'Kijkje in de Keuken' this time in De Bijenkorf

9 October, 2018
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On 4 September, the 6th edition of Kijkje in de Keuken by House of Hospitality took place in De Bijenkorf, where we were inspired by De Bijenkorf’s vision on hospitality. The evening started off with a presentation about the successful hospitality concept of De Bijenkorf, by Edwin Wilkens, service manager. He shared their multi-channel strategy, which entails approaching the guest via mobile phones, computers and of course most importantly in the store.

In terms of hospitality in the stores, the proactive attitude of the staff is key. A warm welcoming approach leads not only to personalised shopping experience of the guest, but pays off as well by an increase in sales. It is important that staff members realise that the guest is the most important factor and earns 100% attention at all times. Therefore, no vacuuming, restocking, administration or restorations activities during opening hours. Finally, De Bijenkorf pays a lot of attention to the staff members by trusting them and giving them freedom. 

After the presentation the group was spilt into smaller groups for a tour inside De Bijenkorf. We were shown the rooftop terrace, several rooms for designing and compiling designs for the display windows, the loading dock and the temporary storage rooms on each floor. The evening ended with a drink in their restaurant.  

We really enjoyed the interesting presentation and tour, but what did the participants think about it? Here are some of their reactions:

“Trusting your employees and giving them freedom apparently leads to a better and more hospitable experience for the guest: very interesting!”

“Hospitality by making eye contact with a guest and approaching them to check if you can be of service to them increases the revenue considerably: that is something I did not know yet.”

“The customer journey of De Bijenkorf is more than a purchase: it starts with being greeted by the safety guard at the entrance and it ends only after the purchase. It creates a valuable memory.”

“Motivated employees are so important!”

“Even when you are not directly serving a guest, you are (indirectly) working on their experience. If you keep this in mind when you are working on the less interesting tasks, you are more motivated to do it: good tip!”

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Hotelschool The Hague

Hotelschool The Hague was founded and funded in 1929 by the hospitality industry to create a central place where industry partners could gain and share new insight, skills and knowledge. Since its foundation, the Hotelschool has become an international school specialised in hospitality management offering a 4-year Bachelor's degree in Hotel and Hospitality Management. This degree course is also available as the accelerated International Fast Track programme. Our 13 month Master Hospitality Management programme is designed to deliver the next generation of hospitality innovators.

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