We are facing a critical time in our industry. Entry-level management salaries are exactly that… entry level. However, we are seeing more and more millennials walk through the door expecting to make Director money for an entry-level transient rooms, catering manager, or sales position. Their disappointment after a few months often leads to position turnover, which hurts the operation in several different ways.

So, how do we stop this from happening in today’s climate?

Honesty Best Policy for Hospitality Salary Expectations

Lying to a candidate as they walk through the door is a sure-fire way to have them walking right back out the door. Even if the property is jammed up for staff, putting a band-aid on the problem will only cost the operation money and fluidity in the overall performance of the department.

For both of those reasons, as well as starting off on the right foot with the candidate, it is important to be honest right out of the gate. However, while doing so, it is also an appropriate time to develop a career path for the new associate to keep him or her on target as well as giving the candidate real-time feedback on when he or she can expect to see not only more money but also a possible promotion.

Award Performance Not Seniority

Promotion based on seniority has taken down far too many operations in this industry. A Director has a rock star employee, but there is someone else in the department that has been there for much longer and is deemed to “deserve” the promotion. Well, then, why haven’t they been promoted yet? If you are considering giving a promotion to a newer employee but don’t based simply on the fact somebody else has been there longer, promotions are being handed out for all the wrong reasons.

That model has people looking to put in time rather than work. Simply put, there is no reward for doing more and working harder than the next person. They know they need to put in “X” number of months or years before they can even be considered for a promotion or raise, so what is the driving factor to get them to go above and beyond?

The bottom line here is that a successful department head will have a career “game plan” in place for their team members. Granted, there will be some employees that are simply happy with the status quo, and are very good at their jobs, but that will more than likely be the exception rather than the rule. By sitting down and having an honest conversation about what these employees want as well as defining how long it will realistically take them to get there will go a long way in not only retaining that associate, but in also giving them the drive they need to go above and beyond every day they walk through those doors for work.

Struggling to find the right executive-level hospitality managers for your operation? JDI Search is a hotel recruiter with a proven track record of putting candidates in place that are instrumental in taking hospitality operations to the next level and beyond. For more information about our services, please click here.

Photo By monkeybusiness