Hospitality 2022
Commercial Strategy

Facing Hospitality & Travel’s Greatest Challenges, Together

By , Director, Industry Consulting

A changed industry requires a changed commercial organization. Are you ready for 2022?

You may be ready for change, but is your organization? Multiple challenges have emerged as top priorities for the hospitality & travel industry, and new trends and market conditions are transforming the outlook for 2022 and beyond.

As the director of IDeaS’ world-class consulting team, I’ve had the privilege to meet with many clients and industry leaders over the past year. As I consider all the thoughtful conversations we’ve had, and look ahead to what 2022 has in store for us, there are two challenges that strike me as being the most critical. First, retaining and finding the right people and reshaping roles for our future, and second, enabling the proactive and agile approach needed to face the rapid magnitude of change.

Focus on People First

Retaining and finding the right talent to lead performance at an organization is not as simple as it may sound. The industry landscape has changed, and not everyone has the right capabilities to drive growth within the current circumstances. Roles and responsibilities for these individuals are shifting and with that, new commercial structures are needed to support and help navigate the uncertainty and change impacting everyone.

We have seen staffing shortages across organizations, and with that, individuals need to do more with less, leveraging other team members’ support, relearning certain tasks as well as adopting new or optimizing the use of existing technology. Updated processes and a new approach are needed to bring efficiency and drive results. But this change has come so fast that there has been limited time to evaluate what new practices are needed or what knowledge and training will help—not to mention finding ways to help individuals who are resistant to change.

Hospitality & travel is a people-first industry. Take care of your people, on both sides of the front desk, and create an environment to foster change readiness and ongoing talent development.

Take a Proactive, Agile Approach

The rapid, revolutionary changes we’ve seen have also impacted consumer behaviors in ways that we could never have imagined. Social distancing, travel restrictions and lockdowns, and the shift to remote work has changed the way we do business, and on the other side of this, life, values, and greater appreciation for time with family and friends have become a higher priority for many of us.

We serve guests who want to enjoy their experiences more, and are willing to pay for it, but also their expectations are shifting. And we need to adjust to meet these new expectations. Who your guests are and why they are traveling may not be the same, which is a great opportunity to offer a different experience, but first we need to listen and truly understand.

Prepare for guest expectations to continue to evolve, and ensure your organization is well-aligned around common goals to remain agile and exceed those expectations.

Prepare for More Change & Uncertainty

With IDeaS Consulting, I am proud to lead a dream team that has evolved to better meet the needs of our clients in a fast-changing world. Leading hospitality & travel businesses have embraced the virtues of automation and data-driven decision-making like never before, but it takes more than implementing the best software to make it happen.

Commercial transformation is truly possible when organizations have formally aligned their people, processes and technology. Our mission is to help our clients prepare for that transformation, adapt to new environments and unlock new opportunities for growth.

As someone who has been in the hospitality & travel industry for a long time, there is one thing I am certain of and that’s this industry—no matter the situation—always rises to meet and beat the challenges we’re presented with. You are a resilient bunch, and I am honored to work with and for you as we face these challenges, together.

In closing, I wish you all a happy holidays and a healthy new year. Thank you.

Director, Industry Consulting

Working intimately with hospitality organizations all over the world, Digna boasts a strong, diverse background in hotel operations, revenue management, consulting and strategic pricing. Prior to joining the IDeaS global team in 2011, Digna spent 11 years in leadership roles at InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG). Her roles with IHG include serving as the regional head of revenue management for Japan, Korea, the Middle East & Africa, as well as the global pricing implementation & business integration manager.

Holding deep expertise in the deployment and structuring of pricing and revenue management processes, Digna helps clients build sustainable revenue management cultures in multi-cultural and diverse organizational environments. Digna holds an MBA in Hospitality Management IMHI, a joint program of Cornell University and ESSEC. She currently lives in sunny California with her husband.

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