EXCELLENCE IS… Series Part 2-2

by Egi Gaisie

Productivity (hospitality education and training in focus)

A reflection: Many of us attending the workshop came from hospitality operations background. We were more familiar with training than education. It was necessary, therefore, for us to be made aware of the distinction between education and training.

That done, and equipped to become a hospitality educator, I stepped into the classroom with much confidence. Yet I was not the best-loved by my students; whether they were beginners or students completing their respective courses and looking forward to explore the world of work!

Reflecting back, I may have pushed them too hard, wanting them to be among the best!

Hospitality training and productivity

Today, hospitality training is largely still what it was since I was introduced to it several years ago; preparing employees to perform specific job –related set of skills/competencies. Trainees practice skills during training and apply them on the job immediately afterwards. Trainees are able to bring out real job challenges which are tackled during training sessions. Most trainees see the relevance of their training but for one reason or other, quite a significant number seem to respond to training as though it’s a waste of their time.

Our large international management-operated hotels are however now utilizing online training practices to increase employee productivity.

Generally, hospitality businesses are striving to improve employee performance but very few consider employee productivity. These concepts may be related, but they’re not the same thing.

As an investment, training enhances productivity which can add to an organization’s profit margin.

See how training boosts employee productivity!

  • Inspires new employees: In last weeks’ feature I recounted the type of training I was taken through upon getting a summer job at a fast food restaurant. How organizations on-board employees set the tone for their long-term productivity. Appropriate training of new employees get them off on the right foot by giving them a good sense of the business and job expectations, resulting in high productivity.
  • Revitalizes old skills: Ongoing employee training helps cultivate talents from within organizations. By retraining employees on current skills, small and basic mistakes are prevented which enhances productivity.
  • Gives employees new skills: By teaching employees new skills, they will most likely demonstrate higher levels of job satisfaction, feel appreciated, and develop a new sense of a purpose which also leads to increase in productivity.
  • Raises confidence levels: Learning and maintaining skills can boost employees’ confidence. By developing greater confidence, employees enjoy a greater sense of value and enthusiasm on the job. This often translates into increased productivity.

Hospitality education and productivity

Education facilitates learning of new information, behaviors or skills/competencies which contributes to ones total life growth. In education, the student generally is not learning skills /competencies that are specific to a job function and in almost all cases the student will not immediately apply classroom information on the job.

Aside education having broader objectives than training it takes place in a non-threatening environment where students are expected to feel free to interpret and apply their new knowledge.

In preparing me for the classroom I got an understanding that in the educational process a teacher doesn’t normally give answers to students, but rather ‘helps them to develop logical minds so that they can see relationships among facts and events and eventually impact events’.

The Hospitality Educator and productivity

Being a productive educator may sound like an impossible goal particularly in these days when our educators are up to their ears in work that must be accomplished each day. Any tools that can help manage time and get tasks done in a timely manner are hugely beneficial.

Achieving high levels of classroom productivity means making sure students are interested and invested in tasks that develop higher-order thinking and problem-solving abilities. Not only are they involved in constructive pursuits and being given mindful assessments, they are learning independence and accountability!

I’m reminded that they teach people, not subjects!

Students and productivity

Being productive is a vital aspect of a student’s being. With some of us, our college lives involved holding down jobs, attending classes, completing assignments and making time for social life. It was overwhelming!  For most students balancing school and life is still a challenge.

However, this is the prime time for students to learn to be productive; attending lectures, getting assignments done on time and still having room for other activities. Particularly for the big dreamers with concrete goals, overcoming this challenge will make a big difference in their future.

There’s a lot required from all of us (trainers, educators and students), in the field of education and training as we pursue excellence in our respective areas of interest.

I close with the Ghana National Anthem:

First stanza

    God bless our homeland Ghana

    And make our nation great and strong,

    Bold to defend forever

    The cause of Freedom and of Right;

    Fill our hearts with true humility,

    Make us cherish fearless honesty,

    𝄆 And help us to resist oppressors’ rule

    With all our will and might for evermore. 𝄇

Second stanza

    Hail to thy name, O Ghana,

    To thee we make our solemn vow:

    Steadfast to build together

    A nation strong in Unity;

    With our gifts of mind and strength of arm,

    Whether night or day, in the midst of storm,

    𝄆 In every need, whate’er the call may be,

    To serve thee, Ghana, now and for evermore. 𝄇

Third stanza

    Raise high the flag of Ghana

    and one with Africa advance;

    Black star of hope and honour

    To all who thirst for liberty;

    Where the banner of Ghana freely flies,

    May the way to freedom truly lie;

    𝄆 Arise, arise, O sons of Ghana land,    

And under God march on for evermore! 𝄇

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Pat A Boadu-Darko March 24, 2022 - 11:11 am

There is a big difference between merely learning a skill to meet set objectives and being educated about the need for that particular skill in the overall objective of productivity.
So that whereas it should is good for Hospitality or Travel sector staff to be great at performing skills for their jobs,it will be best for them to be educated on the relevance of that skill to the whole of such an intertwinned industry.
For example,one could learn the skill of baking a the best pie,but will need to know;be educated on how a good balanced meal and its great presentation at the table of a tourist affects their whole tourism experience of a resort,restaurant and consequently their whole visit to a particular region or country.

Egi Gaisie April 16, 2022 - 10:58 am

Thanks Pat., you have been an ardent reader of the blog. Thanks too for your comments.


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