How to make your business a place where talented people want to work


How to make your business a place where talented people want to work

Lisa Chambers

When you’ve got the right hospitality team, you’d be crazy to let them slip through your fingers, right? But it’s no secret that employee retention is a major challenge in the hospitality industry.

According to a report by the Institute of Hospitality, nine out of ten UK restaurateurs agree the struggle is real when it comes to recruiting new staff, with more than half expecting it to get even tougher after Brexit. As 95% of restaurants report staff turnover to be either increasing or remaining static, the battle for top talent has become even more competitive. It’s time for operators to think about how they can best make their business a place where talented people want to work.

It’s all too easy to lose yourself in hitting targets, managing your budget and all the minutiae that goes hand-in-hand with running your restaurant, hotel or pub. However, boosting your bottom line ultimately falls to the team you have around you. By dedicating time and effort into developing the right kind of company culture, you’re putting yourself in the best possible place to watch business soar. Our Operations and HR Director Lisa Chambers offers her top tips for making your organisation a place where talented people want to work…

Lead by example

A common complaint by employees in any industry is that management aren’t willing to do what they expect their employees to do.

“Avoid being a leader who barks orders and only voices criticism. Show that you can be hands-on too at times,” Lisa suggests. “Remember you set the mood for your team, so ensuring you start each and every day with a positive and motivational attitude will set the bar for staff.”

By showing your team you’re willing to get your hands dirty at times, you are demonstrating your level of understanding and enthusiasm for all areas of your business. This will make your employees much more likely to engage when you offer support and constructive advice.

Show they can grow

The management analytics gurus at Gallup found that a full 87% of millennial workers find professional development or career growth opportunities to be very important to them in a job. In fact, the company’s research revealed that ‘opportunities to learn and grow’ is one of the top three factors in retaining millennials - something the hospitality industry should pay close attention to.

“The premise in hospitality should be that you can start with little skill and reach the top,” states Lisa. “So ensuring that you proactively take steps to understand what each team member aspires to be or do within your business is essential if you want to keep good staff engaged.”

Staging regular one-to-one meetings and taking pains to develop training opportunities that support your employees to get to where they want to be - whether it’s moving to a new area of the business or a position with greater responsibility - will help to create a culture where people believe they can reach their professional goals.

Think like a team

Right from the induction stage of an employee’s career, you need to create an inclusive atmosphere - it’s the only way to get your team thinking and operating like a well-oiled machine.

“Personalised inductions, where each team member is introduced to the different people they will be working with, including management, is important to get new starters off on the right foot,” states Lisa. “But your efforts shouldn’t stop there. As a leader, you need to take responsibility for building team spirit and provide opportunities for your team to bond and develop the sort of camaraderie that an excellent work culture is built on.

“From regular motivational team meetings and open praise, to taking a genuine interest in each individual’s lives and the things that make them tick, you can have a huge impact on the ambience of your organisation - you just need to remember that a great company culture takes constant work to remain that way.”

Get social

While retaining good staff is the key to success in hospitality, attracting them in the first place can be just as much of a challenge. That’s where social media is your friend. Promoting your workplace as one in which people want to work is essentially a marketing exercise, so it’s crucial to define your target employee so that you can post and share the sort of content that will catch their eye, in a tone which they relate to.

“Publicise any perks or staff socials you may have organised,” suggests Lisa. “Reveal some of the personalities and human stories behind the faces of your business. By using social media to engage regularly with followers, not only can you attract more guests but you may just reel in your next star employee.”

How to make your business a place where talented people want to work
Back to Blog