ITB 2024 Special Reporting
Managing Salary Expectations Head On
By Mandy Ferrin
Friday, 29th October 2021

Entry-level management salaries are exactly that: entry-level, however, we are seeing more and more candidates walk through the door expecting to make director money for an entry-level transient room, catering manager, or sales position.

Their disappointment after a few months often leads to position turnover, which hurts the operation in several different ways.

So, how do we stop this from happening in today’s climate?

Be upfront from the get-go

Lying to a candidate as they walk through the door is a sure-fire way to have them walking right back out the door. Even if the organization is jammed up for staff, putting a band-aid on the problem will only cost the operation money and fluidity in the overall performance of the department.

For both of those reasons, as well as starting off on the right foot with the candidate, it is important to be honest right out of the gate. However, while doing so, it is also an appropriate time to develop a career path for the new associate to keep him or her on target as well as giving the candidate real-time feedback on when he or she can expect to see not only more money but also a possible promotion.

One of the best ways to do this? Include a salary range within the job description. While many companies withhold this information in order to negotiate on the short-end, it can cost you a valuable candidate in the long haul.

Award performance over seniority

Promotion based on seniority has taken down far too many operations in this industry. A director has a rock star employee, but there is someone else in the department that has been there for much longer and is deemed to “deserve” the promotion. Well, then, why haven’t they been promoted yet? If you are considering giving a promotion to a newer employee but don’t based simply on the fact somebody else has been there longer, promotions are being handed out for all the wrong reasons.

That model has people looking to put in time rather than work. Simply put, there is no reward for doing more and working harder than the next person. They know they need to put in “X” number of months or years before they can even be considered for a promotion or raise, so what is the driving factor to get them to go above and beyond?

A successful department head will have a career “game plan” in place for their team members. Granted, there will be some employees that are simply happy with the status quo, and are very good at their jobs, but that will more than likely be the exception rather than the rule. By sitting down and having an honest conversation about what these employees want as well as defining how long it will really take them to get there will go a long way in not only retaining that associate, but in also giving them the drive they need to go above and beyond every day they walk through those doors for work.

Struggling to find the right executive-level hospitality managers for your operation? For more information about our services, please click here.

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