Is your revenue manager the next superhero?

A top agent for your hotel, the revenue manager is charged with bringing back much needed zing into your revenue management tactics, changing the direction of your RevPar graph and adding to the bottom line.

Your revenue manager is one who takes the lead on implementing strategic change. This is an analytical person with the mind of a machine, but also a great leader – try selling change to top management, it takes someone with guts to get in front of property owners and tell them that what they’re doing is wrong!

You revenue manager is a ‘geek who can speak’. And that’s just one of his/her talents. Here is a short list of many talents this legend should have.

Analytical: the number cruncher

Remember the story of Alan Turing from The Imitation Game, the guy who tries to crack the German enigma code in a nail-biting race against time during the dark days of World War II?

Your revenue manager is Alan Turing. He/she is entrusted with optimising rates based on vast amounts of data and is expected to constantly crunch this information, extrapolate it and make key decisions based on this analysis. Even with the best technology tools available, it takes a master to crack the optimisation code.

Fortune teller and wizard

If something has to go wrong, your revenue manager will be the first person to notice and report – if he/she is good, anyways! A revenue manager is that wizard who understands demand, present and future, and has the courage to take tough decisions based on this information.

Sharp as a swordsman

Successful strategic pricing decisions require gathering and interpreting data from a multitude of sources; and not all these sources are perfect. Your revenue manager is a samurai, technology being the sword and data the target. He/she needs to precisely and quickly overcome quality problems, make adjustments and deconstruct the data into meaningful information that supports strategic decision making.

Risk taker

Your revenue manager is gutsy, the wolf of the hospitality industry. This is a person who takes risks, not for thrills but because he/she is creative and has a knack for this trade. A good revenue manager should be willing to push boundaries and go beyond the usual because of this talent. And it’s true, when you’re willing to take risks, the rewards are greater.

Unmatched negotiation skills

With negotiation skills like Jerry Maguire, you revenue manager is one works closely with departments across the organisation, and influences the decisions they make. This person is an adept negotiator who can navigate tricky political waters to drive results and ‘show you the money’.

Tech brain

In one of the most human industries, hospitality, your revenue manager is the matrix who uses automation to improve productivity and efficiency.

Revenue managers have always needed to be comfortable utilising revenue management software, interacting with databases and performing ad hoc analyses in external analytics packages. They understand PMS, booking engines, digital marketing, web design, mobile platforms and social media platforms. Any of these decisions will have an impact on your revenue performance. It is imperative that the revenue manager is savvy enough to understand the implications and build a solid strategy around them.

A born leader

The best revenue managers spend as much of their time managing people and building relationships as they do managing revenue; this is an essential quality and what makes them leaders. With leadership skills and a sense of fearlessness – the risk taking we mentioned earlier – your revenue manager will go far.

Often hoteliers and property owners think only of the cost associated with revenue manager – the good guys definitely don’t come cheap. But it is important to think like them and consider the return on investment, rather than focus on the cost of hiring them. If you find someone who can shift the revenue dial for you, he is worth it. Make the investment and reap the rewards.

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