I have been trying to book 300 people in for a corporate dinner at the Sheraton Skyline Hotel in Heathrow this morning. I wonder how they do business because it can't be in the traditional way of answering calls from potential customers.
My first call rang out without being answered. On my second call the receptionist 'directed my call' to someone's voicemail which told me that she was on holiday and gave me a number for someone who would 'return my call within 24 hours'. This isn't good enough, this is a competitive situation. The next two calls to the main hotel number were unanswered after 30 rings.
Finally my fifth call was answered by the receptionist. I explained that I have a large booking and would really like to speak with someone. I received a sincere apology and a promise to put me through to someone who could help me.
The phone rang and I was poised in anticipation. The phone was answered ... by the voicemail of the person who is on holiday.
It makes you want to scream. How on earth does this hotel do business? Do senior executives in these organisations ever test the system posing as clients?
Or perhaps the Sheraton Skyline Hotel Heathrow is already full and doesn't need a dinner for 300 people?