A UK network of experts launched a year ago to help hospitality businesses affected by lockdown has reached a milestone £200,000 worth of opportunities.
The Hospitality Partnership was founded by West Midlands-based tourism sales supremo Jan Denning. Although its work started before the pandemic, it was re-launched in December 2020 as a way of supporting hard-hit hotels, venues and other hospitality and tourism-related businesses.
As the partnership marks its first birthday, there are now more than 30 partners, sharing in more than £200,000 of recorded opportunities in a range of services including procurement, sales training, licensing, marketing, mental health, sustainability and more.
Jan says that one of the first wins came within weeks of the launch when almost half the partnership joined forces to deliver a series of workshops and coaching. This was as part of a government-led Peer to Peer initiative.
“The different areas of expertise proved invaluable and enabled the businesses involved to focus on their particular needs of these specialist areas,” Jan added.
Thanks to one of its specialist partners, the organisation is now also a government gateway for the Kickstart programme, supporting businesses and young people into the industry.
There’s now a waiting list of would-be members for the invite-only organisation.
Jan recognised an urgent need for professional support at a make-or-break time for the hospitality industry and a shout out on social media led to significant support.
Now, as well as the partnership completing its first 12 months, Jan’s vision and commitment has earned her and the network as a whole, prestigious accolades from the respected nationwide professional body, the Meetings Industry Association.
Not only did Jan win the MIA Individual Excellence award, the partnership was a finalist for the Team Excellence Award, with judges paying tribute to Jan’s enthusiasm, passion, professionalism, energy and compassion.
Jan said: “The Hospitality Partnership was re-modelled and built out of a time of crisis to support the industry when it was needed most and with the foresight of longer-term challenges like resource and budget cuts.
“We have created a team of well respected, well connected, proven industry experts, and created a ‘go to’ resource.
“All our members share a common goal of helping businesses within our sector by offering affordable, cost-effective and flexible business solutions, all under one umbrella organisation.
“Without a doubt, flexible working is here to stay. It is time for our sector, especially independent operators, to look at new ways of doing business; a more cost-effective way of doing business, delivering results without compromise to brand or quality, paying for only the time they need to get the job done.”
“I honestly believe in this model of doing business, it is a win-win for those businesses who need expert services but do not need full time or permanent roles.”
Gavin Percy, MD of Balancing Edges, said: “Working with my colleagues at The Hospitality Partnership has been refreshing and exciting. The concept really fills a gap in the market and all the partners share the desire to maximise the benefit to our clients.”
Julian Tee, founder and director of Compass Hotels Management, added: “I am delighted to be an associate partner of the Hospitality Partnership, working alongside a group of highly skilled, experienced industry professionals whose skills complement each other so well.”
Jack Appleton, founder of Relentless Media, said: “As a social media specialist and responsible for the hospitality partnership digital marketing, the growth and engagement has been outstanding.”