The Role of the Housekeeping Department in the Hospitality Industry

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Arriving late for shifts is the problem analyzed in this discussion. This is a big problem taking into account the role played by the housekeeping department in the hospitality industry. Being the department responsible for cleanliness, maintenance and general upkeep of the rooms and surroundings, it determines the consumer satisfaction and experience since it takes the pride of keeping the hotel comfortable and appealing to the guests. Ideally, the sensation a guest visiting has upon encountering a tidy and convenient arranged room sends a stronger message than any other level of service and friendliness. Therefore, this department has a significant implication to the success and growth of the hospitality industry. In this case, the sales of rooms normally contributes above 50% of the total sales made daily.

The issue raised in scenario 2 involves a housekeeping worker, Kitty. Despite being a keen and excellent worker which is acknowledgeable, she has in the last days arrived late for shifts on three occasions in the last 10 days. This implies that her work have to be performed by the other workers until she arrives which is jeopardizing the normal operations. Although the other team members have not complained about her actions, the lateness has negative implications on the organization’s performance. For instance, because she arrived late again and particularly on a busy day, this department was unable to meet its set goals.

According to our company corporate policy, the employee performance and conduct is documented which offers the basis for counselling, performance appraisal and promotions. The documentation was necessary to determine Kitty’s previous performance and associated conduct at the work place. Secondly, the company code of conduct documents how the employees should conduct themselves while in service. Under the general principles, the employees for instance are required to observe and comply with the internal rules and procedures established by the company. Among such procedures, employees are obligated to arrive at their places of duty early enough to avoid any form of inconveniences. Therefore, Kitty was contravening the established company code of conduct.

Theory and techniques

Legal and ethical issues have far reaching implications on the counselling sessions. This is due to the ethical standards and laws that manage counselling. There are several ethical issues based on Kitchener’s five moral principles which include justice, autonomy, non-maleficence and fidelity. In this case Autonomy has several implications on the concept of independence and the ability to make decisions. This implies that the counselling sessions should provide Kitty with the ability to make her decisions independently without any influence. Secondly, the justice principle brings about the aspect of treating a person fairly and excludes the fact of treating each person the same way. Despite her actions, Kitty should be treated fairly and her treatment should be unique to her situation among other personal special cases. Therefore the counselling session had to maintain the principle of justice at all cost.  The principle of beneficence require undertaking a session which is in the best interest of the worker. In this case, the counselling session should focus on better performance of the employee involved. In addition, the principle of non-maleficence obligates that the counselling activity should not at any instance harm the subject either psychologically or emotionally. Lastly, the principle of fidelity managed the terms of engagement. The principle involves the concepts of faithfulness, loyalty as well as honoring the commitments made. In this case, both the parties involved had to comply with the five moral principles.

Best practice guidelines during counselling are managed by laws. In this light, there are several legal issues that managed the interaction between the two parties during the session. Such issues include the counselling relationship which managed the informed consent which included goals, procedures and the purpose of the counselling. Secondly, the sessions had to fulfill confidentiality, privileged communication and privacy. This means that Kitty’s right to confidentiality and privacy had to be upheld. Lastly, as the counsellor, I had to uphold the highest level of professional responsibility such as using techniques and modalities grounded on counselling theories and rule of practice.

Several basic theories are applicable in the counselling session. The behavioral theory can be applied in the counselling sessions to provide an insight on the necessary and effective behavior modification techniques. The cognitive theory is basic in performance counselling as it focuses on how individuals can change and behaviors. Therapy based on cognitive theory is oriented toward problem solving thus suitable for this case aiming at solving the lateness problem. The humanistic theories such as client-centered therapy focuses on achieving the individual’s highest potential. Therapy based on this theory focus on the potentiality of employees controlling their own destinies thus being applicable in this scenario. Lastly the holistic and integrative theory can be significant in this scenario if applied. The theory involves integration of various elements upheld by different theories to a particular case. Application of this theory can provide a holistic approach.

To analyze this situation, there are three motivation theories, the Maslow’s needs hierarchy, Adams’ equity and Herzberg-two factor theories that are applicable. The Maslow’s needs hierarchy theory can be applied in this performance counselling session to determine self-actualization. This reflects an individual’s desire to grow and develop her potential. In particular the theory can enable determine Kitty’s desire .The Adams’ equity theory is based on social exchange theory. This particular theory is effective in analyzing the factors that motivate people as it states that individuals are motivated if treated equitably and receive compensation which they perceive as fair for their costs and efforts. On the other hand, the Herzberg- two factor theory cab be used to determine the factors that Kitty and other team members feel contributes to job satisfaction. The theory describes some of the factors that cause job satisfaction and also dissatisfaction.  

            As the counsellor, I use several techniques throughout the counselling session. They include the use of close section to get agreement that the problem of arriving late in the work place existed. Secondly, I used open questions to get more information about the problem. This technique provided room for Kitty to express herself and provide her opinions about the issue. I also avoided leading questions to allow her to express her ideas without any influence or form of coercion. To facilitate effective communication, I used active listening skills and kept a close eye contact. This enabled full concentration into the matter.


The purpose was to seek agreement that the problem existed, cause of the problem and lastly provide an effective solution which will improve her performance. To accomplish this, I did prepare before the session to get the required information that would facilitate the interview. Pre-interview preparation involved several measures which included reviewing the employee’s background, education, training and experiences. It also included determining the strengths, weaknesses and developments to be discussed with the employee involved, enlightened myself with what was agreed in terms of job responsibility. In addition, I made sure that she had advance notice for the interview to enable her own preparation.

During the session, I was informal and friendly. Most importantly I explained to her the purpose of the two way communication and the importance the issue had on her overall performance. Secondly I encouraged and provided the employee with the chance to discuss how she appraises her own performance and practice. I also encouraged her to tell her own plans before I suggested what I had for her development. We later discussed her plans to determine how suitable they are together with my plans for her development. Finally, I made a record of the strategies and plans we both made and the way the follow up should be conducted.

The friendly environment provided a suitable platform for a two way communication. She was able to understand the underlying issue and the impact her performance and actions had on the overall performance of the department. She provided a feedback illustrating how she appraises her own performance as well as her plans. My plans for her development were much acceptable to her and we configured how they could complement her future plans.


The counselling session was able to address the issue at hand. Kitty was able to provide her own view about her current situation and the plans she has to improve the performance. Much importantly, we agreed on the way to roll out my developments plan for her to complement her plans. The counselling session was effective and efficient at addressing scenario such as the one that faced Kitty. The organization should adopt the strategy of counselling for better performance as it provides a platform for a discussion between the employee and manager.

The techniques used were useful and effective. To start with, the communication skills provide a friendly and conducive environment for the discussion. We were able to agree that there was a problem and also provided a platform where she could express her opinion about the problem. The techniques provided her with the freedom to speak out her mind without my influence or a feeling of victimization.


Byrnes, J. (2017). Performance management: what is it and how can it help?.

Marescaux, E., De Winne, S., & Forrier, A. (2017). Developmental HRM, employee well‐being and performance: The moderating role of developing leadership. European Management Review.

October 24, 2023


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