With all of the uncertainty and anxiety that coronavirus has introduced into the world, many hospitality companies are taking extraordinary action to help their people and their communities. You don’t have to look further than their published corporate values to understand why.
Here are just a few examples from some of the largest hospitality brands:
Hilton’s values are famously easy to remember, which is important when you have hundreds of thousands of employees that need to live by them. They are:
- H. HOSPITALITY. We’re passionate about delivering exceptional guest experiences.
- I. INTEGRITY. We do the right thing, all the time.
- L. LEADERSHIP. We’re leaders in our industry and in our communities.
- T. TEAMWORK. We’re team players in everything we do.
- O. OWNERSHIP. We’re the owners of our actions and decisions.
- N. NOW.
Every day during the pandemic, you can find examples of Hilton employees exhibiting all of these values in their response to the crisis. In fact, the company added a webpage showing all of the different ways that associates and the hotels are helping the communities that they serve, such as hosting first responders (hospitality), donating food and supplies to those in need (integrity, now) and coming together to install a water point outside a hotel in Cameroon so locals can wash their hands and help maintain high standards of hygiene (teamwork).
Marriott’s five core values are at the heart of the company’s culture. They include:
- Put People First.
- Pursue Excellence.
- Act with Integrity.
- Embrace Change.
- Serve our World.
These values serve as a guide for the company as they navigate the crisis. For example, the company changed its cancellation policy to allow guests to get refunds, even if they were booked under a more restrictive policy. (Put people first.) They also introduced high-tech disinfecting machines as part of Covid-19 response and quickly updated older policies. (Embrace change.) They launched the Community Caregiver Program, which offers medical workers and support staff special rates at select Marriott hotels as a way to stay close to the hospitals and government buildings where they are assisting with Covid-19 response efforts. (Serve our World).
For example, the Sheraton Dallas Hotel parking garage exterior featured a bright spot courtesy of Dallas-based artist Mari Pohlman, who painted a mural themed “Optimism Starts With You.”
With 17 brands under IHG, the company keeps its values simple to ensure they’re easy to remember:
- Do the right thing
- Show we care
- Aim higher
- Celebrate difference
- Work better together
It’s easy to imagine how these values helped guide associates during a typical workday pre-Covid-19. But today, during a global pandemic, these values take on even more importance. In the midst of the pandemic, IHG lit up its windows with heart-shaped lights and extended its program for communities and charitable giving, True Hospitality for Good. The company committed funding and support to be there for local communities where they are most vulnerable. In doing so, the company checked every box and showed how its values guide them during both good times and bad.
Why values are so important today:
In times of crisis, revisiting your hotel’s mission, values and brand will serve you well, as they can help guide your decision-making process when variables are uncertain. With the hustle and bustle around reopening and building occupancy, it may be easy to fall into reactionary tactics that will hurt your reputation and your hotel in the long-term. Instead, leverage your brand as your north star. Use it to ensure your strategies are thoughtful and effective, rather than taking the easy way out.
Learn more strategies for recovery and securing revenue as travel rebounds in our upcoming guide. Sign up to be notified when it’s released.