels eliminate wasting time in meetings and, at the same time, increase both guest and employee satisfaction. Well-designed hotel processes also apply to marketing, sales, revenue management, and the general manager. Here are a few procedures that would save time and money if designed well and implemented correctly.
  • Sales - from inquiry to won deal
  • Sales - from RFP to signed corporate agreement
  • Marketing - create, run, and evaluate campaigns
  • Revenue - forecasting rooms and room revenue
  • Revenue - forecasting all revenue sources
  • Revenue - updating rates and availability based on forecasts and pick-up
  • General manager - monthly reporting
  • General manager - budgeting

Performance tracking

Hotels can track performance through traditional KPIs, such as occupancy, ADR, RevPAR, RGI, GOP, and many others. The list of used KPIs in the hotel industry is long. Even if tracking is possible, it is only meaningful if there is a direction or a goal that the hotel wants to reach. A frustrating time-waster is not knowing where the management wants the hotel to be. Without clear goals, discussions in meetings become ad-hoc as soon as a KPI is going in the wrong direction. Critical, transparent success factors will align all employees toward the same goals. Everyone will know where the hotel is headed and take the initiative to speed up the progress: less wasted time and fewer meetings. The necessary meeting will become more productive and creative and focus on improving the business instead of solving endless problems.

Demand Calendar eliminates unnecessary meetings

All employees in a hotel with access to Demand Calendar will always have the latest information at their fingertips to manage their jobs faster and more accurately. The well-designed marketing, sales, revenue management, and general management processes are probably state-of-the-art in the industry and make the commercial work more productive. Demand Calendar will eliminate all unnecessary commercial meetings and save a hotel up to $25,000 per employee annually.