Interview with Cai Chuqiang ¡ª Task Force General Manager of Sheraton Sanya Resort
Perhaps it should make an explanation first. The guest to this issue of Foreigner¡¯s Teahouse Mr. Chris tsoi is actually a Hong Kong citizen. He was born in Hong Kong and accepted British education from childhood. Later he went to Florida State University in USA, studied hotel management and returned to Hong Kong in 1985 after graduation. He had kept working in Hong Kong hotel industry for 12 years and was sent to work in a foreign country in 1997, becoming the first senior hotel management professional sent to other countries form Hong Kong since the return of Hong Kong to China¡¯s sovereignty. In the following 12 years. Mr. Tsoi has worked in well-known international brand hotel in management position and been to Vietnam, Beijing and Shanghai. From October of this year, Mr. Tsoi joined Sheraton Sanya Resort as the task force general manager. He is also one of a few Chinese managers in international brand hotels in Sanya. For Mr. Tsoi Himself, this is a new stride and a challenge: for the entire Sanya hotel industry, this is also a leaping-over development. Through Mr. Tsoi and Sheraton Sanya Resort, we can see the perfect integration of Chinese and western cultures as well as the organic combination of Chinese-style management and western-style management in the developing Sanya hotel and resort industry. In the course of constructing Hainan International Tourism Island, they play an important role and undertake a significant historic task.
As the first resort Starwood Hotel & Resort Worldwide Inc. in China, Sheraton Sanya Resort was opened in Yalong Bay National Resort District on January 28. 2003. In the same year, the resort was awarded a five-star hotel, and became the office resort for the 53rd, 54th, and 55th Miss World Final consecutively.
In the past five years, Sheraton Sanya Resort has recorded soaring achievements without low seasons and achieved given in both leisure and Mice marker. The resort participated into and organized a series of large-scale activities including the grand opening ceremony of Nanshan 108-meter Kwan-yin, the launching ceremony of Sanya City name Card-English Name Card, and the First Yalong Bay Beach Jazz Festival, and has become an important window through which Sanya is shot by and promoted to many domestically and internationally well-known medias like British BBC TV Station, South Korea TV drama producers, CCTV and so on. During the period from April 8 to 13 when Bo¡¯ao Forum For Asia was held, the Chinese President Hu Jintao Stayed in Sheraton Sanya Resort and held state-level reception to welcome the king of the kingdom of Tonga, president of president of Tanzania, and president of Chile. This is the first time that the Chinese government held state-level reception out of capital Beijing, and also a milestone in the leaping-over development of Sanya hotel industry.
Mentioning this, the writer could not but ask by what Sheraton Sanya Resort can develop so smoothly and rapidly? What secret weapons does Sheraton Sanya Resort have for its success? Let us know about the typical business story of co-surpassing of a brand and oneself through the hotel the acting general manager Mr. Tsoi.
About Himself: Surpassing is a sort of growth as well pleasure
Hong Kong people are gentlemen like and romantic, so is Mr. Tsoi as a typical representative. Our talk started with the wedding of Yang Wei and Yang Yun. I originally planned to introduce the objects of the three columns about people in this issue of Fun Travel, not expecting Mr. Tsoi was very interested in the minutes. I apologized for the off-subject talk but he said, "No! No! That is very interesting and I am more interested! "Humorous! Funny! Romantic and gentleman like are my first impression on Mr. Tsoi.
The following dialogue was very relaxed. We communicated with each other in Chinese all along, which made my interview smoother. Our topic was developed from then. Mr. Tsoi, "Foreign managers have rich hotel management experience and they adapt themselves well to the development of China. Some have lived in China for many years, can speak a lot of Chinese, and have good knowledge of the Chinese culture. What the difference between me and them is I am more Chinese, and we need to learn from each other and to complement each other. Starwood Hotel & Resort Worldwide Inc. now has possessed quite a few Chinese managers, some of whom are assigned to other countries far away. I also hope in Sanya, the international tourism and resort paradise we can see more and more Chinese managers.
From the interview, we know that before taking the position of task force general manager of Sheraton Sanya Resort. Mr. Tsoi had visited to the resort twice. Despite that he did not live in the resort for experience, with the sharp view of a hotel manager, he was deeply impressed on the environment and the restaurant of the resort. He got a feeling that "This is truly a resort!"
This time he came to take a position with important responsibilities. Seeing from the point of view of a manager and an operator, his feeling is naturally different. His eyes are more on the development of the resort. Although he is now still the task force general manager, no matter how long he will take the position, as Mr. Tsoi said, he cherishes and likes the challenge. Just as he was selected as a representative to step out of the boundary of China to participate into the pre-opening of a hotel in Vietnam, and he went to Beijing to operate a business hotel later, this time operating such a resort as Sheraton with a fully new resort notion, he said, is also a sort of surpassing. He likes surpassing, he said, as surpassing represents a sort of growth as well as pleasure.
About Brand: Never Can Be the Best and There Exists Space to Exceed Forever
About the secret weapon of Sheraton, my question was direct. However, Mr. Tsoi was humorous by saying. "Sheraton is the best hotel in Sanya? Does and there the best? No! For a brand, there is no the best and there exists the space to exceed improve forever." Then he earnestly added, "A good brand does not win by only one strong point. Take our resort as an example. Besides the advantageous geographical position and design layout, we must have good hardware and services, namely the software, to match with it. Form the view of a manager, we must make the associates, guests, property owner, and the management company all satisfied. Put stress on every detail and start from subtle services, then we can achieve continuous surpassing on the brand.
It is not hard to understand to make the owner, the management company and the guests satisfied. But Mr. Tsoi¡¯s inclusion of the satisfaction of the working personnel into their management foals is really hard to understand! Mr. Tsoi laughed and said, "This is the key. To service industry, details determine the success, while the associates are the one to deliver services. In Sheraton, we don¡¯t call our employees the staff but stars. We have over 800 stars in our resort/ only when our stars are satisfied, our guests can be satisfied, and then our business will be satisfying. If our business is satisfying, our owner and the management company will be naturally satisfied. "It seems that the talks about satisfying the associates in Sheraton are not only a prate. They are truly following the simple but realistic nation in their operation so as to achieve their goal of surpassing.
Besides, the equalitarianism Sheraton takes in their distribution channels is worth taking as a reference. 80% of their 511 rooms as sold to leisure customers. The guests are obtained through the share of its headquarter, internet booking, travel agencies, direct walk-in global sales office and so on. The channels are abundant but every even. This is not a coincidence but the means and technique Sheraton adopts in their sales. By this means their market is expanded into many fields and the monopolizing restrain is avoided as a result. While protecting the price system, it can also enhance the brand value.
At last, I asked a question which every reader may be interested in, "The sales people always worry about two matters. One is to worry about low sales volume, and the other is just the opposite, worry about sales volume. Then does Sheraton fall into the second category most of times? Under such circumstances, how Sheraton face the guests who like to live in your resort?" Mr. Tsoi replied, "At first we definitely need to consult with the guests to see whether there is still some space to make adjustment in respect of travel; schedules and room types. If no, then we will recommend the guest to live in the other two run by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc. in Hainan province, or even recommend them to other resorts in the area of Ylong Bay. The satisfaction of the guests is the most and the foremost. Even if the resort can not meet the demand of some guests in a particular period, as long as our service notion is not charged, the guest will be the guest of Sheraton forever."