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Nine Service Qualities that Define Luxury Hospitality

At Luxury Hospitality we recognise the qualities that make exceptional service possible. We believe that having these SERVICE QUALITIES is what sets crew members apart and inspires them to deliver the ultimate experience for owners and charter guests. During all our workshops, these vital qualities are discussed in detail and they form the basis of how students are evaluated. 

Each crew member brings with them a certain level of skill and experience, and we know that each and every one is motivated to be the best that they can be.

By focusing on these nine Service Qualities, our students become more aware and more attuned to their significance in practice, developing their confidence and ability to excel.


Read our interview: Peter Vogel, Founder of Luxury Hospitality  

Here the team at LH describes what each Service Quality means to them:

LH headshots SaraMOTIVATION

Sara Ballinger - Leadership Specialist

They say, “Do a job you love, and you will never work a day in your life”. Those of us in that position know this is true, although there will always be days when we have to work a little harder!

Motivation is drive fuelled by purpose, and purpose is driven by our values and our passions. When we connect with our passion and engage our strengths and talents, motivation comes easily. We are in the zone, in our element and in flow. Problems are reframed as challenges to learn from; we express ourselves authentically and we communicate better.

Whether you are a leader, manager or team member, your motivation to do the best possible job for others and to feel pride in your accomplishments, is the difference between excelling in your role and simply doing the basics until something better comes along.

You can’t teach someone to be motivated, but you can help them to find their inner purpose. If you are struggling to sustain your motivation it may be time to explore what really makes you happy (or leave).

COMMUNICATIONLH headshots Martin

Martin Mainey - Head of Leadership and Coaching

Communication is the key to delivering exceptional guest service, building rapport and developing high performing teams. Effective communication requires high levels of self-awareness about how and what you are communicating verbally and non-verbally through your body language - the tone of your voice and particularly what your eyes are saying. This is critical for powerful guest interaction, team leadership and for being a star team player.

Be very clear what it is you want someone to know, understand and feel - this will set the paradigm for your communication and the behaviour you choose to follow. The capacity to listen with empathy is also key. This will allow you to better understand and anticipate the needs of guests as well as those who you lead or support. 

Read our interview: Inspiring Leadership with Martin Mainey

LH headshots JuliaTEAMWORK

Julia Rogers - Head of Insight

There are many definitions of the word TEAM but the one that stands out the most to me is: Together Everyone Achieves More. When a team comes together, with the same shared goal, great things happen. Great teamwork increases your confidence and allows you to focus more fully on the guest experience.

When everyone is playing to their strengths and your team is working in flow, you create a sense of ease and professionalism that takes your service to the next level. Even without knowing why, your guests will feel this and appreciate the quality of the service they receive.

Read our interview: Building Strong Teams with Julia Rogers

LH headshots LynneDECISIVENESS

Lynne Edwards - Insight specialist

On a busy boat, the ability to make decisions quickly and effectively is an important quality, especially when managing a team.

Decisiveness is a leadership quality requiring creativity, reasoning, intuition and emotional intelligence. As well as excellent technical knowledge, service leaders must also have strong people management skills to make good decisions under pressure.

When you’re able to make decisions with confidence, your guests will be able to fully relax knowing everything is under control and in the safe hands of a true professional.

Read our interview with Lynne: Reflecting on an Industry State of Mind 

 FLEXIBILITY LH headshots Rob

Rob Rademaker - Specialist Trainer (Bar, Mixology, Barista and Specialist Tea)

Flexibility gives us the capacity to adjust to short-term changes quickly and calmly, so that we can deal with unexpected challenges or tasks effectively.

You cannot always predict when changes are going to happen, especially when dealing with highly demanding guests, so being prepared for the unexpected really pays off. If you remain flexible and open minded, you’ll find it easier to understand and manage change.

A shift in routine might also be an opportunity for you to learn new skills, or to work with different colleagues or guests. A strong and stable team is more likely to be able to cope with change, safe in the knowledge that whatever arises you can rely on each other for support.

Read our interview: Cocktails & Beverages with Rob Rademaker

LH headshots GeorgieFRIENDLINESS

Georgie Mainey - Academy Manager

What’s not to enjoy about being in a friendly team? Friendliness is vitally important to encourage colleagues to share knowledge which increases team spirit and morale. In a friendly working environment your mental health is also more robust and your stress levels are reduced, which has a positive impact on the quality of service you are able to deliver. 

A friendly attitude is just as important towards guests, putting them at ease and making them feel welcome. Friendliness is a sign that you care about your guests and this is something they will remember long after the event. So go on, be friendly, be kind, and add some warmth to the whole experience! 

LH headshots Renata

Renata Calla - Head of Interior Training

At LH we like to like to add a bit of fun to our training with the odd joke. Humour can be highly effective when you want to get a message across, and we know that humour helps people to learn and remember things more easily.

A team which shares a sense of humour is also a happy team, and this creates a more relaxed environment for everyone on board. Guests too may appreciate a little humour in your interactions, as this creates a shared moment and a human connection which puts a smile on everyone’s face.

If you have time for humour it also suggests that you are confident and comfortable in your role which in turn helps to build trust - the foundation of all good relationships.

Read our interview: Superyacht Service with Renata Balla 

LH headshots Svenja

Svenja Halligan - Specialist Trainer

Sincerity is extremely important in your dealings with team members and it forms the basis of all good working relationships. Express your views honestly and discuss any issues openly to avoid misunderstandings. Sincerity is also key for finding solutions as a team, creating a sense of unity which improves performance and happiness.

It’s also important to be sincere with your guests. We can all sense when someone truly cares and has our best interests at heart, and we can all spot a fake! If you’re sincere in the way you serve your guests, they will feel it too and will appreciate your effort.

Read our interview: Chief Stew and Trainer Svenja Halligan


Erik Smit - Operations Manager

As part of the service philosophy at LH we see responsibility as having the ability to respond. To be able to do this, you need to know the where, when, how and why of whatever it is that you are accountable for. Once this is understood and agreed, you can assume your responsibility with confidence and a sense of pride.

Responsibility is what bonds the other eight Service Qualities together. Once you feel a true sense of responsibility for the performance of your team, you will inspire the same feeling in others.

Guests will only experience exceptional service when they are confident that you are taking full responsibility for their wellbeing and, to demonstrate this, you will naturally be using some, or all, of the other eight qualities that underpin exceptional service.

Read our interview: Standout Service with Erik Smit


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