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Impact of Cultural Differences in Customer Expectations (Research Paper Sample)


Explain the impact of cultural differences in customer expectations for hotel or resort experiences. Explain how Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts ensures maximum customer satisfaction in light of cultural differences.

Impact of cultural differences in customer expectations for hotel or resort experiences
The global growth of the service industry imposes numerous dealings between people with diverse cultural backgrounds. Culture is closely related to values, customs and norms, which results in behavioral differentiation. Consequently, dissimilarities in expectations arise during service encounters as employees, customers or suppliers. Hotels and other sectors in the hospitality industry face tasks of cross-cultural service encounters and constantly have to evaluate their performance against the anticipations of their employees, suppliers and customers. Homogenizing and supposing that all customers will have similar expectations and perceptions of customer service is not satisfactory in the present increasing population of global travellers. Visitors from diverse cultures will have diverse anticipations for a hotel experience. The cultural background of guests influences their service expectations.
To gain an understanding of guests’ expectations, the knowledge of their different cultural norms and traditions is vital. Culture extricates a particular group of people from the rest, and establishes the status quo for conventional attitudes and behaviors. One aspect may be adequate to one culture, but may not be tolerable in another. The American culture of leaving tips in hotels, restaurants, parking valets or bars, for instance, is considered an act of generosity in the US. However, the same tradition may be seen as an insult or an act or rudeness in other parts of the world such as Japan.
The management of Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts recognize that cultural diversity is a significant influence on their core business. As such, the management engages in activities that are sensitive to the local culture of the community in which they are operating. While the hotel has a single motive in their entire target markets, that of providing an international hotel to the luxury or business travellers, the management endeavors to adapt their services to their target markets. The company has global standards, but different ways of accomplishing these standards. This implies that every hotel has to be tailored to fit its national environment. The management acknowledges that international travellers expect to feel like they are a part of the local community, as opposed to feeling like they in an American hotel in a foreign land.
The present day’s tourism business environment, as well as the multicultural diversity of global tourists portrays the growing significance of creating a deeper understanding of the culturally diverse tourists. A host’s aptitude to respond meritoriou...
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