Running a luxury hospitality brand isn’t easy. People are what make the experience, but finding the type of people who truly care about delivering a unique customer experience can be challenging. That’s why at Grand Hyatt Atlanta in Buckhead, they search for people with a “heart for hospitality.”
In an industry plagued by fierce competition and high employee turnover, recruiting the right people is paramount, and taking care of them is essential. “We care for people so they can be their best,” isn’t merely a slogan for Hyatt, it’s their company’s purpose and passion.
Laurie Russell, Human Resources Manager, for the Grand Hyatt in Atlanta, Georgia, is keenly aware of the special type of person who shines and succeeds in the hospitality business. “A heart for hospitality can’t be taught,” Laurie explains. She believes that genuine hospitality is inherent in an individual’s personality. Just the same, Grand Hyatt Atlanta goes to great lengths to develop people programs that demonstrate what it means to care. They believe that when the company cares for their employees, their employees will care for their guests.
Grand Hyatt Atlanta partners with recruiting experts to find the talent needed to deliver the type of service expected of a luxury brand. Grand Hyatt is the company’s premium brand, and there are less than 50 Grand Hyatt properties around the world. That’s why they take such care to develop recruiting, training, retention and career opportunities that attract the very best.
“We want people to feel happy about going to work and we want you to be comfortable that you are sending candidates to a great place,” Laurie explains to a room full of recruiting partners. She says that Hyatt is serious about “authentic hospitality,” and about its employees embracing and imbuing the company values of humility, mutual respect, creativity, fun, integrity and empathy.
Grand Hyatt Atlanta prides themselves on providing an atmosphere where people can grow, learn and advance. Many of the hotel’s management staff started out in front desk, food and beverage and other entry-level positions. They know in order to be successful, they have to create a place that offers opportunity for advancement and respects all people and all ideas, making every member of their team feel valued.
Hyatt is ranked #32 on the Fortune 100 Best Companies and is ranked #11 on the Best Multinational Company. Grand Hyatt Atlanta enthusiastically welcomes students and interns to their teams. They feel it is a great opportunity for young people to learn and advance in the hospitality industry.
“There’s so much diversity here, we want to make sure that everyone is heard,” Laurie tells us. “We ask our associates to deliver service that goes above and beyond, so as a company, we try to do the same for them.”
As an example, every new hire is asked to complete a “Recognition Questionnaire,” answering questions about personal preferences and favorite things. When it comes time for individual recognition, which Grand Hyatt Atlanta does regularly, employees receive a personalized showing of appreciation. Employees truly experience how guests feel when they go the extra mile to touch them by simply paying attention to detail and personalizing their experiences.
Grand Hyatt Atlanta believes in extending their hospitality to their business partners as well. Each year, they host a recruiter appreciation brunch. It’s a chance for Laurie and the hotel management team to express their thanks and an opportunity to showcase Hyatt’s commitment to its customers and employees.
After learning about Hyatt’s values and people commitment, some of us were torn between asking Laurie for a job or the front desk for a room!
But the one thing we all agreed upon? Hyatt hospitality was definitely delivered from their hearts.