The Times they are a changing…and it is time for another rant!
I have been in this incredible industry for well over a decade and like most people involved, in whatever shape or form, in the Hospitality industry, felt that it was time for a change!
The key to the success of any company is communication, however this has 3 aspects to it.
The first aspect is enquiring and collecting information.
The second aspect of communication consists of LISTENING and acting upon the demands of the people that took the time out of their day to give you the feedback.
The third step is implementing the changes, upgrades and requests.
For years now there have been voices in the industry regarding awards.
“Oh they are fake” or “they want you to pay” and the list goes on with negative comments.
At Seven Stars Luxury Hospitality and Lifestyle Awards we truly pride ourselves in being a different kind of awards company.
The question was, how do move past the negativity that has been built for years upon years by other companies acting in unethical ways?
The answer was obvious.
- Erase costs
- showcase transparency
- increase credibility
Why on earth should a hotelier PAY to be part of an awards program? How does that make any sense??
The usual answer was “processing fees” , really? up to 1200 dollars of “processing fees per nominee? sounds like a bit more than a processing fee to me.
From the beginning Seven Stars Luxury Hospitality and Lifestyle Awards had no nomination fees, and still doesn’t.
I think that the industry, in terms of Hoteliers as well as the media, is much smarter than what some of these companies might think!
An Award is only as useful as it is credible.
An award is a recognition of efforts and achievement.
Since when do you have to pay to have a chance to be recognized?
If you want to be in the awards business, you should do just that, award!
In the most fair and transparent manner possible placing the players on an equal platform.
The main issue we had to overcome as a company was, how to show everyone that we mean what we say? As with everything else “online” was the answer.
We decided to reconfigure the backend of our system so as to open it up to all nominees as this was, and remains, the only way to really show transparency and accentuate credibility, not just for our organization, but for the achievements of our winners.
Therefore, now, nominees are able to see the very same statistics and information that we have been seeing for the past 3 years.
We give FULL control of the voting to our nominees.
If they send an email out to their clientele to gather votes and support, they will be able to see how many are responding and from which countries.
This provides important information and feedback for Hoteliers.
They are able to see where they currently stand in terms of rank within the competition and are also able to alter the image of their property directly from the personal dashboard.
In a nutshell, this method was a long time coming and we are very proud to be the first to implement it.
An easy way to really compare things is to see the following bullet points and then do the same for other companies and make a simple check list.
- No nomination fee
- No self Nomination Fee
- No fee for Nomination crest
- no fee for usage of winners or nominees crest, no special conditions
- No fee for winners Crest
- No fee to attend the Gala ceremony
- No fee for F&B at the ceremony of any sort
- No fee for the winners plaque if one attends the Gala Ceremony
- Full transparency of votes
- individual user dashboard- no fee
I know I am not the only one with the above opinion, in fact I am well aware of numerous hoteliers that are totally fed up with feeling like they have been taken advantage of. An award should:
- provide exclusivity
- Showcase transparency
- Be credible
- Provide something that “your neighbour” doesn’t have! After all, what is the point if 20 companies in one country have the same award? where is the actual benefit?
The answer normally given to that question is ” ah! its a different category”!
Ok sure, you have the greates boutique property, the greatest luxury boutique property ,the greatest luxury beach boutique property, XYZ country greatest hotel, XYZ country greatest Luxury Hotel, XYZ country greatest Luxury Business Hotel, XYZ Country greatest Luxury City Hotel and so on and so on….its borderline ridiculous.
In 3.5 years combined, by erasing categories and placing a cap on the amount of winners we can have, Seven Stars Luxury Hospitality and Lifestyle Awards has awarded just 666 companies total( sorry about the number but that’s the total so far! :-) ) , across all its sectors,worldwide. This is slightly above what other companies have awarded just for one continent in only one year!
You also have instances just recently where a large online newswire reported that an awards company ,apparently, awarded what is now a refugee shelter in Germany as the top conference venue.
Awards are an extra.
Awards need to be useful.
Awards need to be credible and make sense.
This is why we abolished categories from the very beginning.
We award only all round excellence.
We work in sectors. Therefore you are a winner in your sector be it Hotels/Resorts , Spa etc.
We are not an award that everybody has nor are we an award that everyone can or will have.
I know this, to some, will sound like self promotion and to a certain extent it is, however this article really is for the Hoteliers and industry professionals that are fed up with the nonsense and want what they deserve.
Please feel free to message me directly on LinkedIn if you have any questions or to comment.
End of rant.