Cutting staff must be the absolute last resort for hoteliers fighting the looming recession, industry experts warned this week.
Savoy Group, said it would be a "real tragedy" if people lost their jobs and their houses.
"The last thing one should do is put people out of a job," he told an audience of leading British hoteliers. "There are a number of things one can do before you do that. You must give people the priority they deserve."
Gordon Campbell Gray, chairman of Campbell Gray Hotels, said that the idea of culling anyone from his team was "just horrendous".
"Until it was life-saving, we wouldn't get rid of anyone. But it may well happen because next year looks really frightening according to statistics," he said.
"I think the whole year could be catastrophic for many of us and I think it would be impossible to run the quality we run with the staff we have if the revenues dropped considerably."
Seminar chairman Bob Cotton, chief executive of the British Hospitality Association said the quality of staff is even more important than ever during a downturn.
"I am absolutely certain that, in difficult times, the one thing that will get you through are the skills of your people, whether it's the skills of the kitchen or the people out front offering excellent service," he said. "If you focus on that that is the thing to get you through the current difficulties."
Watch footage from the event hereVideo: Andrew McKenzie crowned Hotelier of the Year 2008 >>](http://www.caterersearch.com/Articles/2008/11/11/324579/video-andrew-mckenzie-crowned-hotelier-of-the-year-2008.html) [Economic slowdown could force drop in room rates >>](http://www.caterersearch.com/Articles/2008/11/24/324815/economic-slowdown-could-force-drop-in-room-rates.html) [Interview with Hotelier of the Year Andrew McKenzie >>](http://www.caterersearch.com/Articles/2008/11/17/324598/interview-with-hotelier-of-the-year-andrew-mckenzie.html) *By Amanda Afiya* E-mail your comments to [Amanda Afiya](mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org@rbi.co.uk) here. Caterersearch.com jobs Looking for a new job? Find your [next hotel job here](http://www.caterersearch.com/jobs/browse/hotel.htm) with Caterersearch.com jobs Â