Happy holidays to you and your hotel family

With this blog post debuting just a couple days before Santa does his rounds, it’s the perfect opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and a great holiday break overall. I’ve loved writing about various topics in the hospitality industry, and I admire reading and responding to those individuals who leave comments. Let’s all keep up the good work heading into 2014!

That said, I have a very important message for you to take to heart. The holidays are a time to spend with your friends, loved ones and relatives. But never forget that you have two families. One pertains to your spouse, parents and children. The other is your hotel family — those you see day after day at work or sometimes at company events.

These are the people who, whether you are conscious of it or not, have enriched your life, if only through a polite conversation or passing smile in the hall. Hotels can only be managed effectively with a trained team working in harmony. Whatever your disposition to your colleagues, don’t dwell on any negatives. Be thankful for the contributions your fellow employees have made over the past year, and be steadfast with your praise henceforth.

To this end, ask yourself: What have you done this past month or year to show your gratitude for your colleagues’ hard work? Maybe you’ve hosted an afternoon staff-appreciation party. Maybe you’ve gone on a company outing. Maybe you’re planning a holiday buffet for the coming week. Or perhaps you’ve written each of your team members a personal handwritten note, thanking them for their specific efforts. (Lest I forget the much-sought Christmas bonus!)

So, as you unwind this holiday break, don’t be an Ebenezer Scrooge. This year has been very kind to the hotel industry, with a sharp recovery from the lulls of the recent recession, fascinating innovations spreading worldwide and fresh brands destined to usher us into a new era of hospitality. Think of your staff, think of your hotel family and enter 2014 with the best of spirits.