Main Headline Professional Training

Emotional links draw visitors back to Macao, City of Dreams exec says

Guest lecture at IFTM by City of Dreams' executive Mr. Mike Han

中文摘要 / Summary in Chinese

Tourism and hospitality are what Mr. Mike Han calls “people-oriented industries”, in which customer relations play a significant role. Mr. Han is an executive at the City of Dreams, an integrated resort in Cotai run by Melco Resorts and Entertainment Ltd., where he holds the job title of Director of Rooms – Hotel Operations.

“It’s all about how to accommodate customers’ expectations and build emotional connections with them,” Mr. Han says. “When a tourist visits Macao again and again, it isn’t only because of the food in the resort: something must have connected with the person’s emotions, so that the person finds the place warm and attractive. How can we achieve this? This is customer relations.”

Customer relations was the topic of a guest lecture Mr. Han gave at IFTM on 5 June. The lecture was aimed at trainees taking a series of vocational courses that cover skills useful in the hospitality business, recently introduced by IFTM. The courses are part of a wider scheme by the Macao SAR Government Labour Affairs Bureau to improve the vocational training of Macao workers, so they are better prepared to find jobs while the Covid-19 pandemic lasts.

The courses are designed for unemployed residents of Macao, and for tourism workers that have had their incomes curbed by the Covid-19 pandemic. They include workers in tourism – such as tour guides, taxi drivers and coach drivers – and workers in the meetings and exhibitions industry.

Mr. Han says the slump the Covid-19 pandemic has caused in some industries presents an opportunity for people to reconsider their careers. “The pandemic has forced us to step out from our comfort zone,” he says. “Under normal circumstances, when everyday life goes on smoothly, it’s rare that people will think, ‘Maybe I can try other things.’”

Mr. Han says courses such as those being given by IFTM help the trainees learn about industries other than the ones they worked in before, and let them uncover any latent talent they may have. That, he says, can help people discover vocations that they may turn out to be passionate about.

Focusing on customer relations in hospitality, Mr. Han says the key point is care for the customer. He suggests that prospective employees of hotels answer a couple of simple questions: “Do you want to help others? Do you feel happy when you can make others happy? If so, this is a career that suits you.”

Being a guest lecturer at IFTM was also a learning opportunity for Mr. Han himself. He says the diversity of the backgrounds of the trainees meant positive exchanges.

Mr. Han says open discussion, whether during training or while evaluating internal procedures and development plans, is important in the hospitality business. “Being conservative and narrow-minded makes it hard to improve operations,” he says.

President’s Corner

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