Crisis Management for Your Hotel: How to Get It Right
When you think of Crisis Management, the first thing that comes to mind may be ‘short term’ or ‘company-specific’; whilst these are indeed types of crisis, they aren’t the only ones.
What Hotels Need in a Crisis Management Strategy
A hotel crisis management plan can take many forms and encompasses a variety of departments, ideas and individuals. It may represent what a hotel’s staff/management do during the crisis, how they prepare for the future and what they do to protect themselves as a business throughout. Or it could be each hotel’s digital marketing campaign and strategy.
A hotel crisis management team should be assembled, comprised of individuals across different departments who all have different allocated tasks in the wake of a crisis.
The Difference Between Short and Long-term Crisis
Like any other business, the hotel industry can face short-term and long-term crises. Understanding these two crises’ differences is crucial for effective crisis management and minimising the impact on the hotel’s reputation and success.
A short-term crisis in the hotel industry can be something like a sudden negative online review or a minor service disruption. While these crises may not have long-lasting consequences, they should never be taken lightly. Hotels should have a crisis management plan to handle such situations promptly and efficiently. By monitoring and responding to the crisis effectively, a hotel can resolve the issue quickly and prevent it from escalating into a long-term problem.
On the other hand, a long-term crisis in the hotel industry can have a significant and lasting impact on the business. This type of crisis may include events like a major natural disaster, a prolonged economic recession, or a widespread health crisis like a pandemic. Long-term crises require careful planning and strategic decision-making to mitigate their effects. Hotels should anticipate these crises as much as possible and have comprehensive crisis management training and strategies to minimise the damage and ensure business continuity.
Hotels should be prepared for both types of crises by having a robust crisis management plan covering a range of scenarios and staying proactive in monitoring and addressing potential issues. By effectively managing crises, hotels can protect their brand reputation, regain customer trust, and ensure long-term success.
When Does a Short-Term Crisis Need to be Reassessed?
A thorough and comprehensive crisis management plan should ideally include any scenarios that could realistically happen before they do. This isn’t to suggest that every business should constantly prepare for a worst-case scenario, but no company is to situations beyond their control. A short-term crisis will eventually strike at some point, therefore those that seem the most likely should be examined periodically and plans routinely updated as required
Some short-term crisis moments are unique, and preparation for them would have been impossible. In this case, a business should follow whichever strategies are most appropriate for resolving it. Planning is an essential aspect of crisis management, but there are issues that can’t be predicted, but even these can be prepared for to some extent. Although even spontaneous events that could not be predicted can be monitored and assessed, allowing the company to respond accordingly. Then once the issue has been contained, measures can be reviewed and assessed, then the overall strategy can be updated to include such events should they happen again.
When Do you put your Long-Term plans into action?
Every business owner should treat a possible long-term crisis with the utmost importance. It depends on the nature of the crisis, but if early warning signs appear, a business needs to implement its crisis management plan as soon as possible. Then it becomes essential to monitor and assess the situation as time goes on. The sooner plans are in place, the less damage will be inflicted, and the company will have the best chance to weather that storm.