Hello again... for those of you who don't know, my name is Kyndra Vorster and I hate waste!
Firstly if you and your bar have now gone plastic straw free please let us know so we can tell Santa to take you off of the naughty list! If you haven't then I am pointing my finger at you... can you feel it? I'm doing it right now.
So. This week is going to take a slight turn. We were going to give another lecture on how wasteful we are and don't worry we'll get back to that, however, we found some interesting information out recently and wanted to share it with you lovely people.
We have been in touch with a hospitality consultant whose company analyses customer feedback to help businesses grow, find their USP and reduce brand gap.
His recent feedback results showed that great customer service is no longer a high priority.
In fact public perception of environmental issues are at an all time high and ranked secondary to cleanliness.
Now we're not saying customer service is no longer key, in fact quite the opposite! I'm sure we can all agree that good customer service can rescue poor food or drink but poor customer service can ruin great food or drink. However, good customer service is now seen as a given and expected in the hospitality industry as quite frankly what would we be without it? Yodel? (If you know you know)
After being told this we went on to do our own research and found studies, information and articles to support this (controversial?) information.
As we are finding out more and more about our need to be environmentally responsible so are our customers. It is therefore becoming ever more prevalent that we understand our footprint, accept Corporate Social Responsibility and do what we can to act upon it.
An Edelman study has shown that as consumers are becoming more environmentally aware in their own homes, recycling where possible (sometimes getting fined if they don't), using low energy lightbulbs, installing electricity readers etc there is now an expectation that businesses have similar environmental and social policies in place. Consumers are choosing products and companies that are aware of their environmental impact and actively advertise what they are doing to help. In fact 70% of consumers from over nine countries in a study showed we as consumers are willing to pay more for a brand that showed conscious environmental responsibility and supported a good cause. It also showed that there was increased trust and loyalty by customers in the brand. After all, isn't trust and loyalty what we all rely on?
STEPS TO SUCCESS
⁃ Its all good talking about it but sometimes doing it can be harder than we think. Ensure that any polices you implement are doable, manageable and achievable.
⁃ Whether through social media, PR and press, menu cards, A Boards or general chats with customers, make sure where possible your guest knows about what you're doing be it big or small, abandoning straws or composting your fruit waste, as mentioned this is all proven to increase trust and loyalty in your brand.
⁃ Communicating policies with guests will help get them involved however, having all your staff onboard with ideas always makes things easier. According to Ignite Hospitality, a recent study carried out by London Met University found that 60% of staff interviewed would like to be more involved in Sustainable Policies. Maybe ask your staff about their views and ideas?
⁃ Imagine any and all waste you threw away in one day followed you around like that smell after you've had McDonald's for lunch. You couldn't ignore it for long, it comes down to this; We all live here and it’s high time we stop telling ourselves it's some else's job, it's someone else's issue and started taking responsibility for our own actions.
⁃ Just do it! EU legislation is on its way and it won’t be long before your business is forced – by law – to meet high environmental standards so you may aswell start now!