Saturday, December 20, 2008

Every Person a Potential Guest

The next time you plan to check-in at a 5-star hotel in Malaysia, try this: Dress in your sub-casual worst (preferably a shirt with two unintentional holes glaring out), uncomb your hair, lose the jewelry, hide your baggage, put on the fresh-off-the-boat look and try to walk like Gandhi.

If you're lucky, you'll arrive at the lobby at around the same time as some dude who looks like a guest of the White House.

Now comes the fun part: Observe their treatment of you, the way they look (or don't), their enthusiasm, etc. Chances are, they'll speak to you as if you were an applicant for the janitor's position and/or they'll be smooching up the other guy whislt making it clear they'll need some time before they get to you - up to the point where you tell them you have a room reservation AND THAT you'd appreciate some service please.

Merely human psychology? To judge based on appearances? Well, in Singapore - at least at the Meritus Mandarin - I'm told everyone gets the same high-quality package of eye-contact, smiles and can-I-help-you?s'.

That hotel, at least, has allowed the perception issues to be dealt with by the security folks, not the people serving the guests.

No comments: