Concentrating on providing great hospitality provides better compliance outcomes than concentrating foremost on compliance alone, which can ultimately diminish hospitality provided.
Great hospitality takes care of compliance!
Compliance here means; not breaching the liquor act or having negative incidents either onsite the licensed venue or off.
And hospitality here means;
- Providing patrons with a safe space to enjoy themselves socialising in
- Providing patrons with an enjoyable, pleasant environment;
- A good, positive, hospitality vibe in the venue
- No surrounding patrons being disturbing to the point of nuisance
- An experience befitting the expected calibre of the venue’s product / service
- Letting patrons drink what they want to, within the law, whilst assisting those who require it to not reach intoxication i.e. to not become a mess
- Offering patrons measures to take on so as to fend off hangovers and regretful behaviour
- Treating patrons in a hospitable way i.e. not like they’re a pain
RSA Marshals have the potential to greatly add to a venue’s hospitality and compliance but as they stand at the moment there are a number of problems with them that stand in the way of them achieving these to best effect.
Here’s a list 5 of these problems and the solutions for each so that RSA Marshals can be better utilised by a venue.
1) Their name
Marshal is a negative label, it’s not hospitality inducing. Monitor is not much better.
Call them RSA “Hosts”. Both staff in the role and the patrons themselves will appreciate this.
The word “host” flips the script, immediately putting the person working the role into a hospitality frame of mind. They begin automatically to look out for the patrons’ hospitality experience.
They become more focused on assisting patrons to not reach intoxication than just identifying it when it occurs.
2) Their uniform
The authorities like RSA Hosts to stand out. It’s best though if they can blend in, only being identifiable if someone really looks at them.
The basic reason for this is that it relaxes the patrons, they don’t feel overly watched.
The staff too can then relax into their role. Patrons act more naturally around them so the RSA Host can then see more easily if patrons are at risk of intoxication etc. and then act accordingly.
RSA Hosts can then discreetly talk to patrons and assist them which doesn’t embarrass the patrons or make the situation unnecessarily awkward.
3) The people who venues get to do the role
The next thing that’s wrong with RSA Hosts is that it’s mistakenly not seen as an important role to fill so not much effort is put in to find someone who is great for it.
RSA Hosts should be as important to a venue as their bar staff in terms of being a personable representation of the establishment. Think of having someone host your patrons who is capable of fitting in with them and who gets along with them very well.
A RSA Host should be social, personable, friendly, hospitable, responsible and committed to the patrons’ real hospitality experience.
4) Allowing them to do Ask To Leaves (ATL)
The problem with allowing this is that things can go wrong with ATLs e.g. the patron can abuse the staff member or threaten them or even attack them.
When staff have bad experiences with patrons it distances them from them, it begins to generate an “us, them” mentality in the staff’s mind. It also can create awkward relationships between the patron ATL and their group should they return at a later date.
We want RSA Hosts to be on the side of patrons, we want them to be looking out for the patrons to have a great time and to always be in that headspace of looking to provide a great hospitality experience to them.
Better to get security to do ATLs if you can.
5) Only using RSA Hosts if a liquor licence requires it
Something that I would advise venues to do, such is the positive effect that RSA Hosts have, is to put them in even if your licence doesn’t require it.
You’ll find they’ll pay their own way as they’ll stop ATLs, people from leaving early, increase hospitality experienced in the venue and so on.
Please contact us for further information on training RSA Hosts.