Four Seasons Hotels And Resorts Enter Paris Market - Case Study In Global Business Expansion

four seasons hotels enters paris market resort global brand expansion

When the Four Seasons hotel chain decided to expand into Paris France with the Hotel George V, it was a big move for the hospitality industry. They have been a standard bearer for the hotel and resort industries around the world for nearly half a century. 

Here's what one marketer thought about Four Seasons hotels company and them expanding their global brand: 

What Is It Like To Stay At The Four Seasons Resorts And Hotels? 

Staying at the Four Seasons is unique compared to staying at any other high-end luxury hotel. It provides more than just typical hotel accommodations and amenities such as guest rooms, gym, pool, etc; it provides deeper insight into the culture of the region in which the hotel resides. As a guest, you will have the services and hospitality customized to what would be expected by the culture of the region. 

Does Corporate Culture Play A Role In The Success Of The Four Seasons Hotel Chain?

Corporate culture plays a major role in the success of the Four Seasons as it is one of the primary reasons that Four Seasons is able to maintain its success and have its employees buy-in to the belief that exceptional services and customize that service to the region of each hotel location. In order to continue to provide such a service, there must be strong belief among the employees and management in the value of taking the additional steps required. A key method for building this corporate culture is the management structure and their compensation. General Managers are responsible for supervising the day-to-day operations at a single location were able to acquire a bonus of 30% which was based on variables such as employee attitudes, service quality, and profit. As service and the attitudes of employees represent 50% of the evaluation of the General Manager, it strongly encourages the General Manager to create a great work environment for employees. Creating a great work environment for employees will get their buy-in to the company’s mission of providing great service for their guests. By providing great service, the hotel location will increase profits and the General Manager will earn their entire bonus. 

Does Human Resources Play A Role In The Success Of The Four Seasons Hotels? 

Human resources plays a major role in the success of the Four Seasons because of the recruitment, recognition and benefits it employs for the organizations. The recruitment and selection process involves a deep look at each and every candidate and ensures that if he/she work at a hotel location, they share the same values related to providing exceptional service for its guest. In terms of recognition, the company presents an employee-of-the-month and employee-of-the-year programs that encourage employee feedback and stressed no favoritism toward certain employees. This gave employees a goal to work towards and kept employees motivated to take the extra steps to provide exceptional customer service. Finally, management made the necessary to ensure that its employees have personal lives by providing schedules that are flexible and accommodating to employees. 

How Do You Feel About The Way In Which The Four Seasons Entered The Paris Market?

I believe that the way in which the Four Seasons entered the Paris/French market was an appropriate way to enter a market, but further analysis of the rules and culture should have been done. I believe that Four Seasons did their due diligence on the impact of becoming a French employer in regards to French labor laws, and identified any and all similarities with operations in North America to help the transition into new management methods and policies. I believe this to be the best approach they took to enter the market; identifying commonalities and adjusting accordingly such as in the case of termination where the culture of the Four Seasons and France shared a notion of not firing at will. Something that was lacking about the entry strategy was miscalculating the impact of the work schedule that French employees were accustomed to. With multiple days-off, 35 hour work weeks and more holidays, personnel management was a more difficult task than was to be expected. Not being able to envision the impact that certain cultural changes would have on the business forced Four Seasons to accommodate and adjust their strategy in a manner they may not have preferred. 

Do The Lessons From This Case Study Apply To Firms Entering Countries Other Than France? What Types Of Markets And Industries? 

I believe the lessons from this case applies to firms entering countries other than France as it shows how important it is to evaluate the culture of a market and its people and determine the impact that the culture has on the business. I believe that a firms needs to adjust to a culture and not try to enforce its corporate culture on the market, it has to be a collective adjustment. I believe this lesson could be applied to entering any market that features differences in work schedules and a difference in work mentality (willing to work long hours compared to more holidays and vacation days). I believe these differences will require to most analysis in determining whether or not to enter the market. 

Coronavirus Conclusion 

While the Four Seasons hotel chain foray into France was relatively successful for several years, the Coronavirus pandemic could be the final test. Covid-19 has wreaked havoc on the hospitality, travel, venue, and luxury industries in France and around the world. Only time will tell if the Four Seasons hotel and resort expansion plan will be a beneficial one.

The Lean Startup Life Media Network Newest Blog Posts: