Talking Turkey: Lessons Learned from Turkish Hospitality
By Roberta Chinsky Matuson President, Matuson Consulting | October 14, 2012
Those who know me well know that I love to travel. That's why I'm so keen on helping clients in the hospitality industry create memorable experiences for their guests. I'm fortunate in that I've been to more countries than I can remember, but I have never had the pleasure of visiting Turkey until this summer.
Hospitality is one of the cornerstones of Turkish life. The warmth, generosity, and attention to detail leave visitors like myself yearning to return. Here are some lessons direct from Turkey that can be translated easily by hotel providers in any country.
Reputation drives business
Travel decisions are being made today based on the advice of trusted friends (both real and social) and websites like the highly popular Tripadvisor. I can personally attest to the power of brand and reputation when it comes to the spending of tourist dollars, as these both came into play when deciding where to vacation this summer.
I first learned about Turkey when I asked my Facebook friends for recommendations on where to holiday with a family of four over summer break. I received an immediate reply from a friend, who also was a pilot for Continental Airlines, saying that his all-time favorite place was Turkey. How could I not trust the advice of someone who has flown around the world hundreds of times and has visited even more countries than me? He went on to talk about the gracious people of Turkey, and how hospitable everyone is in that country. I was intrigued. A number of friends chimed in with similar posts. A decision was quickly made, and we began the search for hotel accommodations.
Those in the hospitality industry know the importance of having others tout their wonderful experiences at their hotels. Few realize that the experience begins way before the guest ever arrives and continues long after people have departed.