Sales Management in the Hospitality Industry
Universidad de Barcelona
Area of Study
Business, Hospitality and Tourism Management
Taught In English
Recommended U.S. Semester Credits3
Recommended U.S. Quarter Units4
Hours & Credits
The sales process is increasingly important, reinforced by the economic cycle that the hospitality sector is experiencing. What is selling? This course attempts to go beyond clichés and explore the essence of a successful sales process. Successful sales are not based on maximum production or consumption of products and services, but rather the creation of a lasting, mutually beneficial relationship between the company and the customer.
We will begin by presenting the essential vocabulary of the hospitality sector in general, and the important definitions related to commercial hospitality processes.
We will study psychological and emotional aspects that affect the sales-purchase process in the potential customer, as well as the importance of the experience component, both with the product and with the commercial process that accompanies the product.
We will also analyze commercial opportunities with real examples from hospitality products in Catalonia.
Finally, we will see how one should prepare for the sales process with role play and simulations in order to be able to begin and end that process successfully.
In order to provide a connection to real life, we will visit a fair / hotel or a presentation by a sales professional in the sector so the students can learn the secrets to good sales first-hand.
Work in an international context.
The hotel sector has a predisposition toward professional mobility, which requires demonstrating and updating knowledge regarding international, political, and economic realities; as well as adapting oneself to the changes that this professional mobility creates and knowing how to effectively communicate in other languages, showing interest and sensitivity towards other cultures and their people (promoting their full integration), such as customs, traditions, religion, etc.
Have customer orientation:
Have the motivation to understand and satisfy customers' needs (internal and external) when offering them services and / or products, keeping in mind all related aspects, responding to their requests and suggestions and, if possible, anticipating their needs, providing an immediate, appropriate response
Understand and implement quality standards within a tourism company's operations: A professional in this sector must be capable of evaluating the potential of a resource to be employed for tourism purposes. This includes knowing how to manage all of the different tools that aid in the design, development and operation of a project
Identify and manage the internal functions and operational processes of business units:
Success in tourism business management is measured by the capacity to coordinate different operational processes. This requires an understanding of how the complex structures, systems, and processes that comprise various tourism activities work: accommodation, food and beverage intermediation, and transportation.
Market tourism products, services, and projects:
The unique nature of the tourism sector due to its intangibility, inseparability and variability requires specialists in tourism marketing who can adapt strategies to the special features of tourism operations. Furthermore, these specialists must be able to apply elements of the marketing mix to the variety of contexts in the sector, understanding the customer's behavior, and identifying and using the most appropriate distribution and promotion methods.
Make the student aware that successful sales are only possible when the customer and their well-being are at the center of the process.
Know the essential sales vocabulary and know how to recognize and apply it in official documents.
Be able to choose the appropriate sales channel for each specific product and / or situation.
Understand the customer's reasoning and his motivations before making decisions in the purchasing process.
Understand that every employee has the potential to be a salesperson and implement upselling and cross-selling.
Know how to analyze a hospitality product, its unique selling point (USP) or distinguishing factors, and both its on-line and off-line sales strategy.
Appreciate the customer's role in the sales process
Know how to effectively introduce yourself so as to obtain a sales appointment.
Create and give a sales presentation in English.
The learning strategies employed are mainly aimed at the student developing the abilities associated with the skills identified. Below we specify the teaching-learning methodologies which will be applied to achieve the skills to be gained, as well as specifying how they will be developed:
- Theory: master classes, lectures, group projects.
- Theoretical-practical: application activities, problem-based learning, problem solving, practical exercises, research.
- Presentations: presentations of results. This will allow the student to receive feedback on how to improve his or her oral communication techniques and become accustomed to using information technology.
The tools used to evaluate the course are those which allow us to assess the course's contents in both a theoretical and practical way; such as objective tests, development tests, individual projects, group projects, in-class activities, oral presentations using IT, virtual forums, portfolios, practical cases, problem solving, etc.
Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.