I love this Forbes story about Geoff Ballotti, CEO of Wyndham Hotels. First, it emphasises something that is at the core of successful operations management – aligning the organisational culture with the strategic goals of the firm – and the importance of leadership in achieving this. Second, it’s about a hotel company.
Every operation has to have a system for handling complaints. Before Ballotti’s appointment Wyndham’s system was that any complaints sent to corporate HQ were sent to the local property for them to handle. There are a number of flaws in this approach, not least of which is that each property might handle such issues differently, and there is little or no control over how effective the response has been.
Now any complaint letter received at corporate HQ is dealt with there, and often directly by Ballotti himself. He says “customers feel heard, recognized, and know that they’re on their way to a successful resolution of the issue”.