Have you ever seen a host running around the casino floor on a Saturday evening? He’s heading to the pit to help break the news that this roulette player isn’t getting a comp for the buffet tonight. He took a call from one of his players as he was leaving the tables, and now he’s running for the hotel desk to greet a guest who’s just checking in. He grabs the mic on the way and makes a jackpot announcement, since a slot attendant held out a note to him as he cruised by. His radio crackles, and he’s off to the steakhouse to push back a reservation before he heads to the entertainment stage to do a promotional announcement.
Can you see him? Walking as quickly as possible without actually running, while dodging guests, trash cans, structural features, and cocktail servers. He’s hoping to make it to his destination in one piece, knowing that it’s just the next stop in what’s going to be a long night. All too often voice mails go unchecked, players’ questions go unanswered, reservations are un-cancelled, comps are left unwritten, and hosts are unfulfilled. It’s sad to think that this happens in one of the most rewarding jobs a people person can find.
Here’s how you can prevent all the “uns” from happening. Don’t ask the host team to do things that run counter to their main objective. They are employed to do one thing: get your best players to spend as much of their gaming wallet with your property as possible. If a task isn’t one that’s directly related to accomplishing that objective, it’s not a task a host should be doing.
Here are 6 Tasks that a Host should not be doing!
- Not doing overhead announcements. For anything. Really. This is an easy responsibility to leave with your players club and/or promotions team. Consider hiring a personality to record “standard” announcements and set them to run at particular times so your staff can concentrate on taking care of your players.
- Not handling Registration. For anything. Really. No tournaments, no hotel check-ins, no VIP event tables, period. Hosts should be walking through the event talking with people, not stuck in one place doing administrative tasks unrelated to driving visitation.
- Not handling all operational complaints. Obviously, part of a host’s job is to smooth the ruffled feathers of an angry high-roller. It’s not necessarily the host’s job, however, to come to the steakhouse every time a guest says his meal hasn’t met his expectations. It is of vital importance that F&B and PD come to an understanding about which players (and which situations) should be handled by a host and when the room’s staff should be trained and empowered handle things themselves.
- Not running promotions. I know, I know. The hosts are charismatic and the crowd loves them and blah, blah, blah. But the host should be working that crowd and finally meeting that elusive new player he’s missed the last 3 visits, not stuck at the Promotions Desk swiping player cards or drawing the winner’s name.
- Not poring over reports to figure out who to call. Your host team will be more effective if they don’t have to do the database mining themselves. Give them specific information, on a daily basis, that pinpoints which guests to call, which reservations to make, and which activities to complete.
- Not making calls to players whose ADT is never likely to reach a level for hosting. You know which players I mean, right? The squeaky wheels who end up on a host’s voicemail because they couldn’t get a comp last time they were there and a coffee shop server suggested the host could help them. The guest who hasn’t been to your property in more than a year and wonders why he doesn’t have coupons this month. These are not the players your host team should be spending their valuable time on. Again, front-line employees, including those in the call center, need to be trained and empowered to handle service recovery themselves. so they only escalate to the host-on-duty for the exceptional players.
Imagine if you had 600 players coded to you, and your number one objective was to get your best players to spend as much of their gaming wallet with your property as possible. How would you want to spend your time? Hopefully your answer was something like: Focusing on those players, not taking care of administration and minor service recovery. So work with your Player Development and Operations teams to re-assign these six responsibilities to other front-line employees. Then challenge your hosts to exceed their goals with all their new time and tools!