The Ritz-Carlton Hotel (RCH) faces a dilemma, change its seven-day countdown process and succumb to the pressures of Millennium Partners (MP) or maintain the company’s proven strategy and open at a manageable occupancy level. By examining how RCH’s culture, leadership, and service contribute to the essence of the Ritz-Carlton we will show how RCH effectively opens new hotels and continues to operate at a high level. Essence – RCH is a service company that prides itself on high levels of customer satisfaction. By putting customer satisfaction first, we maintain the Ritz-Carlton Mystique. Culture – RCH sells an organizational culture dedicated to treating and developing employees as business ladies and gentlemen, enabling each individual to treat their customers in the same regard. Service – By ensuring that all employees are aligned with the RCH mission and providing them with the tools to do their job, RCH creates an environment where continuing levels of high quality service can be maintained. Leadership – “Ritz-Carlton leaders are responsible for stewarding an icon in the luxury market.” By assuming a transformational role during hotel opening and transitioning into a transactional role to maintain employee performance and motivation, RCH is able to continue as the gold standard of service industry. Our recommendation is to utilize the proven seven-day process during the Washington D.C. opening. What was once a 14-day countdown became a 10-day countdown and is now a well-packaged one-week orientation that produces the most effective experience for new RCH employees. Lengthening this process will only waste money and time, and will also diminish the powerful emotional significance that transforms normal people into RCH ladies and gentlemen. In order to conciliate MP, we suggest that RCH maintain the current orientation system but increase capacity at a higher rate within the first two months of opening (versus all at once); a compromise that satisfies both parties.
The Ritz-Carlton Hotel (RCH) faces a terrible dilemma: change its hallmark, seven-day countdown process, and succumb to the pressures of Millennium Partners (MP) — or maintain the company’s proven strategy and open at a manageable occupancy level. We will analyze the processes that create the Ritz-Carlton mystique and ensure hotel management has a sound strategy to balance exceptional service with exceptional profit. Findings and Analysis
Essence – Horst Schulze’s words, “our business is service” resonates throughout every aspect of RCH’s structure.9 Defining itself as more than a hotel company, RCH is a service company that prides itself on high levels of customer satisfaction. This forms the foundation of RCH’s hiring and training practices, operational methods, and strategic planning approach. To promote this concept, RCH regards employees as “ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen”.9 The essence is exemplified through the company credo, “The Ritz-Carlton Hotel is a place where the genuine comfort and care of our guests is our highest mission”.1 “Genuine comfort and care” is created by ensuring that employees are trained and motivated to be up to the task. Ultimately, individualized services such as custom pillows or the bartender keeping track of your favourite drink are the essence of the Ritz-Carlton experience. Culture – “Ladies and Gentlemen Serving Ladies & Gentlemen” is at the heart of RCH’s history and culture. RCH suggests that employees "join us, and not just work for us", creating a climate of inclusion and job enrichment.2 The hiring process treats all potential employees as if they were customers, beginning with a “warm welcome” and ending with a “fond farewell”.9 RCH sells an organizational culture dedicated to treating and developing employees as business ladies and gentlemen, enabling each individual to treat their customers with the same regard. Customer satisfaction depends on Ritz’s human...