Case Analysis: "Customer-Driven Learning at Radisson Hotels Worldwide"

Essay by christysparkmanUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, December 2008

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In the case study titled "Customer-Driven Learning at Radisson Hotels Worldwide" the background, growth, and service guarantees of the Radisson Hotel chain is discussed. Radisson Hotels was founded in 1938 by Curtis L Carlson of Carlson Companies Inc. The company's headquarters were located in Minneapolis, Minnesota and was divided into four operating groups - Carlson Hospitality Worldwide, Carlson Wagonlit Travel, Carlson Marketing Group, and Carlson Leisure Group. In 1975 Radisson only had ten hotels but quickly grew to three hundred and sixty locations in forty seven countries by 1998 by partnering with existing hotel companies creating Radisson SAS Worldwide under the "growth at any cost" model. By 1998 Carlson Hospitality Worldwide included Radisson Hotels Worldwide, Country Inns & Suites by Carlson, TGI Friday's, Regent Hotels, Italianni's, Friday's Front Row Sports Grill, Friday's American Bar, and Radisson Seven Seas Cruises (Schroeder, pg 454).

Also in 1998 Curt Carlson's daughter Marilyn Carlson Nelson took over as CEO of the Carlson Companies. It was at this time that Brian Stage, Radisson's president, and Maureen O'Hanlon, Radisson's executive vice president, started taking initiatives to transform the "growth at any cost" model to becoming a more customer-focused brand. To achieve this transformation from the current diverse hotel quality, they included a service guarantee, a guest satisfaction measurement program, and employee satisfaction measurement program, and an information technology initiative. Their goal was to make Radisson the "most trusted and respected brand worldwide" (Schroeder, pg 454). To support these strategies, Stage and O'Hanlon initiated a 100% guest satisfaction program, a fully integrated guest information system, guest and employee satisfaction measurement programs, guest recognition and rewards program, and a genuine hospitality program.

Customer satisfaction is a relative concept that varies from one customer to another (Schroeder, pg. 147). A service guarantee is a promise by a company...