Shame on Us in Hospitality - A Three Part Series by John Hendrie - Part 1 - The Jobs Dialogue

We in Hospitality are at a very interesting juncture. Everything has changed - our market, our business model, our guests, employees - really soup to nuts. Let’s take a look at the big picture, where Hospitality currently operates and a new way of thinking about our business.

Hospitality Performance The Jobs Dialogue

Abraham Maslow had it right with his Hierarchy of Needs. As we build our lives and careers, certain levels of life’s needs must be met before we can successfully move to the next step. Simple concept, even when placed as a template upon the National dialogue. Jobs, jobs, jobs make it happen!

President Obama should bring Steve Jobs back. He is an entrepreneur, a visionary and has the right name. Plus, he introduced products which helped to define an age, driving innovation, growth and empowerment. I doubt we are going to find the same inspiration in Washington. We usually create a committee with the finest of intentions, give them a few years, hear the results and then dismiss the whole package. Have them design a horse, and you end up with a camel. We do not have the time this round.

Hopefully, the President will be bold with his Jobs Plan. However, the climate in Washington is deadly, suffocating. Whether an idea makes sense or not, antagonists will bellow “no”. So, worthy projects, thinking and genuine ideas fall aside, battered by the bicker. Until we right our economic ship, the greatest nation in the world will continue to flounder.

Bold ideas are needed to put Americans back to work on a scale not seen for generations. Franklin Delano Roosevelt took the bull by the horn with the New Deal. Build dams, work the infrastructure, even encourage artists to paint murals in our great and small structures – employ the Nation in gainful effort. Wouldn’t it be great? But, Congress controls the purse strings and has the legislative clout. We have seen where compromise and current “adult“ behavior has moved the country – absolutely nowhere. I am not, however, a pessimist, for I know the population will throw the rascals out in the next election turn. But what a waste of time and momentum possibilities. We may think we have all the time there is, but at what cost to the Nation.

No doubt, some effort will be made with the big projects, for our bridges, transportation, roads and cities are a mess. But, follow the “trickle-down”. The initial assignments will go to our Union brethren, highly paid and benefitted, and sub-contracted from there. Suppliers enter the fray. When does Main Street begin to benefit? The uptown street, Wall, is doing just fine, thank you, coursing right along – not making anything but money. Who in their right mind wants to grow up to be president? I plan to just manage my portfolio.

What would happen if we just turned the usual economic model on its’ head, and focused heavily on the broad, expansive foundation, of which Hospitality has a major place. Ah, the Service Sector! Here are not the executives, the hedge funders, the honchos and CEO’s. These are the folks who check you in, clean your rooms, serve you dinner, cut your golf greens, lead your fishing parties, ring up your latest pair of jeans and bring you another pina colada. Let’s not forget the power of Tourism in our States. You have a connection with them, for they are us. Or, maybe a take-off on Al Capp’s Pogo, “I’ve seen the enemy, and it is us!”

We are a service economy, and all this talk and hope about bringing extensive manufacturing back to our shores is just silly. We allowed the exodus to occur, and in this global village there is not a restart button (only those made in Malaysia). So, why not focus on this vast service swath, rather than dream that Detroit will return to former glory. I mean really – the old Bethlehem Steel campus is now a lively casino. Follow the thread.

We would love to hear your opinions. Please leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

Part Two of the series is available here.

Part Three of the series is available here.

The Author believes that Remarkable Hospitality is the portal to the extraordinary Visitor and Guest Experience. Seek solutions at: www.hospitalityperformance.com

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