Housekeeping + The Guest Experience

By Mike Nixon, President, Innisfree Hotels

I don’t know that you can teach this, but there are certain housekeepers in the world that really have a special touch.

The first time I experienced this was while traveling with my two small sons – staying in a hotel in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, after a long day playing in the mountains.

The room was clean, and the boys’ teddy bears were tucked into the bed.

It was an extra touch that made us smile.

You see, housekeeping touches guests when they’re not around.

The Front Desk greets them at the door. Servers engage with guests during meal periods. Pool attendants connect with them while they’re relaxing.

But housekeepers are the unsung heroes.

It’s the little touches, like tucking in a teddy bear. Lining up the shoes. Throwing away used cups.

Maintenance is the same way. Say Matt goes to unclog a toilet and leaves a note that reads, “I am your maintenance man, here’s my cell, call me if you need me.”

Connecting with guests on that personal level truly makes a difference.

Being vulnerable to our guests from a human perspective is what it takes to do that.

It’s really an altruistic outlook on life. Our Founder and CEO Julian MacQueen often says we operate from a theory of abundance rather than scarcity. If Matt is worried that his cell phone bill is going to go up because he gives his number to guests, then he won’t do it. But if he realizes and he doesn’t care, that’s the magic dust we wish we could sprinkle on all our team members.

They’re the ones who are touching guests every day.

Every day, they have an opportunity to make a difference in the guest experience.

– As told to Ashley Kahn Salley
Lead Storyteller, Innisfree Hotels