With the Northern Hemisphere Summer drifting away behind us, we wanted to take a few moments to reflect on where we are as an industry, and where we could head next.
The outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic has created global impacts that would have been unimaginable a year ago. As planes have been grounded and international travel has come to a halt, the ramifications of the pandemic have been keenly felt by the hospitality and tourism sector. Businesses, our friends and colleagues, are fighting for survival.
This unprecedented time has created anxiety and uncertainty for many in the hospitality sector and posed the question of how both organisations and the industry, will forge a path back to a prosperous and vibrant time for this dynamic sector?
As the hospitality and tourism industry changed seemingly overnight and travel rates plummeted around the world, new and innovative solutions have been needed to keep companies afloat as revenue and occupancy numbers fell. However, our teams are busier than ever, and budgets smaller than ever. Do we have the time, money and energy to come back stronger?
Some common themes are emerging that cost nothing but a little time. From some leaders and teams, we’re seeing a new spirit of collaboration, innovation and support. An optimism that we can create a new future for this industry based on the fundamental idea that whoever we are and wherever we work within this unique sector, we are all in this together, people will travel again, and the industry can be different.
A Tough Time for Hospitality
The hospitality sector has been one of the hardest hit by the Coronavirus pandemic. A report by the National Geographic in April found that The World Travel and Tourism Council projected a loss of 75 million jobs and USD2.1 trillion in revenue this year alone. People at all levels of the industry all over the world are struggling in this unpredictable time for the hospitality and tourism sector.
On current projections, an OECD report has stated that the international tourism trade is set to be down by over 60% this year, and if recovery is delayed further this number could rise to 80%, with some areas harder hit than others. At one point the pandemic saw occupancy rates in Italy drop 96% and occupancy rates in Britain drop by 67%.
Lockdowns, cancelled flights, closed borders and health fears completely change the hospitality industry overnight. Although signs of recovery are beginning to emerge it is becoming clear that recovery from the Covid pandemic will be a long and winding road.
The dramatic impacts of this crisis have been felt in all areas of the industry. Many individuals in the hospitality sector have lost their jobs, while others are now adapting to new roles and responsibilities. Many are working across sectors and coping with the stress of a reduced work force in order to keep companies afloat during these trying times.
As the situation continues to evolve we will see the full scope of the Covid pandemic on the tourism and hospitality sector. One thing that is abundantly clear though is that these have been incredibly trying times for the hospitality sector and the recovery of the industry will require perseverance, creativity and innovation to usher in a prosperous future in a thoroughly and permanently altered world.
We’re All in This Together
At a human level, the Covid pandemic, is unique in that it touches every people and we truly are all in this together. Every country, every organisation, every property and every individual in the hospitality and tourism sector has keenly felt the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic.
This means that through networking, facilitating open communication channels and working together, the industry has a greater chance of testing, sharing and adopting fresh ideas and unique solutions to the challenges everyone is facing. Reaching out to other industry professionals and growing your own professional network are great ways to help create success, exchange ideas and facilitate the creation of new plans that benefit the whole sector.
Being open to learning new things and undertaking new tasks, particularly in a dramatically reduced workforce is another avenue that helps to facilitate the creation of new ideas and aids in creating recovery plans at all levels of the industry. Functions are breaking down, so make time to take that training in another discipline – look outside your job description and learn about the science of revenue management, marketing, or adopting a user-centric product mindset.
Stories of support within the hospitality field have been seen all over the world and show the true nature of an industry built on understanding human connection. A Forbes report told of how spirit companies donated to help out-of-work bartenders, while various restaurants and charities have taken pay cuts or launched initiatives to help employees that have lost or are in danger of losing their income as a result of the pandemic.
It is this concept of supporting one another and working together to find solutions that underpins what makes this dynamic sector so unique. This spirit of collaboration and compassion also underscores one of the key reasons that the tourism and hospitality sector will rebuild and recover from this crisis.
When tackling this turbulent and uncertain time in the industry many people are feeling anxious about the future. With hospitality at times an already stressful field, it is not uncommon for people to be experiencing stress and uncertainty at this unprecedented time in the industry.
Our mission – The Growth Works is here to Support All Hospitality Workers
Organisations like The Growth Works Network are here to support those in the hospitality and tourism industry. The spirit of collaboration, innovation and support is so essential in ushering in a new and brighter future for the individuals, organisations and the wider tourism and hospitality industry during this trying time. The creation of The Growth Works Network was aimed at helping facilitate the sharing of knowledge and embracing the ideals of collaboration to help envision a clear way forward.
Grounded and experienced in this dynamic industry, The Growths Works Network is committed to creating an inclusive and open community for everyone in the hospitality sector – the only cost is a little time each month. The Programme aims to assist individuals in exchanging ideas, connecting with peers, finding solutions and offering personal support during and after the current crisis. The Growth Works Network is free for individuals and open to every person in every function, helping everyone to combat and adapt to this new and changed world of hospitality and tourism.
Knowing how important networking and communication is, particularly in an industry built on human connection, the Growth Works Network provides a platform for people to learn from each other, expand their communities and share their experiences. Through creating an open, global community, new ideas can be shared and the concepts of collaboration and innovation fostered.
Understanding how stressful this time can be, it also provides a place for people within the industry to listen to ideas and strategies and receive support and counselling in areas that they may be struggling. This service includes the opportunity to set up one on one sessions for anyone that may be struggling or would like to talk about the challenges they are facing in the industry as result of the Covid crisis.
The Coronavirus pandemic has impacted people and industries all over the world and has affected everybody in their own way. With travel grinding to a halt, organisations closing their doors and flights grounded all around the globe, the hospitality and tourism sector has been acutely impacted by the Covid pandemic. This is a tough time for the hospitality industry but working together we will find the innovative solutions and creative answers to the challenges everyone in the tourism sector is facing. In many areas this recovery phase is already starting to emerge.
It is important to remember that we are all in this together and through embracing the spirit of collaboration and innovation we will find the way forward. Feeling anxious at this uncertain time is natural and making connections within the industry and seeking support such as that offered by The Growth Works Network can assist in creating positive plans for moving forward.
This is a challenging time for everyone in the hospitality sector but working together we will find our way through the storm and create a future that the hospitality and tourism industry truly thrives in. Join us today by signing up to our mentorship programme.