How does Fairmont Le Montreux Palace retain Its Generation Y employees?

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Charoenchai Agmapisarn


Growing up with the IT innovations of the economic boom era, Generation Y employees, born between 1980 and 1997, are now increasingly entrants into the hospitality workforce, particularly the hotel business. Because of its highly global and competitive environment, many hotel employees, particularly the younger generation, are required to deliver a high level of customer satisfaction through the standardized services of hotel operations, often resulting in a high turnover rate. Thus retaining young employees, which is Generation Y, is one of the challenging tasks for hotel managers.

This case study is based primarily on themes gained during a personal interview with Mr. Michael Smithuis, general manager of Fairmont Le Montreux Palace-a luxury five star hotel in Montreux, Switzerland.  He explained his approach to the management and retention of his young ‘Generation Y’ employees despite the problems of burn-out and the low challenge of hotel jobs.

The findings suggest that “listening” and “respect” are the two significant concepts central to Mr. Smithuis’ management of his hotel’s Generation Y employees

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