Hoteliers have been told to look at disruption of the traditional hotel model as a positive.
That was the advice of Thomas Dubaere (pictured), managing director of AccorHotels, in his keynote speech at the Annual Hotel Conference 2016 in Manchester yesterday (12 October).
He said: "Disruption empowers you, it empowers your business, and it can empower your people."
"I will not accept that the millennial mindset is just for millennials. This mindset empowers your business," he told delegates at the Hilton Deansgate hotel.
He urged hoteliers to take millennials into account more when making decisions.
Dubaere described the generation as innovative and creative people who want perfect working Wi-Fi, social spaces and to be surprised.
AccorHotels owns the Sofitel, Mercure and Ibis brands and runs Adagio aparthotels. It also has shares in home-share businesses Squarebreak and Oasis Collection and acquired high-end serviced home start-up Onefinestay earlier this year.
He said the recent acquisitions were about broadening AccorHotels' offer "but more importantly about acquiring state-of-the-art technology and digital knowledge".
Dubaere said AccorHotels aimed to provide a data-driven customer experience by using customers' preferences to surprise them. He cited a drink made to a customer's requirements waiting for them at the bar on check-in.
"Millennials are looking for open spaces where they can eat and socialise with their friends. We have chosen to put our customers in front of people, so they feel welcome," he said.