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The Lewis Partnership is in my opinion a very well organised company. Through their description in the first edition of their Occasions Magazine the reader gets in a “world of dreams” hopping to be there and to have the possibility to see it with the own eyes. The description is fantastic and you become the wish to be there and to know personally such a loving place.
The employees describe the organisation as “excellence as a culture, a work ethic and a way of life” and “a unique and very special place”. The two most important managers Chris Lewis and Mark Lewis illustrate their both hotels as “the first choice for all occasions.” They want the costumer to be the King and they want to spoil the clients so that they spend an unforgettable time in the hotel.
By offering luxury and elegance, by giving only the best service and by realizing the wishes of the costumers they show that they have a very well designed Customer Benefit Package. The clients appreciate very much the services offered by the hotels. This is shown with the example of the couple who chose the Moat House Hotel to celebrate their wedding. The couple was very pleased by the flexibility of the hotel manager.
They were even allowed to change pictures and to put some own ones to adorn the rooms.
The fact that this couple chose this hotel again for their first anniversary and for the naming ceremony of their first child shows that they were very satisfied with the service offered by the hotel. In the magazine they also express the careful choose of their providers of foods, flowers and coffee. The Lewis Partnership remarks also the high quality of their restaurants and point out the 2 AA Rosette standards. The winning of some awards is also a sign for the good quality delivered in the hotels. (Occasions Magazine / First Edition)
2. What is a Service Concept and why is it important to such a company? The service concept of a company is the sum of the facilities and the deals that a company offers to their costumers. These depend on the point of view of the company by which the organisation wants the costumers, their employees and the stakeholders to perceive it. The point of view of the company depends on the initial vision that the creator of the company had when he or she started with the business.
In the case of the Lewis Partnership they started with the idea of transforming the manor house into a pub and a small restaurant. After the vision they created the mission, a very difficult task because it is not easy to design and to change the mission once it is created. Later on when they took over the Swan Hotel they applied the same mission to this second business changing only some specific hotel own details.
The mission is the way of doing things and the way that they wanted to be perceived by their environment. They decided to develop a place where people can enjoy holidays, a business travel or a simple dinner. They worked hardly over years and this way they build up on this idea. Step by step they expanded. They transformed the pub into a small restaurant. They worked very hard and they had big difficulties due to the lack of experience.
But the business worked always better and later on due to the increasing demand of the costumers they decided to transform the restaurant into a hotel. After an extensive research they started the project. Due to the importance of having qualified personnel they employed an experienced team of professionals. The costumers were so satisfied with the service that the Manor house has been repeatedly named “the most popular civil wedding venue”. The well going Moat House Hotel and the opening of the Swan Hotel were the result of taking exceptional care of the costumers; they adapted the needs of the costumers and innovated their business on an ongoing basis.
Another very important task is to be a good leader. The bottom line for all leadership efforts is customer satisfaction. Continued patronage ensures company’s success. The supervisors have some contact with customers because they are working leaders, but there are the employees of the service team who handle the bulk of the customer contacts. That is why the importance of satisfied employees is so important to provide good service to the costumers.
Desired behaviours only will take place when each leader and their respective managers and supervisors start modelling these behaviours to those they manage. When employees see their leaders actually leading by example, they feel good about their work and are more motivated to satisfy their guests. Guests and customers in general feel good when they deal with companies who seem to treat their people well. (www.hotelexecutive.com). In the case of the Lewis Partnership managers and the rest of the staff have a very good relationship. The employees have the possibility to be rewarded by themselves with the Above&Beyond awards. Management and rest of employees work together they built a strong team and the work atmosphere is very good.
It is also important to point out that the services sector has grown steadily in the last 20 years. People not only want to be in a nice hotel and to pass there some days for holidays or business. They want to get more for their money. The competence is always harder and only satisfied clients choose the same hotel twice. The surroundings and the installations of a hotel are very important but you will not reach a second visit of a client if you do not offer a very good service.
The Swan Hotel has a three stars category and the Moat House a four Starts category and this is also an important reason to deliver a good service to customers. Of course hotels with fewer stars should also give a good service but when a person books a table or a room in a four stars hotel he has a higher service expectation. (www.moathouse.co.uk) (www.theswanstafford.co.uk) 3. What features of a service delivery system appear to make this company successful in delivering quality service to their customers?
A service delivery system is a mix of capabilities provided through resources. A good service delivery system depends on the coordination and effectiveness of all the characteristics around the service provided. In the case of a hotel the management has to answer many key questions and take many decisions to create a Costumer benefit package. They have to answer questions like: what wants the costumer, what are his needs, which are his preferences.
The management needs to design procedures and to teach the staff on them to reach a high satisfaction by the costumers. A very helpful way for employees to follow the procedures is creating standard operating procedures, where each procedure is fixed step by step. It is also very important to measure the results to evaluate their effectiveness and to make improvements with the feedback of the environment. What is a Costumer benefit package? It is a combination of tangibles and intangibles that comprise a service. (Class Notes March 2004) For example:
Why is a Costumer Benefit Package so important? Because of the upward trend in the business service sector over the past 20 years and also because competitive edge starts with a solid Costumer Benefit Package. It is vital to develop the CBP because it is a very useful tool for service providers to clarify what they do and do not offer through their services also because it helps to define service providers’ responsibilities to customers. In today’s service oriented economy, it is important that companies develop a strong CBP to stay competitive. The management should keep in mind that there are many factors to take into consideration while designing an appropriate CBP for their company. (www.freequality.org)
According to the GAP model, the personal needs of the costumer are the most important for the hotels. Especially GAP 5, which is; expected service contra perceived service is a force for the Lewis hotels. This is where they have the chance to impress the customers, and according to themselves, they certainly do. From the first step they take into one of the two hotels, they are meet by a staff member and taken care of. The whole stay is also carefully planed where the customer gets the opportunity to choose exactly what he or she wants in his or her room. You can say that the service and quality is reliable (The Lewis Partnership Magazine).