Open Space For Hospitality (Hotel Industry)

Harrison Owen owen at
Fri Jul 16 04:36:30 PDT 1999

At 09:58 PM 7/7/99 -0400, you wrote:
>I have a client in the Hospitality Industry (Hotel) in Northern California
>with an executive team for which I have agreed to work. At lunch today the
>topic of a team meeting came up. Once a year they get all of the employees
>together and talk about what they are going to do for the rest of the year to
>make improvements, meet budget and get results, etc. The thought occurred to
>me that it might be a good opportunity for an Open Space. I have a very good
>relationship with the number 2 person at the property level, however, he
>would need to sell the idea to his boss who seems pretty open minded.
>My questions to the group are:
>1)      Has anybody done an OS for a hotel?
Open Space has been used rather extensively by ACCOR Hotels (brand names
include Novitel, Sofitel, Pullman, Motel 6 etc.) You will find the story in
"Tales from Open Space" in the article by Chris Schoch.
>2)      What's the least amount of time that would be required?
Depends totally on what they want to do. I would say anything less than a
day would be a waste of time, and 2 to 2 1/2 days would be just about right
if you really wanted to move from general discussion to getting some things
>3)      What percentage of the hotel employees is it feasible to have
>participate     given the fact that the hotel has to continue to run as a
I would guess that the question should be posed the other way around. What
is the minimal number of employees required to run the hotel?  I would look
for some down time (off season) when participation could be as high as
possible. Another thought is to declare the whole Hotel "Open Space." Folks
need only be present for the start up (creating space) and for the close --
at least it would be nice if they were present. Once the agenda is
established (stuff is on the wall) people can come and go pretty much as
they want and need to. I have never done this with a hotel, but I have done
it with a hospital which has the same sort of problems (can't close down) .


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