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Client Advice

The Consequence of "New Normal": New Mindset, New Approach

By Antal International

…. and critically questioning common recruiting practise


For some time, my opinion was, that "No Covid", lockdowns and attempts to eliminate the SARS-Cov2 virus are the right strategy and one day, this misery is over. I changed my mind: It won´t. We have to learn how to live with it. Fully agree, this isn´t the discussion that gets you excited as we all have enough of it.

I like to give it a different twist. Much has been said as well, how the new normal in tourism, travel and hospitality might look like and what there is to do. We increasingly understand people are traumatized and try to avoid crowds, seek more remote places for recreation, are more concerned about hygiene protocols. But while most hospitality companies have rolled out new campaigns emphasizing increased hygiene enforcement (all telling the same story), very little is discussed about the need to reinvent products, services and processes. The process of boarding aeroplanes occasionally still involves cramped busses. A few days ago, I was on a fully booked domestic flight, constantly hearing the announcement: "Mind your distance." Give me a break, Captain. Also in hospitality, a lot of effort has gone into hygiene, but the way food and drinks are offered, prepared and served hasn´t changed much. Entertainment and face-to-face meetings go with a conflict if happening at all. 

We all do this for restarting business and the economy, but not to make passengers, visitors and guests feel more comfortable.

Therefore, there might be a great opportunity in gaining a competitive edge in reinventing processes and offerings in travel and hospitality with the objective not only to feel safe but to feel also really comfortable and enjoyable. To get there, the first step might be that the phrase "we have always done it this way" is no longer allowed. That´s easier said than done.

What do we always hear? It all starts with the right people. What are the most overused phrase and empty lip service? It all starts with the right people.

I would rather say, to move towards increased quality, it is overdue to rethink, question and improve recruiting and selection practice.

Controllers have advocated introducing ATS in companies to automize recruiting and save money. Fresh graduates in HR make assumptions on competencies based on box-ticking exercises. To a great extent, fierce competition has made external recruiting services a purely transaction-based business of little value beyond brokering CVs. Has that made spotting real talent better? I very much doubt that. More often than less, today´s recruiting practice has mutated to become a "buzz word casino".

Casinos and lotteries are not known a safe bet, therefore mainstream recruiting practice isn´t suitable to find and retain the talent needed to reinvent processes, generate a new approach, think outside the box. You need human professionals involved, who not only know the relevant processes on hand inside out but also know the trends of the industry, who can look behind the requested buzzword competencies in a CV and who can go beyond common -mostly foreseeable - interview techniques to spot real talent needed for the next level of quality in hospitality, travel and everywhere else where people serve people.


This article was written by Richard Adam

Richard Adam is a Experienced C level executive, NED Board Member, Strategist, Intl. Hospitality Developer (Destination, Resort, Real Estate), Game Changer and member of the World Tourism Forum Institute