Category Archives: Innkeeping

Insightful Questions Can Lead to Remarkable Results

lead to remarkable results

 

Insightful questions can lead to remarkable results. It is amazing how just thinking about the answers to questions (like the following listed below), can give innkeepers more clarity about what should be their priorities. It is important to regularly examine your goals (as well as the reasoning behind those goals).

 

  • What do you (and your inn) have to offer? (like innkeeper strengths & on-site amenities)
  • What do you excel at? (culinary skills, event management, hospitality, teaching, organization, property management, etc.)
  • Is your inn known for something? (the best place for…)
  • Do you have a mission statement or overall goal? (why do you exist?)
  • What is your focus? (this depends upon your inn’s purpose)
  • Who do you serve? (these are your current guests)
  • Who needs what you offer? (these are your ideal guests)
  • What problems do you solve? (this can explain why people visit you)
  • Why should they want your accommodations and services? (the benefits you offer)
  • What would make a lasting difference in your guests’ lives? (how you encourage repeat visits)
  • How do you (or will you) get your message across? (blog, social media, website, advertisements, press, etc.)
  • How do you (or will you) follow up to guest inquiries? (do you note who called and the questions they asked?)
  • Do you stay in touch with your guests? If so, how and how often? (weekly or monthly email list, mailing list, phone call, text, etc.)
  • Going forward, what is your plan of action? (how can you attract more of your ideal audience?)

It is a good idea to have a little notebook with you to record any random (yet potentially useful) thought that comes into your head. You never know when you may think of the next big thing your inn could do or offer! 

Guests are also a great source of information and inspiration. What do your guests compliment you about that you do have (or provide)? What do your guests ask you about that you currently do not have (or provide)? Read over your guest reviews as well as reflect upon what they have told you in person. Thus, insightful questions can lead to remarkable results!

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What Motivates You?

what motivates you

 

 

What motivates you?  What inspires you?  If you know the answer to those two questions, it can give you the strength and energy you need to persevere day in and day out.

 

 

 

How did you come to be bed and breakfast owners?  Whether you are new to inn-keeping or have been hosting guests for years, we all need to remind ourselves why we do what it is we do.

Your reasons can include:

  • Like to have your own business
  • Love entertaining guests
  • Enjoy cooking gourmet breakfasts
  • Get to tend a beautiful and fruitful garden
  • Appreciate meeting new people
  • Skilled at managing the books
  • Having fun decorating and remodeling
  • Have a vision for its growth

When you remember why, then it becomes easier to tackle daily chores and responsibilities. You are building your future and allowing your guests to have a wonderful experience they will always remember.

When your guests have a great experience, they are likely to let their friends know all about it and to return at a later date. Some of your best visits will be from returning guests to which you had a special connection.

 

Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography

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Encourage Yourself Every Day

encourage yourself every day

 

 

Bed and breakfast owners, do you want to know a good way to encourage yourself every day?  For the rest of the year you can write down something on a little piece of paper and fold it and put it in a jar.  Then, at the end of 2014, you can read all of your little notes!  You could write notes about:

 

 

 

  • Something funny a guest said
  • An unexpected good surprise
  • A compliment you were told
  • An unlikely happy coincidence
  • A blessing or favor from someone
  • Something that went smoother than you thought
  • A welcome phone call you received
  • A great breakfast guests loved
  • Something that made you laugh
  • Anything else you want to recall at the end of this year

You are giving yourself a present every day by adding to the jar.  At the end of the year, get ready for laughter, tears of joy, and fond memories! It is important to encourage yourself every day!

 

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The Hospitality of Hosting

hospitality of hosting

A gracious host is very welcoming and immediately sets you at ease when you arrive. Hospitality is the relationship between the guest and the host, or the act or practice of being hospitable. This includes the reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers. It is important, as bed and breakfast owners and innkeepers, that guests feel at home in your home.

Hospitality is associated with etiquette and entertainment. It involves showing respect for one’s guests, providing for their needs, and treating them as equals. The word hospitality derives from the Latin hospes, meaning “host”, “guest”, or “stranger”.

 

Hospitable Things To Say

  • “Make yourself at home.”
  • “What brings you here to stay with us?”
  • “Do you need more fresh towels or pillows?”
  • “Can I get you anything else?”
  • “Feel free to select from our DVDs and books to take back to your room during your stay here.”
  • “Would you like to know about some fun things to do in our area?”
  • “Your homemade fresh-cooked breakfast will be ready at….”
  • “Would you care for some tea this afternoon?”

As an innkeeper, you will need to know the fine art of how much to interact with your guests. Be available to answer their questions, but also be sensitive to their need for privacy.  Take your cue from the guests themselves since each person is different.  This way you tailor your hospitality to match the needs and wants of your guests. That is the hospitality of hosting!

 

Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography

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Happy New Year 2014

Happy New Year 2014

Happy New Year 2014! I love New Year’s Day! We all have a fresh start to accomplish and achieve our goals.  More importantly, to grow closer to becoming the kind of person we would want to be around.

There are so many individuals that come through the doors of bed and breakfasts.  Each one is special and every person has a story.  If it is appropriate and the guests are talkative with you, take time to listen to them.

They will remember you as the innkeepers who were very hospitable, went out of their way to serve them, and cared enough to hear what they had to say.  As innkeepers, you have an opportunity to bless your guests with the most positive lodging experience ever.

Happy New Year 2014 from Kristi Dement and her team at Bed and Breakfast Blogging!

Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography

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Stay Inn-spired

stay inn spired

 

 

Especially around the holidays, it is easy to feel like you have too much to do to actually have time to enjoy it.  Remember that, as a bed and breakfast owner, you are helping to make other people’s Christmases very special so it is important to stay inn spired.

 

Even if you cannot take time off from inn-keeping, you can still be inn-spired. Think of at least 5 positives that happened this year associated with your bed and breakfast. Now think of 5 positives you would like to see happen in 2014.

When you focus on the good, you tend to get more of it.  You can make your bed and breakfast even more successful in the coming New Year.

What actionable steps can you take toward making those 5 things happen in 2014?  The secret to success is step by step. A little bit each and every day turns what seems impossible into a reality!  The solution is making progress every day toward achieving your bed and breakfast goals and to stay inn spired.

 

Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography

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