What does hospitality mean to you in your role? How do you show clients “outrageous” hospitality?
We decided to define the elusive question by asking the hospitality professionals who show it to clients day in and day out.
Defining What Hospitality Means
When figuring out what hospitality even means in the events industry, we looked to define it first.
- Merriam Webster’s Dictionary defines hospitality as, “generous and friendly treatment of visitors and guests or hospitable treatment.”
- Dictionary.com goes further to define it as, “the friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers.”
For those working in hospitality, this transcends only working in hotels or food and beverage. This extends to anyone providing pieces of an event that provides a friendly, welcoming environment that defines hospitality.
How to Show Hospitality in Events
To truly understand hospitality, we looked to real-world examples of how professionals show hospitality. We asked four professionals how they show outrageous hospitality to their clients and at their events. Here are the stories of outrageous hospitality they told us:
1. Finding quick solutions to unexpected problems — and with a smile:
2. Stepping in when others drop the ball:
3. Treating your guests (and teammates) as people — not just bodies in a room:
4. Accepting personal inconveniences & tricky logistics for the better of the event:
Here’s How to Create a Hospitable Environment at Events
Now, it’s time for you to put it into action. So what does it take to create a hospitable environment at events? Here’s what we’ve learned (and how you can add hospitality touches:
1. Emphasize the little things.
It’s the small things that clients remember when it comes to going the extra mile. Take the time to make all the details perfect.
2. Put yourself in your attendees’ shoes.
For event professionals, there’s no greater skill than empathy. Putting yourself in your guests’ shoes helps to anticipate what attendees need so you can deliver a fantastic experience.
3. Make it happen by any means necessary.
Clients look to us to make their event ideas (and dreams) come to life. As professionals, we need to do anything it takes, even if it’s inconvenient or time-consuming.
4. Be the event’s quarterback.
You may not know everything there is to know about rigging, chafing dishes, or event Wi-Fi. But you know which resources to call upon to solve problems about them.
5. Make the event inclusive to everyone
Create introvert-friendly events that benefit reserved attendees and their gregarious counterparts alike. Introverts prefer getting their bearings without having to ask for help, as much as possible. Facilitate easy event navigation with well-placed signage by check-in areas, communal spaces, and restrooms.
Up next, discover secrets to delivering a personalized experience for groups.
What does hospitality mean to you? Tell us your hospitality stories on Twitter!