International Laborers Day, also known as May Day, is a day celebrated around the world on the 1st of May. It is a day that celebrates laborers and the working class.

Hard-working, capable, and dedicated staff are the lifeblood of the hospitality industry. They face the guests, they deal with mountains of requests, and they deal with crises large and small on a daily basis. As such, May Day is the perfect opportunity to show them some appreciation and make them feel like their hard work is appreciated.

So, let’s take a look at some ways you can celebrate May Day at your hotel. Just a heads up, it’s not all decorations and events… although there is some of that as well.

1. Providing Job Security

Job security is one of the top priorities of almost all workers. It affects their future planning, along with their current living standard. Workers of the hospitality industry are no different.

Providing your hardworking staff with some assurance that their jobs are safe can really boost morale. An HR email sent during a difficult time such as the COVID-19 pandemic can really reassure a lot of worried staff. We know that things aren’t as cut and dry during these trying times but we would argue that your staff need job security now more than ever.

If your budget can support the staff you have, you should take care of them well. Staff that are well taken care of are more likely to stay and perform well.

2. Introduce Bonuses and Incentives

One way of motivating people is to give them tangible, achievable goals. Offering your staff bonuses to their salary (perhaps as commissions) or other incentives can help motivate them a great deal.

One way you could try this is to offer a bonus to the staff with the highest number of upselling and cross selling. When done positively, this can create healthy competition within the organization to perform better. However, this can create needless internal strife between staff, so we don’t recommend it.

Another way to do this is to set a target that any number of staff can reach. This way, teamwork is incentivized as well. In fact, awarding bonuses to teams can further augment this.

3. Host a Staff Appreciation Event

This one is the most straightforward. To show that you appreciate your staff, why not consider throwing an event for them?

Hospitality staff spend days upon days serving the needs of others. As such, it could be a very positive experience for them to actually BE served for once. A dinner would be a good start, but you can spice things up with a talent show or music or any other leisurely party activity that they can enjoy without pressure or worry.

One other way to make such an event fun is to host a sports tournament of some sort. Whether it is football, volleyball, cricket, or any other sport, making it an inter departmental competition creates solidarity within the department while giving your staff some much needed levity.

4. Protect your Staff

This next point might be a bit contentious for some, but we felt it was important enough to include regardless. Basically, the idea here is that you should protect your staff or have their backs in certain situations.

There is an adage that has been poisoning all customer service jobs for a few decades now. Originally popularized by retailers such as Harry Gordon Selfridge, the term was supposed to mean that service staff should give high priority to customer satisfaction. What it does NOT mean is that the customer is always right about everything, even going beyond what they want to spend money on.

It might be an unpopular opinion to say this but not all customers or guests, in this case, act in good faith. Your staff can and likely do face rudeness, inconsiderate behavior, entitled demands, and much worse. If they feel like they cannot come to you and get a fair and unbiased hearing, they are most likely going to start resenting the job and the management.

Most business owners are hesitant to side with the staff over the customers because they are afraid of potential loss of revenue. However, we would argue that losing capable, experienced staff is ultimately a bigger loss than losing one guest. So we ask that you consider listening to your staff and siding with them if the grievance against them is not justified.

May Day is as good a day as any to start.

5. Give them the Best Tools

In the modern digital age, there are many tools designed to streamline all the processes involved with hospitality.

We are now past the days when the front desk handles calls for room service and service is delayed due to being unable to communicate with the right staff. There are digital solutions for all of this. It is up to you to provide the right tools to your staff to help them do their jobs better.

So, do some research into digital tools, find the right one, and consider using May Day as an opportunity to introduce it to your staff. The only question is… what is the right tool? But more on that below...

And there you have it. Five different ways through which you can celebrate May Day, and more importantly, show your hardworking staff that you value them. After all, without staff, who will serve the guests?

If at this point, you were still thinking about the last point and wondering what kind of digital tool could help your staff the most, we would like to direct your attention to TripKit.

TripKit is our easy-to-learn, easy-to-use, highly customizable digital concierge app. It comes with a guest app through which your guests can browse all your services and facilities through their smartphone. But more importantly, it also comes with a staff app that allows your staff to view, respond to, and manage all kinds of bookings, service requests, food orders, etc. while on the go.

If you’d like to learn more, please head on over to our website and take the tour!