Most industries have annual conventions where hundreds (even thousands) of people gather to learn, network and grow their business. The hospitality industry has many annual conventions, but why should you attend? After all, going to a convention not only costs money, but also costs you time away from your business. Here are three reasons why attending a hospitality convention is in your best interest and the best interest of your business.
Just One New Thing
Conventions can be overwhelming even to the most seasoned convention-goers. With so many classes, workshops and networking opportunities, a person could easily become overloaded. Well, the truth is, you’ll never be able to take in every single thing offered at a convention, but the things you do learn could have far-reaching rewards for your business. Think of convention-going as an opportunity to work ON your business rather than IN your business; an activity that is critical to the health of your hotel.
What if you went to a hotel industry convention with a very simple goal – to learn just one new thing? And what if that one new thing saves you $50,000 a year in operating cost for the next ten years? Or what if that one new thing enabled you to vastly improve your staff’s attitude and loyalty; making them the best employees you’ve ever had? Think about that for a moment…would it have been worth the travel costs and the time away from your business? You bet it would! So approach conventions with this just one thing” goal and you’ll likely walk away with a goldmine of information.
Experience A Hotel as a Guest
Going to a hospitality convention gives you the chance to experience a different hotel and see how they do things from a guest’s perspective. When you go to a convention with that idea in your head, it becomes a research trip as well as a convention trip (two birds – one stone). Choose a hotel that interests you…perhaps a service level just above your current hotel. Pay attention to everything they do and how they do it – from the front desk staff greeting to the carpet in the hallways to how fast housekeeping delivers your extra pillow. Notice it all and take notes about what you liked and disliked as a guest. Everything looks different from a guest’s perspective and you will likely find things you can take back and implement at your own property.
Position yourself as the hotel authority
People like hanging out with experts in their industry. Going to hospitality conventions can help you set yourself apart as an industry authority. The more you attend these kinds of events, the more you will get to know the inner circle and the way they work. If you stay active and engaged, you could become a speaker at next year’s event; positioning yourself as an industry leader. When you stay involved over the long-term, you’re more likely to be asked to speak at the events or to write articles for industry publications. This can also help on the client side because they like doing business with those who are celebrated in their industry. So get out there…mingle…network…and get to know who’s who at the next hospitality convention.
Going to a hospitality convention is a great way to grow your business and conduct guest research all while working toward positioning yourself as a leader in your field. Find the next available convention and book your tickets today. You’ll be so glad you did.