This year’s theme at The Superyacht Forum (12 – 14 November) will look at ‘The Perfect Customer Journey’ and owner experience, a topic that resonates well with new partner, Luxury Hospitality.

“We were very thrilled to find out the theme for this year” starts Daan Akse, head of growth for Luxury Hospitality. “Essentially, the customer journey is what we are about”.

As a new partner at The Superyacht Forum (TSF), Luxury Hospitality will explore effective methodologies and approaches to delivering the best customer experience, addressing the industry on its leadership culture.

“Essentially, an owner is looking for what is paramount to the next-best hospitality experience, which, like it or not, is very much an emotional game,” explains Akse. “If someone’s heart is not in it, the specific feeling that an owner is looking for when they come on board won’t be there. It sounds so simple, but it’s so important that we find this to be the essence of the industry”.

Anthropology has been a growing topic within the market in recent years. Principal trainer for Luxury Hospitality, Peter Vogel, has spent the last 10 years working with several owners. He explains one of the fundamental problems he has seen in the market is the lack of personnel training. “I was always so mesmerised by the time lost from doing refits and build stages, which will obviously create a beautifully looking yacht, but nothing, or at least a minimum amount of time was spent on developing the humans on board” he observes.

“This is a big focus for us, we have figured out that it’s the leadership culture on board that makes people leave the industry. It’s not one individual, it’s the culture and minimum communication. If there’s no willingness to develop the people, then they are going to go somewhere else and find it.”  

Priding themselves in working with crew, management and owners to deliver the best hospitality, Vogel adds “[Developing] own strengths, peers’ strengths and each other’s challenges, is the foundation of any kind of communication between owners and the crew. It is the key to ensuring that you have a crew remaining with a client and that the staff turnover drops. Turnover is the biggest problem and a significant reason why owners leave yachting.”

In their holistic approach to yachting HR, Luxury Hospitality have developed state-of-the-art management tool, ‘Mind’, an app launching at TSF that gives insight into their crew’s motivation levels (Find out more here). “The good thing about our app is that you can actually measure why crew are underperforming,” says Akse.

“There are more companies doing (leadership) training and development, but what really distinguishes us is the use of artificial intelligence to measure how crew members are feeling as well as providing clients with team composition assessments and performance management frameworks. We’re unique in providing the full range of knowledge and tools required for our customers to deliver the world’s finest hospitality to their owners and guests.”

The Superyacht Forum, held this November, has a programme dedicated to the most pressing crew and ownership issues, and brings together the breadth of the market; a key reason for Luxury Hospitality joining as a partner.  “This is a feature of TSF that isn’t available anywhere else in the industry” says Vogel. “I think that [TSF’s] dynamic approach is something that a boat show cannot give you. That is what is appealing, and we are looking forward to the sharing of our approach and [creating] a long-term relationship”

Ahead of TSF, Luxury Hospitality will be at The Monaco Yacht show conducting crew workshops on a range of different topics, ranging from housekeeping all the way to leadership.  

The Superyacht Forum will take place from 12 – 14 November in Amsterdam. Click here to register and here to view the programme outline.

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Luxury Hospitality Management


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