Four Seasons

1177 Words Oct 2nd, 2011 5 Pages
Case Summary: Four Seasons Goes to Paris? – Entering a foreign market Basic facts about Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts is a Canadian international luxury hotel management company. Between 1996 and 2000 they increased revenues and margins by about 20% and 10% respectively. Their revenue per room was about 30% higher than that of their competitors. Four Seasons generally operates, but does not own, mid-sized luxury hotels and resorts. By 2002, they indisputably became the world 's leading operator of luxury hotels, managing 53 properties in 24 countries. The Four Seasons management structure follows the idea of regional adaption, meaning that each property has a general manager, who is supported by a regional …show more content…
Four interviews were held with every potential employee to get an idea as to whether the candidate could live up to Four Seasons ' philosophy. Therefore, attitude and willingness to adapt to the corporate culture were valued higher than prior experience. Moreover, they also hired staff with prior Four Seasons / U.S. experience to bring American and French culture closer together and reduce prejudice. Cross-Cultural Risks Four Seasons ensures a smooth opening for each new hotel by assigning a special “task force” of experienced Four Seasons managers to help establish norms and train staff. The task force that was put into action for Paris had to stay twice as long as for any other opening (seven to eight weeks rather than three). Responsible for this were the strong differences between the North American and the French culture. For example, French managers would not take the same accountability for decisions and policies as North American managers, they valued human relationships higher than punctuality and performance evaluations turned out to be somewhat difficult, since addressing problems directly was not appreciated in the French culture. As a recognition and evaluation program Four Seasons launched employee-of-the-month and employee-of-the-year programs, as well as an annual evaluation, both uncommon in France, but crucial management tools with Four Seasons. The high expectations for food and beverages in France made it necessary
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