Pulse January 2022 - Page 54

RESILIENCY AND THE YEAR AHEAD

BY KIRSTEN CLODFELTER
“ This is an opportunity to rethink our industry and our practices .”
— Emlyn Brown
AT NOVEMBER ’ S ISPA TOWN HALL , 17 months after this virtual series first launched , global spa leaders revisited the pivotal question of how to best support spa teams while adapting to some of the industry ’ s more permanent transformations . As the pandemic ’ s lasting impact on the future of hospitality comes into focus , new questions arise about how to stay agile and effective . Led by moderator and ISPA Chairman Patrick Huey , panelists shared insights , strategies , and practical solutions for remaining resilient — and achieving success — in the year ahead .
Supporting Staff Through Shortages Staffing shortages across the hospitality industry remain one of the biggest challenges facing spa owners and operators . Sam Cooper , the director of wellness development at Canyon Ranch , noted that in some ways
the earlier seasons of the pandemic were easier to manage than the current climate .“ Early on , we were being so protective of our staff and our colleagues and our guests ,” she said ,“ and everyone was so eager to get back to work . Now the floodgates have opened up , and we ’ re struggling — to be honest — with how to support our staff .”
Alleviating the strain that vacancies put on existing staff has required vigilance , as well as some creative thinking . Still , the most valuable support leadership can provide is simple and straightforward : their presence . Michael Tompkins , a partner at Hutchinson Consulting , offered a reminder about the “ quiet power of empathetic listening .”
“ Get together in a talking circle with a core impact group of your managers and employees and let them vent .”
As current staff are asked to carry a heavier load and add additional responsibilities to their plates ( especially as many
“… to support them is really just to be with them , even if it ’ s folding laundry .”
54 PULSE n JANUARY 2022
— Sam Cooper