How LinkedIn Can Improve Your Hotel Career (10 Ways)
10 Essential Reasons How Hotel People Can Benefit from LinkedIn.
Already have a LinkedIn account? Congratulations, you’re way ahead of the rest! – but keep reading.
LinkedIn can be a valuable part of your hospitality career. I actually wrote this for you to learn and share with your hotel staff, management, vendors and your entire hospitality network… They’ll thank you later.
Did you know LinkedIn now has over 500 million users?
So how many of them are hotel people? (If you know, tell me cause I don’t -ha!)
That’s 500 million opportunities to advance your career, mindset and maybe even make more money!
You won’t find pesky cat videos and pics of what your grandma ate for dinner on LinkedIn.
LinkedIn is the social media channel of choice for most business professionals. If you want free exposure to millions worldwide, then you need to be on this network.
With more than 15k+ connections, I’m proud to say LinkedIn has helped build my leadership, authority and hotel business. And it can help you too.
Here are 10 reasons how LinkedIn can help build your hotel career.
1) Hospitality Groups – Learn From Others
Ever felt stuck because you couldn’t find a solution to your problem? I have. That’s when I reach out to my favorite LinkedIn Groups. I ask questions and get answers.
LinkedIn’s interest groups make the exchange of ideas and information a game changer. Groups such as Global Hotels Sales & Marketing Professionals, Hospitality Trends, Hotel Industry Professionals Worldwide, offer a wealth of information. Gain insight from leading Hotel CEO’s and experts in the department you are currently employed in or aspire to be, as part of your professional development.
Have hotel questions? Ask fellow hotel operators about their experience using the latest in cloud-based software, versus legacy management systems. Learn from top industry hoteliers on how to effectively manage food and labor costs and in turn provide value from your expertise and insight. Discover new groups here.
2) Stay Informed of the Latest Hotel News & Trends
I love this feature on LinkedIn. The Latest News Section acts a portal of information for the hospitality sector publishing daily news referring to hotel operations, new brand standards, real estate, hotel development, hotel chains, associations, and events. If you love technology, then you’ll find this section valuable, filled with cool ways to make your hotel more tech-savvy.
Stay informed of the latest research from prestigious universities, such as Cornell. A daily intake of micro-learning-content delivered in small segments, will keep you at the forefront and abreast of cutting edge industry news and trends. Getting the latest hotel news at your fingertips can help keep you informed and ahead of the game.
3) Connect with Vendors & Suppliers
I’m almost certain every vendor you do business with at your hotel is on LinkedIn, sharing ideas, strategies and ways to improve your business. Finding vendors, suppliers, manufacturers and other third-party connections is a breeze with LinkedIn. The platform is designed to bring together buyers and sellers of services and products in the hospitality. It is essential not to mention mutually valuable to develop and enrich relationships with suppliers and those who support the success of your business.
To know more about your vendors or research a potential new supplier, you can follow them to gain access to detailed information and discover more about their business products and company culture. You can discover recommendations from current and past clients, and you can strike up an open conversation with employees and Directors before deciding to conduct business together. Use the search tool bar at the top to discover new companies, vendors and suppliers. Click here to watch the how-to video
4) Build Your Network
LinkedIn makes building your network pretty easy. You get to choose who you would like to connect with on LinkedIn, such as past co-workers, classmates, faculty, employers, and even Fortune 500 Executives. You can build and sustain a meaningful relationships of people in your industry and beyond. Be easily discovered by someone who needs expertise, experience and the passion you provide, in how to deliver best customer service practices to guests. Develop and deepen your network with second and third-degree networks of your existing connections.
People do business with people they know, like and trust.
I always say, you are your own brand. Even if you’re working for someone else. Build your personal brand and diligently nurture your connections. Import your contacts from gmail and benefit from having all of your business connections in one place. Search for people by job title and reach out to individuals either directly or through groups.
5) Find a Hospitality Career
Let’s face it, not all of our jobs have been dream jobs. Your current position just might be your stepping stone to something new. Thousands of hospitality jobs are being made available to you on LinkedIn. All you have to do is apply.
Hotel human resources professionals and recruiters are on LinkedIn, and those who are hiring are busy viewing profiles. In fact not being on LinkedIn could be considered detrimental to your job search. Actually, a person with a well-optimized profile is 40 times more likely to receive job opportunities via LinkedIn. Make it easier for an employer to find you ie their next Hotel GM or Director of Ops.
You can also use the site to search for jobs, and make connections with people who can help you and even set up job alert emails. Using the advanced search feature, you will be able to identify people who are in a particular role and company, or you can narrow your search down by location. Follow companies that you admire and would like to work for and keep an eye open for any job vacancy updates. We know that often when it comes to job hunting “it’s not what you know but who you know,” making LinkedIn a mighty tool in navigating the hidden job market. Trust me, I’ve helped many of my LinkedIn connections find an outstanding hospitality career. It works!
6) Learn From Hotel Brands
Whether you’re affiliated with a large franchise brand or a smaller chain, you are bound to gain new and eye-opening insights from numerous hotel brands. These worldwide brands are sharing the latest information on new initiatives, prototypes, standards, research and development. Hilton Worldwide has done a great job at sharing ideas on the LinkedIn platform.
Independent hoteliers can also find huge value in becoming a user on LinkedIn. Most independent hotels probably don’t have access to the vast amount of resources that branded hotel chains have. The LinkedIn platform offers the ability to learn from brands who have defined strategies and have established best business practices.
7) Improve Your Hospitality Skills with Courses
There are a wealth of courses available on LinkedIn, from defining innovative customer service techniques to working with irate customers or how best to manage your team efficiently. You can quickly enhance your skills with expert-led videos and tutorials and access them anytime, anywhere. You can even incentivize your employees to take advantage of the opportunity to gain new skills.
Each week select a course that you determine would be worthwhile and if team completes enough of those courses over a set period, then they could be eligible for bonuses, extra paid time off, vacations and other benefits. This is a useful way of letting your staff know you appreciate the fact that they want to better themselves through learning.
The courses are available for free with a LinkedIn Premium subscription for individuals or a paid Enterprise option. Learn more about courses here.
8) Interact With Your Customer Base (Corporate Guests)
LinkedIn offers a perfect platform to interact with your customer base, with surveys, messaging and comments. If done right, this can provide an ideal means for achieving excellent customer satisfaction levels and showing that you are a company that cares. Guests genuinely appreciate feeling like their voice is heard, so interacting with them via the public and private messaging options is a great way to resolve issues and demonstrate that you are listening to your customers as well.
You could create a LinkedIn group just for your corporate customers and message group members once a week. Your sales team can start and maintain discussions in your group on a daily basis and personally connect with potential guests when they reach out. LinkedIn offers sales professionals many avenues to gain the attention of your ideal customer.
9) Promote Your Company Story
As a hotel of any size, you need to have a well-developed business presence on LinkedIn. An excellent place to promote your business is with a LinkedIn company page that can enable your followers to receive updates, insights and showcase your thought-leadership.
Share your own brand/property’s story and opinions and benefit from increased engagement with industry peers, prospective customers, and even potential new hires.
Provide your perspective and engage in conversations covering a wide range of customer-centric strategies and provide insight into your leadership skills that convey your business ethos, ethics, and company culture.
10) Access Experts in the Hospitality Industries
I saved the best for last!!
While part of networking is connecting with people you already know, an important part of networking also includes reaching out to interesting people you do not yet know and who may not be specifically related to your industry.
I have made more hotel industry connections on LinkedIn than any other resource, including conventions, meetings and regional events. I really enjoy connecting with like-minded hotel people and experts I look up to such as, Customer Service Expert, Shep Hyken.
Perhaps you are interested in finding a well-respected lawyer or hotel broker. Do a scan of your network to evaluate the professional diversity.
Identify past colleagues or friends who are in different fields and different companies and make growing your network a deliberate part of your weekly routine. People who are outliers in your network to recommend and introduce you to people who may prove helpful down the line. Rather than the apparent value of connecting with people in the hospitality industry and people like ourselves, expend the extra effort to ensure your network is an exciting mix of people from different professions.
As you see having a presence on LinkedIn can be beneficial to your hotel career. If you’re not on this growing platform, create an account and watch yourself thrive!
What’s one thing you find valuable about LinkedIn? Comment below.
Have a super successful day!
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About Rupesh Patel
Hi! I’m Rupesh Patel, hotel owner and founder at SmartGuests.com, a U.S. based company that helps businesses like yours, improve guest interactions by implementing customer service training, strategies and marketing tools. My hands-on experiences and creative ideas have been featured in industry magazines, websites, books and blogs. Today, I’m here to share my passion for entrepreneurship, customer service and marketing with you.
Read my Blog: www.smartguests.com/blog