Hospitality & Tourism

A Hotel Manager’s Handbook
189 Techniques for Achieving Exceptional Guest Satisfaction

Vincent P. Magnini, PhD
Carol J. Simon, MBA

A Hotel Manager’s Handbook

Published. Available now.
Pub Date: December 2015
Hardback Price:
Hard ISBN: 9781771883481
Paperback Price: $69.95 US
E-Book ISBN: 9781771883498
Pages: 256 pages
Binding Type: paperback

“This is a handy book that deserves a spot on any hotel manager’s bookshelf. It is loaded with practical and clever recommendations that, if implemented, will result, simply and clearly, in better run hotels. Experienced and new managers alike will find the book’s well-organized and clearly explained recommendations provide a must-do list of strategies, tactics, and training tools that will prove tremendously valuable as they seek to improve their property’s operations and profitability. I highly recommend the handbook and commend the authors on producing a management book that is so highly readable and action-oriented.”
—Stephen W. Litvin, Professor, Hospitality & Tourism Management, College of Charleston, South Carolina

Only available in paperback

This handbook offers 189 practical, actionable, and sometimes surprising techniques that can be applied in hotels to keep guests highly satisfied!

Best-selling author Tom Peters wrote a successful book titled The Little Big Things: 163 Ways to Pursue EXCELLENCE. This new book is the successful hotelier’s version. With this practical, easy-to-use handbook, there is no need to sift through pages of narrative in order to identify actionable tactics and strategies that can be applied at the property-level. The book presents one unique and actionable customer satisfaction technique on each page—a useful feature for busy managers.

The practical techniques presented here reflect the vast and varied experience of the authors. Dr. Magnini has been in hotel management and research for over two decades​, and Simon has more than 35 years of hands-on hotel management experience. Together, the authors have produced an array of highly effective guest satisfaction techniques from which even the most veteran hoteliers can learn and benefit. The techniques are not always obvious, and many have been gathered at various points from around the world and would be novel and surprising to guests if applied in different markets.

The customer service techniques presented cover each stage of the guest experience and also extend further to address areas needed to cultivate a culture of service excellence. The performance of hotel associates is a function of both their abilities and motivation-levels; therefore, techniques related to areas of employee recruitment, selection, training, and evaluation are key components in this book. Topics covered include:

  • frontline employee recruitment and selection
  • frontline employee training
  • frontline employee feedback and evaluation
  • the check-in experience
  • the guestroom experience
  • the public space experience
  • the food and beverage experience
  • the check-out experience
  • service failure recovery
  • forecasting and contingency plan
  • perceived waiting times
  • frontline employee incentives
  • signals of training transfer
  • closing the loop by acting upon guest feedback
  • Combines academic research with the practical experiences of the authors to derive actionable guest satisfaction techniques
  • Provides guest satisfaction techniques that cover every stage of the guest experience
  • Presents guest satisfaction techniques that were gathered at various points around the world
  • Suggests techniques related to areas of employee recruitment, selection, training, and evaluation
This book offers much of value to hotel managers to achieve satisfied guests, and hotel/lodging management students will find this a helpful tool for future work.


Section I: Enabling the Service Experience
1. Frontline Employee Recruitment and Selection
2. Frontline Employee Training
3. Frontline Employee Feedback and Evaluation

Section II: Delivering the Service Experience
4. The Check-In Experience
5. The Guestroom Experience
6. The Public Space Experience
7. The Food and Beverage Experience
8. The Check-Out Experience

Section III: Managing the Critical Drivers of Service Scores
9. Service Failure Recovery
10. Forecasting and Contingency Plans
11. Perceived Waiting Times

Section IV: Creating and Maintaining a Service Culture
12. Frontline Employee Incentives
13. Signals of Training Transfer
14. Closing the Loop by Acting Upon Guest Feedback



About the Authors / Editors:
Vincent P. Magnini, PhD
Associate Professor of Hospitality and Tourism Management,, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Virginia

Vincent Magnini holds a PhD in International Business/Marketing from Old Dominion University, an MBA from Wichita State University, and a BS in hospitality and tourism from Virginia Tech. He was recently ranked as one of the top 12 most prolific hospitality researchers worldwide. He has published five books and more than 100 articles and reports. Vince has been featured three times on National Public Radio’s (NPR) “With Good Reason,” once on NPR’s “All Things Considered,” and cited in the New York Times.

Carol J. Simon, MBA
Hotel General Manager

Carol Simon holds an MBA from Golden Gate University, San Francisco, California, and a BS in business from Arizona State University. She has over 35 years of hotel experience, including resorts, full-service hotels, and select-service hotels and has worked in regional roles as well. In addition, Carol has taught college-level hospitality classes. Carol has served on various tourism and community service boards. She has received the Georgia Hotelier of the Year Award from the Georgia Hotel and Lodging Association, as well as awards for achieving outstanding guest service and financial success from her hotels.

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