Four Things for Q4: How to End the Year Right

It is never too late to make lasting, positive change. Even if you wish you had been doing this stuff all year, use the momentum of the last 92 days of the year -- 60 working days!!! -- to end the year right and set your hotel up for a strong 2020.

1. Schedule a pipeline review every week.

  • Week One: Review all prospects and tentatives over the next 12 months, and get status updates on the likelihood that each piece of business will close by Dec. 31.

  • Weeks Two & Three: Review all prospects and tentatives arriving in the next 90 days, and brainstorm closing strategies for each one. Should you incentivize a contract signature with a special offer? Is there a hot button or buy factor you didn't address yet?

  • Week Four: Review all prospects and tentatives arriving over the next 90 days that haven't responded to your follow-ups, and pull out the big guns. Have your DOSM, GM, or RVP call to let them know how much you want the business.

2. Make four prospecting calls every day.

Notice I said calls. No one calls anymore, even though it freaking works. Call four clients every day - you'll stand out!

3. Identify your 2020 need dates. 

Start with months. On your pace report, which months have fewer definites than same time last year? Even if there is a good reason for the shortfall (i.e., the Super Bowl isn't repeat business), it's still a need month.

Once you've got the months, look at days of week (i.e., all Saturdays in April) and even specific dates. Share the list of need dates with your team and make sure they are offering them as alternatives on every piece of business.

That's right - every piece of business. Often, meeting planners don't realize their dates are flexible until they get RFP responses, so save them a step by always offering alternative dates.

4. Run the numbers early and often.

Make sure that every sales person knows what it will take to max out the year-end bonus and where they stand. Also, create a visual measuring stick for your cross-over/pre-sell goal and update it every week.