Name: Patsy Bock
Company Name: Director of Sales & Marketing, Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina
How have you changed your business in response to COVID-19?
The safety of our associates, our guests and our vendors is our top priority. We have trained for and implemented rigorous safety protocols as we are a Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC) STAR accredited facility. To receive this accreditation, we implemented the industry’s highest standards for cleaning, disinfection and infectious disease prevention to minimize risks associated with infectious agents like COVID-19. We consider our associates all cleaning professionals, not just our housekeeping team. We have left no stone unturned as we also incorporated Marriott’s Commitment to Clean high standards. We introduced a special electrostatic sprayer that is used in our public space, restaurants and pools to kill any type of virus. In addition, there is only one entrance for our associates and vendors and every person is required to have their temperature checked and answer a serious of health-related questions. Automatic door openers throughout the back of the house have been installed and, of course, hand sanitizing stations and signage throughout the entire property. We also have management presence in all public areas to ensure each guest is wearing a face covering and practicing physical distancing.
Times are very difficult right now, so we’ve been focusing on service. Everyone needs a little TLC right now. We have many guests from our drive market and staycationers who are visiting us for just a few days instead of jumping on a plane for Hawaii or traveling abroad. We are giving exceptional service to everyone to ensure our guests feel like they’ve been able to escape and be pampered.
What keeps you hopeful?
What gives me hope is that our industry is filled with such creative, resourceful, out-of-the-box thinkers. We know we can re-invent ourselves whether it be outdoor events or virtual hybrid events. Everyone is working together to figure out how to productively move through this devastating time in our industry.
What is your advice to other businesses?
Be nice! Be service oriented. Be genuinely caring. There is so much anxiety in our world right now. People need a kind word, a thank you and a smile. Even if they can’t see it behind your mask, they’ll see your smile through your eyes. Now is the time to give the most caring service you can.
What is the one thing you are looking forward to doing when things return to normal-ish?
To be able to hug or shake hands while looking at our customers and associates in the eye with a big smile. To welcome my colleagues back to work. Right now, we are all working so hard with very little return, so to realize the fruits from all our hard work would be a welcome relief.