You do! Thank you to everyone who entered our awards programme. Entry is now closed, but we’d love it if you continued to share your best hacks. See below for a great range of hacks showcasing the small things people do to perfect processes, elevate experiences, and make their businesses better. Our winners can be found here.
Changing the way you do things, particularly within a hospitality business, is no easy effort – but you’re not alone. Join the Cornwall Hospitality Leaders Network (CHLN) to gain access to a wealth of knowledge. With around 100 business leaders and established links to high-profile industry players, the CHLN supports its members to unleash their potential.Enter your hack
Hire staff that are passionate about the brand and enjoy talking about the products
As described in the video, we’re turning animal bones into charcoal for cooking – creating less waste product and enhancing our nose-to-tail ethos.
The Old Quay House is a boutique hotel and restaurant in Fowey. We are lucky enough to have a fantastic head chef, Richard Massey. Richard…
Always provide a 5* service to enhance the customer experience
Excellent customer service is a main priority
Pay above the minimum wage – show you value your staff
Use Unfold to stay on brand and consistent with Instagram.
Prioritise local events, especially if they are a favourite amongst the locals
We use photo competitions as they are a great way to obtain quality photography.
We take on our difficult guests and I challenge staff to turn them round by the end of their stay.
Grow your own fruit, vegetables and herbs.
We provide a “forgotten essentials” box in each of our guest bedrooms.
If you look after your staff, your staff will look after your customers.
Re-purpose space to your business advantage
After beach cleans we give free cake and coffee
Getting on well with team members
All of our rooms include a book shelf with a good selection of paperbacks.
Hire staff who’s focus is customer service and are able to represent the brand
Make your staff feel secure by cutting zero hour contacts and introduce full time (even in off season)
Speak to your customers, know what they want and provide what they are asking for! Always chat to them with genuine care!
Provide guests with super pet friendly properties
Have a diverse range of products on offer to cater all types of customers!
Barnaby’s is a cosy, relaxed restaurant situated in the heart of Padstow in a former Victorian tearoom. Our menu is built around sharing, and we…
Identity your USP and promote it
Invest in your business for a beneficial return
Reply to email enquiries as fast as possible (within one hour) even if it’s just to acknowledge the email and say you’ll reply later.
We check everything is ready – from the heating being at the right temperature to the appliances all working properly.
Hire people who are passionate about the business
We’re providing the tools necessary for staff to spend more time with customers, and less hiding behind a counter or till.
Be creative with your waste – the bin is not always the final destination
Treat customers as you would like to be treated and provide great service
Employ volunteers as there is a lot to learn from them
Not having food in our cinema helps cut costs and customers appreciate this and give us great feed back.
Build a genuine rapport with your customers
Stay open and supply your local community
Think about the overall experience for your visitor from the first interaction to potential follow up opportunities.
Hire a team of people who are passionate about the product – it’ll sell itself!
Use local suppliers to support your neighbouring businesses
Create a subsidised lunch menu for your staff
Each month offer your staff a variety of incentives to drive motivation and keep up moral
Get to know your customers and build a real connection with them
Create loyalty cards and offers to reward returning customers
We created Martha’s Orchard-branded “bee friendly” seed packs – encouraging guests to take our “values” as well as our “brand” home with them.
I meet with every guest on arrival and give tailored tips and hints
Communication is important – make sure you can stay connected even in poor signalled areas
My wife Erica bakes delicious lemon drizzle cakes for our guests to enjoy on arrival.
The Beach at Bude is hosting five wine tasting dinners throughout the year in collaboration with its wine supplier.
Beach Retreats each year produces a staff survey to monitor trends within the work place and find out how employees view the company.
When Beach Retreats surveyed our guests in 2017 for their favourite beach, thousands voted and chose 79 beaches around the Cornish coastline. It was a…
Make sure the basics are set up to be efficient and save time i.e. use shortcuts on your keyboard!
We have created a campervan cardboard model of “Ivey”, our branded split-screen VW camper.
Employ from all over the world for a breadth of experience
Treat your staff well, they will then be the smiley face of your business and spread the love of your business.
Make sure staff fit culturally into the business
We have a separate vegetarian fridge.
At the St Michaels Resort, we recently reopened the health club after an extensive refurbishment. To make booking classes more convenient for our customers, we started…
It’s important to create a valued company culture for staff to enjoy the working environment
To engage people with the farm we have a blackboard that we update daily with what’s happening.
Always put the customer first – what are they looking for and what can you do to solve this gap
Collaborate with local schools and colleges and partner with careers-related organisations
Offering a 25% discount for people who bring re-usable containers for take away in promotes sustainability and increases profits.
Listen to the needs of your local community and make positive environmental changes where possible
Spend time with your staff to understand what improvements can be made in the business
Respect for staff roles and responsibility is very important
Put fresh flowers and greenery in every room. Lots of greenery, not too many flowers, works just as well and is cheaper!
Give out free samples to promote the business and to test what customers like
Make the work environment a happy place by being flexible with staff needs
You have the chance to be educated by your staff and customers every day.
We teamed up with a local business to coordinate supplies and delivery of up to 150 welcome packs a week.
Quality over quantity – make sure you have maintain the quality of your service
We have combined food with the fun activity of pottery painting
Go Green where possible
Be open to review/change your operations to improve your business
In my experience of working for a variety of successful businesses, I’ve seen managers and owners try to emulate other places but at the cost…
Use a digital communication platform to share information amongst colleagues
We have a local legend, boxer, he’s 82 who works here and people always come just to see him.
We serve Cornish cream tea on arrival for our guests
We listened to guest feedback to make welcome packs not only more luxurious, but more convenient.
A great picture will go a long way
Build a social media following and use it to promote your business
Letting team members have ‘their thing’. This means allowing us to explore areas of the business we’re interested in, and giving us the confidence and…
At Una Kitchen – part of Una St Ives – we recently changed our restaurant’s layout to create an ‘open kitchen’. As well as creating…
We love to use our imagination and our staff’s talents to make the cafe a lovely space.
Keep up to date with apps and social media in order to promote your business and keep up to date with current trends!
When starting out or any time really, understanding your MVP (minimum viable product) is essential.
Employ the right people for the job and train them in their field to do the best job
Make sure you know your USP and stand out from the crowd
Collaborate with your business neighbours
Some forward-thinking around the purchasing of vital business consumables freed up funds to invest in a bigger project that meant we could stay open later…
Make sure you are using your cafe/business space to maximise profitability!
Be proactive with feedback and gratitude to provide added value and get repeat business.
Use WeTransfer for transferring large files for free!
Be open, every day. You never know who, how and what will come through the door.
Speak to your customers – don’t rely on a machine
Always offer great discounts for your local community – this small investment creates more business!
Invest in company culture for returns on a better business
Invest time in your staff and your loyal customers
Changing language can be key to setting up the future sale of a business
We provide doggy bags for all customers that bring dogs
Letting my staff see the company P&L sheet gives them a full understanding of the costs associated with doing business.
Consistent food quality is everything
Through the powers of Twitter, and using the term “Coming to Cornwall” in the search box in 2013, I came across a gentleman that my…
We have separate menus for specific dietary requirements i.e. vegan, dairy free, gluten free
Collaborate with younger customers as a form of market research
Use the power of social sharing online promote your business, powered by your customers
What else can your business offer that is unique?
Use positive language to increase customer experience
Prawn on the Lawn is a fully licensed fishmonger and restaurant in Padstow. Eating shellfish can, of course, be a messy business – so we…
Listen to your community for feedback
We make sure we meet and greet all guests either on arrival day or very soon after.
Take time in hiring the right person for the position and the brand to make a great company culture
Out days involving all staff lets them see where our produce comes from before we start our menus.
We create mind-blowing, plant-based desserts and treats including cheesecakes, cakes and slices.
Do an Easter egg hunt around your property at Easter.
Never refer to the company’s employees as “staff”, they are your team.
Collaborate with other businesses to promote your own
We make personalised cards with names and tailored welcome messages for particular guests to make them feel at home.
Research your competitors price list as a benchmark
Utilise online platforms such as Whatsapp, Facetime etc to connect with colleagues
We’re using leftovers to make dog biscuits, iced coffee and home brew beans.
We always think about our customers’ needs to make their stay as simple and enjoyable as possible.
Boost posts that have already received more attention than others.
At Good Vibes cafe most of our staff are trained to work both front of house and in the kitchen.
Engage with your audience quickly and regularly so you can create a rapport with customers
I work on a disused railway line. I have an old phone box and will be interviewing a driver, then I will use this recording…
Use your location to your advantage
Encourage feedback from customers for the best business improvements
We make our fudge in front of people in the shop
A good strong, loyal team is led by a great manager
Think of other ways your business can serve the public
Complaints are important to improve and to care from your customer
Provide high quality linen and bedding to give guests a good night sleep.
Get names of children and dogs staying in your cottage and leave them a present.
Provide customers with discounts with a value that equates to something significant in real terms.
Encourage customers to review on Google, as gold stars draw the eye when Googling and searching online.
Creating a warm atmosphere for your customers will make a big difference
Give customers time to talk to you and engage.
We provide a “top ten” list of things to do/places to see for our guests.
Use other sectors websites to look for trends.
Look for the next big trend in the hospitality industry – and introduce that into your business
Provide the highest quality food to get customers wanting more and coming back
Build a relationship with the local community
It’s important to look after and listen to your staff properly so they are able to do their job
We serve food but if the kitchen is closed, it’s BYOF (bring your own food)
We are putting chalkboards in our lodges so housekeeping can leave a personalised message