As West Indies Yacht Club Resort is one of the five renowned resorts in the British Virgin Islands, the managers and employees have to cope with cultural differences and nurture them to excel. However, there is low staff motivation due to the escalating tension between the expatriates and the locals, as well as a consistently high expatriate turnover. The internal operational problems would lead to an increase in the number of complaints when customers are dissatisfied with the declining employees’ performance, thus potentially hindering the future growth of the resort.
The following report includes detailed analyses of the problems in the resort, their underlying causes and their feasible solutions based on the observation respectively to restore harmony among the employees and therefore boost the profit of the resort. Analyses One of the major root causes regarding low staff motivation is the widening culture gap between the expatriates and the locals. For instance, most of the expatriates from America tend to be goal-oriented and individualistic.
They are more competitive compared to the Caribbean people as their job was not guaranteed in the US.
Thus, they would try their best to make a good impression. In contrast, the nurturing environment drives the Caribbean people to value the relationships with coworkers and quality of life. They have low incentives to work harder as the local employment laws guarantee their jobs and they grant salary increment every year without any performance evaluation. As a result, employees have lower motivation when the workplace atmosphere does not match what they value.
Additionally, the root cause of the escalating tension between expatriates and the locals is the ineffective management style used.
Expatriate managers have been using a behind-the-scene management style, which involves frequent supervision of the resort without actual involvement in its daily operations. They usually give vague directions instead of precise instructions. Because of the one-way communication, managers are distant from the employees; they do not know the needs of the locals as well as the actual problems of the resort. On the other hand, the locals have no chance to clarify the instructions. Thus, they often feel discontented as they do not understand the ambiguous instructions.
This root cause would further lead to misunderstandings and conflicts between the expatriates and the locals and hence intensifying the tension between them. Moreover, the high expatriate turnover rate problem is caused by the lack of management training for the expatriates and the strict employment regulations for the Caribbean government. Expatriates lack vital experience in communicating with people of different races. They do not understand the needs of the locals which led them to apply the behind-the-scene approach that is often used in the US in the resort. However, it is ineffective to manage Caribbean staff who value collectivism.
Because of the cultural difference and the poor results of the management style, the managers often feel demotivated very soon as they cannot manage their teams effectively. Consequently, the expatriate managers resign their jobs. Furthermore, the increasing number of complaints is because of the lack of sensitivity of the British Virgin Island vacation market. The Chicago headquarter has been continuing its overbooking practice for three years yet did not inform the guests in advance about the issue of over-booking the resort by additional 20 percent, as well as neglecting the opposition of the Room Division Manager and the employees.
Hence, when the number of customers was much larger than the resort’s capacity during the peak seasons, there was insufficient staff and rooms to serve the guests. This results to guests having to stay on boats until rooms are available for them. Therefore, the increasing number of complaints is inevitable. Recommendation I recommend you and other expatriate managers to hold meetings regularly; perhaps once a week either by division or organization-wise. Managers should take the lead to translate organization goals into the tasks, as well as motivate employees when necessary.
You should evaluate the employees’ performance as a whole and individually. Thus, predicaments would be prevented before they begin to affect daily routines and business. The meetings could be taken place at the beginning of the week, and hence could boost the staff morale efficiently and increase communication between managers and the employees. Also, you could organize informal gatherings such as some sponsored meals and trips after every peak season to form closer bonds between the expatriates and the locals.
During the gathering, sharing session with the locals, department heads and headquarter staffs can be organized. Expatriates, managers, and headquarter staff should participate in order to attain a more harmonious workplace atmosphere. In addition, the headquarter should send expatriate managers to some local management training programs every year. The training sessions allow the managers to adjust their management styles based on the local culture and learn to be sensitive to cultural differences, thus improving their communication skills to some extent.
The training course should have various role-playing situations; therefore, managers can simulate tackling random real-life problems. Finally, the resort should establish an effective appraisal system, which guests can carry out complaints or nomination anonymously. For poorly performed staff, managers could move them to a less favorable work position. For greatly appreciated staff, since they value their family, the resort should provide welfare on the staff’s family members such as offering a free hotel stay night which allows his/her family member to enjoy all the facilities at the resort for free.
As a result, the employees would have greater motivation for optimal performance. Conclusion In conclusion, the resort must provide better services to further enhance the reputation and boost the profits of West Indies Yacht Club Resort. The above feasible solutions could be established gradually to attain the final objective: narrowing the culture gap between the expatriates and the locals. By doing so, all three parties – WIYCR, employees, and customers – would benefit from the improvements.