LG: Who is your consumer and corporate customer and how have they changed over the years? They are brought to life by the employees. Employee empowerment and recognition is the core of our culture and how we achieve outstanding service. We have a mission statement–it’s about four or five pages long. When we saw this change occurring, we created our Ritz Kids program, to provide activities for families while staying at our hotels.
Informality/approachable luxury is the standard today. We created our motto, “We are Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and Gentlemen” in 1986 and it took a great deal of thought and discussion. You may opt-out by. Micah Solomon: The easiest way I know to terrify an audience of business leaders is to describe to them how the Ritz-Carlton allows any employee in your organization to fix any guest problem, without asking for permission–even if it costs up to $2000 to do so. The attitude I strive to get across to my employees is this: “You are not servants, because unlike a servant, I want you to be engaged with the customer—you have a brain, you have a heart and I want you to use them.” This is why we say, and have always said, that we are ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen. In my early twenties I worked in a small lodge —located on Africa’s Ivory Coast. HH: My other favorite place in the world to visit is a small village in the south of France called Valaurie.
Drive Brand Performance and Customer Loyalty. Herve Humler, President and Chief Operating Officer, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company: This is what we’ve always called here at The Ritz-Carlton, for decades before it became a … We opened the Leadership Center in 1999 and have welcomed thousands of senior executives, managers and staff from leading companies far and wide.
Another area where we’ve become less formal is in authentic, unscripted conversation and interactions with the customer.
Simply put, we are always looking to use the latest technology in ways that will enhance the guest experience. We created our motto, “We are Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and Gentlemen” in 1986 and it took a great deal of thought and discussion.” LG: Share with us your vision and the Ritz-Carlton brand voice that reflects the authentic customer-centric culture you created and the way of life motto ‘Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and Gentlemen.’. Humler: Luxury travelers have long welcomed personalized services that make logistics that little bit more manageable, or make unfamiliar experiences more relatable. We listened to this and agreed. Humler: Superior, seamless service doesn’t take a rocket scientist to work out – and yet it is the force behind some of the most successful brands in the world. HH: To keep the brand relevant, we have continued to maintain a pulse on the customer. It is where my grandmother had a summer house that my wife and I have renovated in the French style. Clearly, the needs and expectations of luxury travelers grow as rapidly as the development of technology. Live: What The Presidential Election Results Mean For Your Money, EY & Citi On The Importance Of Resilience And Innovation, Impact 50: Investors Seeking Profit — And Pushing For Change, Your Customer Is The Star: An eBook From Forbes. Our guests also want to engage with us in the digital space and we have done that through our social media channels. Herve Humler is President & Chief Operations Officer at The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Co. LLC. Herve Humler, The Ritz-Carlton Traditional luxury was all about material goods, living a life of comfort, which was characterized by collecting material goods on the wall. Ritz-Carlton now operates 88 hotels worldwide that include such innovations as the “world’s highest hotel” in Hong Kong and the new, ultra-private, ultra-luxury Ritz-Carlton Reserve concept. Energizing a global workforce has to be a daily commitment, and is the reason that we conduct lineup three times per day, every day, all over the world. Our breadth of geographic distribution gives us a significant advantage over the competition in that we can really see the global trends in travel and luxury and better understand the key drivers of growth in these markets.
HH: I was born in the southern French city of Toulon, and raised on Africa’s Ivory Coast, where I earned a baccalaureate degree. It's important to our success that we commit ourselves every day, day in and day out. Certainly the time of the jacket and the tie is over, it's finished. The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, LLC provides hotel and resort services. It’s important that we provide them with this seamless service– all of the element of the luxury hotel experience must integrate and flow together, from the planning process when they make the reservation, to when they depart the hotel. Previously cities included San Francisco CA and Trenton ME. Today they travel to collect experiences. Can you talk with me about this?
In the early days when putting together this hotel company and growing it globally, we scripted almost everything. Suite 800 Is there anything else you want to share with them about your leadership style, organizational culture, or anything else that would be helpful to them in their own organizations?
This philosophy is based on trust, respect and integrity, and one which translates around the world no matter where we open a hotel. I believe in the power of recognition and empowerment leading to great employee engagement. Now, 36 years later, the company’s growth from 1 to 100 hotels shows that what we have done has resonated with customers; in fact, over 50% of our current guests are from the X and the Y generations. We created a Ritz-Carlton mobile app [more about the Ritz-Carlton's new mobile app in my article here] and are soon introducing Phase Two of the app which will have a whole wave of new features for seamless service that include use of a GPS function to deliver your drink to you anywhere in a resort.
Because the lodge was so casual, I would spend time with the guests, sharing stories and getting to know their families. Chevy Chase, MD 20815 © 2020 Forbes Media LLC.
The village has a small square with a fountain as is surrounded by beautiful fields of thyme, lavender and olive trees. If we do that well, the rest of our job is easy and we will by default sell rooms. And how is Ritz-Carlton changing with them? Today, companies come from all over the world to The Ritz-Carlton Leadership Center, our corporate university, to learn about the way we do things.
After spending time with our employees and customers, what our customers told us was that we have true Ladies and Gentlemen working in our hotels, not servants. At the same time, technology has made travelers expect a certain level of speed and customization, from hotel recommendations to being able to easily book leisure packages at their fingertips. As a business leader and knowing that time is the most precious commodity, opportunities to create excellence in the most basic form are in their abundance. We are in the business of providing exceptional service. We now have eight distinct luxury brands across the Marriott portfolio and it has made it more important than ever to ensure each brand promise is clear in the eyes of the consumer and delivered consistently. LG: What were some of the key challenges and major benefits being acquired by Marriott International in 1998? We remind our ladies and gentlemen what is important to our customers and reinforce this regularly through onboarding, training and regular communications like daily line-ups, repetition is important. LG: Besides Maine, what is your favorite place in the world to visit? Here at The Ritz-Carlton, everything is well-defined and thoroughly communicated. At The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, Herve Humler has 9 colleagues including Bob Kharazmi (Global Operations), Antonia Hock (The Ritz-Carlton Leadership Center)… Micah Solomon is a customer service speaker, hospitality keynote speaker and bestselling business author, most recently of High-Tech, High-Touch Customer Service, Customer experience consultant • customer service keynote speaker & webinar host • training • executive content creator and ghostwriter • influencer • company culture •. Herve Humler, President and Chief Operating Officer, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company: This is what we’ve always called here at The Ritz-Carlton, for decades before it became a popular buzzword in business, “empowerment.“ Empowerment is often manifested as the power of our employees to break away from the routine. We're not going to dictate to the customer what they should or should not wear.
I spoke with Mr. Humler about leadership, company culture, employee empowerment and the changing expectations of customers today.
We have a younger clientele and we see families travelling more with their children. This requires attention to seek out the moments where a break from the routine brings value to the guest: If you are server, you listen to the customer, and if he expresses a desire for something different from what you are currently doing now, you cater to it. 4445 Willard Ave It is the intrinsic value and deeper relationships with a brand that customers are looking for today. It is also created an attractive and added incentive for guests in a loyalty program and created tremendous opportunities for employee career growth and value for owners. HH: This acquisition provided us with tremendous resources and synergies in company best practices and systems. And employee engagement is critical to guest engagement.
They come from a range of sectors: automotive, energy, finance, fitness, healthcare, human resources, insurance, legal, retail, transportation and technology.
They want to be the first to reach a new place and engage with something new. Research told us that, 405,000 Ritz-Carlton guests had taken a cruise annually, which means that there is huge opportunity with our current customer base. It’s what you make of your employees.
At The Ritz-Carlton, we have 16 service values and three steps of service, and each one of our 40,000 ladies and gentlemen know them.
It is my job, and the job of every leader in this organization, to remind ourselves and those who work for us daily that we are not in the business of selling hotel rooms or F&B [food and beverage]. Solomon: How are customers changing? This keeps it alive throughout the company: The same service value we're reinforcing in New York will be focused on in Los Angeles and Beijing as well, that very same day. In fact, several leading brands, such as Apple®, attended our courses prior to creating their own legacy of legendary service. Was this created to establish a thought-leadership program to educate and share The Ritz-Carlton magic standard of excellence with others in the industry? Solomon: The focus on core values and other essential service standards at The Ritz-Carlton is clearly much more than lip service: My impression is that every employee in your organization–and I mean housekeepers as well as executives–knows every one of your brand's philosophical principles by heart. Summary: Herve Humler is 70 years old and was born on 06/06/1950.
The Company offers short term room rental, lodging, restaurant, spa, meeting space, personal celebration, and related services. It’s somewhere in the CEO’s office, and accumulates a thicker layer of dust every year.” The problem in these cases is that the vision or the mission of the company isn’t shared with the employees! LG: As you grow your business, and the noise level gets louder in your industry, how do you keep The Ritz-Carlton brand ‘fresh and relevant’ in today’s rapidly evolving business landscape? I have everything I want in life but through this great organization I am able to help our Ladies and Gentlemen succeed in so many ways for themselves and for our organization. At the same time, technology has made travelers increasingly expectant of a certain level of personalization, from hotel recommendations to endlessly customizable leisure packages.