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Generational shift presents a unique set of challenges

UFI IBRAHIM is chief executive officer of the British Hospitality Association

Hotel hopes for Perth City Hall

Perth City Hall in Scotland may be spared from demolition and redevel- oped as a boutique hotel aſter local councillors were urged to perform a volte-face and back new plans. Tey had previously voted to tear


ne of the major challenges fac- ing hospitality businesses in the UK (and across the world), is that today’s young people are

different from yesterday’s young people. Teir values, goals and world views are

different from previous generations and their expectations are not like ours. When you consider that people are at the

heart of hospitality and tourism, it becomes evident that this has major implications for the sector’s recruitment. In this indus- try, more than any other, getting the right employees in the right position is abso- lutely crucial because in hospitality, success is driven by the people who represent and run businesses on a day to day basis. What’s more, the very nature of this

industry dictates that generally it is young people at the frontline of any hospitality business. Anyone responsible for hiring hospitality employees will be more than familiar with this fact. In fact, employers attending any of the BHA’s Big Hospitality Conversations across the UK over the past year will be fully aware of the changing needs of young people seeking work today. “Since the Big Conversation’s conception

almost two years ago, we’ve noticed a real shiſt in how the young people approach the events,” says the director of Big Hospitality Conversation James Latham. “It seems to me that the old order is shiſt-

ing and new rules are coming into play in the world of work in the hospitality sector. “Now it’s as much about employers

impressing them as visa versa and in some cases young people are educating employ- ers about tech trends and innovations.” Meanwhile, Graeme Codrington, a key-

note speaker at the Hospitality & Tourism Summit 2014 on 5 June, takes a more radical view. He believes that the future of hospital- ity and its success in attracting, recruiting and retaining bright, reliable young employ- ees rests on two crucial points: • understanding why has this change in

young people has happened and... • ...if we accept the view that the hospi-

tality workforce is in flux, how should we respond to this evolution?


down the B-listed (Scotland’s equiva- lent to Grade II listing) building, but Perth Council’s development manage- ment committee has recommendsed the full council approves the project. Developer, the Seventy Group,

has produced plans for a 32-bed- room five-star hotel in the Edwardian building – with designs from Simpson & Brown Architects – and claims to have had interest from international hotel chains and management companies. Te hotel would also include a bar and a

restaurant open to the public, plus banquet- ing facilities for 100 guests. The hall was closed nearly nine years ago, when the city’s new concert hall opened, and was due to be pulled down to create a new city square. Tis

Simpson & Brown Architects has been appointed to design

proposal was fiercely-opposed by local resi- dents and Historic Scotland blocked a move from the council to tear down the hall in 2012. Te proposals will now go to a full council

vote, where details such as the building’s lease will also be discussed. Development quality officer Nick Brian recommended approval in his report, subject to preservation conditions. Details:

‘Mirror effect’ offers Shard guests an unexpected vista

Guests at the newly-opened Shangri-La Hotel in London’s Te Shard are being warned to close the blinds at night as the glass struc- ture’s panels make it sometimes possible to see into other rooms. Some of the glass sur- rounding the 1,016ſt (310m) building acts as

an inadvertent mirror when lights are on, so the advice is being issued to maintain guests’ privacy. Te hotel, which opened last week, features London’s highest champagne and cocktail bar, and will soon offer a penthouse suite. Details:

Industry enjoys record expansion: Study

Te UK hotel industry defied the reces- sion to record its largest ever expansion in the decade to the end of 2013, with total investment for the period topping £13bn, according to a new report. Te industry added 106,380 new rooms

over the 10-year period, while shedding 40,000 to record a net gain of around 66,000 rooms. And the growth looks set to continue, with 9,300 more rooms planned for 2014 and 2015 in London and over 14,700 rooms elsewhere in the UK. Hospitality Digest 2014, a new 190-page

publication by the Institute of Hospitality, used figures provided by construction consultants Gleeds to produce an overview of key facts and figures outlining the UK hospital- ity industry and the trends underlying its growth. “In a single publication it contains all the key

factual information on the growth of the industry’s key sectors – tourism, hotels and food service, as well as articles and information on employment

Read Leisure Opportunities online: Peter Ducker hopes to chart the growth of key sectors

and education in the industry,” says Peter Ducker, chief executive of the Institute of Hospitality. “We believe it complements the information

that is available in our library and builds the Institute’s reputation as an up-to-date source of knowledge on the hospitality industry,” Ducker concluded. Details:

Twitter: @leisureopps © CYBERTREK 2014

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