Is it just me or do many of the Marriott associates with whom I come in contact seem to be more than a little bored with their jobs? I try to be as upbeat as I can when checking in, especially after a cross-country flight th,en a mad dash to the rental car lot, but they seem unthrilled, in many cases, to be the welcoming committee at a hotel.
Back in the day, this was far from the case: folks seemed genuinely interested in their jobs and their customers. I recall with great fondness being welcomed at a place where I stayed a number of times, and asked questions that were not in my profile, but had to come from personal experience with me on former dealings at the reception desk. Birthdays were remembered, drinks sent to the room without asking, special requests honored every time.
While the Platinum Premier and Life Platinum status that I've earned is often mentioned, it seems to be no more important to them than the credit card I'll be using to pay for the room.
Even at In'N'Out Burger (a place my doctor tells me to avoid) the greeting seems more sincere and more welcoming.
I might just be old and cranky--but I wish the folks on the other side of the desk would be a little more interested in making me feel welcome.
For the most part, I whole-heartedly agree with you. Seems to me that this a piece of a much larger problem in todays society. Back in-the-day, people were proud of the company they worked for and would do all they could to win you over. Their attitude showed it, and you couldn't help yourself from becomming infected with their enthusiasm. Today, it seems employees and employers alike have no loyalty to each other and the only reason for their relationship together is need. One needs a job, the other needs a warm body. Added to this, you have many employees that have taken what they consider a lessor job out of necessity and are only going through the motions, or, you have a young person who sees their current position or current employer as a stepping stone (no pun intended) to bigger and better things. Either way, we are losing the employee who simply gets up every morning and proudly goes about doing his job. I suppose many will disagree, but this is my opinion.
I think unfortunately you are right. We had a situation a few weeks ago staying at a brand new Spring Hill Suites property. There were no guests in the lobby or anyone checking in at the front desk, and we had to take an elevator that opened to the front desk. When the doors opened we walked towards the associate and he just looked at us like we were aliens! My husband was behind me and I just wanted to wait to see how long it would take for him to acknowledge us in some way or another, whether it be "hello" or "can I help you" or "are you checking in?" But alas, nothing. I actually stood there and waited to see if he would address me first and then finally he said "Name"......He wasn't rude, he just couldn't have cared less if we were there or not. I felt like I was intruding! However, I must say when we checked out, a different associate was there and he was more than eager to know how our stay was, what we thought of the new property, etc.....so I guess it just depends on people.
I believe everyone should be greeted with a smile and a kind word, no matter who you are- whether a Lifetime Platnium Member or if you are making your very first stay at a Marriott hotel. Everyone should feel welcome. I think it is becoming more commonplace in every job. Times are changing.
On a positive note, there are hotels that are consistently awesome at the front desk, especially the Courtyard Niagara Falls.....they are always welcoming and they are usually very busy.
Agreed in general, but I would suggest what you are experiencing probably has more to do with the franchisee's management style and perhaps emphasis on (or lack of) hospitality than the Marriott name. I know it's not supposed to be that way, that there are standards and expectations that a franchise needs to demonstrate in order to garner and retain the franchise, but based on my experience i believe that the hotel management/ownership is just as important as the brand name.
If you are ever in the Cincinnati or Columbus area, and spend a night in one of the Marriotts managed by Winegardner and Hammons, I think you will find a different and more welcoming experience than most. I am sure some of the other franchises are as good, W&H just stands out for me, and we've stayed in several of their hotels. No I don't own any of their stock.
Dear VP Player: thanks--you are right on target! Individual hotel management styles do change the behavior of all the employees, and in a franchised hotel there are wide variances.
I cannot own stock in In'N'Out Burger (since it's been privately held since its creation in 1948 and not franchised) but every employee is hired based on one criteria--their ability to smile, even in the face of adversity. Most are high school age and given what I recall of high school, it was a tough time to be smiling at all times. All start at around ten dollars an hour.
So, there is a way to make people more attentive--at least one fast food chain discovered that secret. When I am in Ohio I will certainly give these hotels a try, and thanks.