Hospitality Financial Leadership

Hospitality Financial Leadership - Systems and It’s Not What You Think - By David Lund


Every system is perfect for the results it creates.

The flip side of this is: Don’t change or make the people wrong - it is the system that’s wrong and the system needs to be changed. Then we will get another result. Keep working the system five percent at a time. Always be re-programming your system, i.e., what version of Windows are we on?

We tend to look at the chaos at work and in our own lives and we want to blame someone or something for it. It is the victim crying out that we have been unjustly punished and sentenced to suffer in the mess we are in. We need to rise above this and look at the system we use; see the system that exists and change it.

Unlock the system

What is the next thing in the system that needs to be re-programmed, what is the next thing that needs upgrading and strengthening? Do not play the fool’s game and expect a wholesale complete re-vamp of your system. Constant incremental improvements win the race. 

In the following situation I will use the example of the monthly commentary:

As it stands now, department managers are providing useless information on what happened last month and the upcoming month’s information is the same. It seems they write in a different language that I can’t understand. I am held hostage by their lack of commitment to this and they do not care. Do you hear the victim? Let him out of his cage.

Back to owning it:

The system I have is one where the department managers are made wrong on a regular basis because they are not living up to my expectations. Really, this is the case. What have I done to strengthen my monthly commentary system? What new software releases have I made to “our” commentary system? I own this mess and I am going to straighten it out and strengthen it. Make changes every month to make the commentary better.

Owning it:

My new system release this month entails a 1-1 with three of my biggest commentary customers (department managers) where we review the basics of a good commentary, one that does not regurgitate the numbers. A commentary that explains the variances based on a review of the assumptions for the month and what actually happened. Ah – a little light…. We agree to the format. The managers are actually relieved to have a blueprint to use. Why didn’t anyone tell me about this before? Next month I will do three more customers.

My system just got 5 percent better. What will my next system upgrade be? Maybe I will co-host a 20-minute workshop on creative writing. I know my public relations manager is a keener and this is something he would love to do. I just need to ask him to help me….

Systems are everything

Do not ever stop releasing new versions of your system. Every month we get to upgrade and strengthen our systems. The window opens every month.

What upgrade will we release this month?

What! A month goes by and no new software release. Come on! Be Microsoft, release an upgrade!

If you would like a copy of any of the following send me an email at

Hotel Financial Policy Manual – Inventory of “Sections”
Hotel Financial Coach “Services Sheet”
F&B Productivity Spreadsheet
Rooms Productivity Spreadsheet
Financial Leadership Recipe F TAR W
Enhanced Flow Thru Cheat Sheet 

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