The Golden Bean Hotel; The Case of Continuous Improvement

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The Golden Bean Hotel; The Case of Continuous Improvement

The Golden Bean Hotel; The Case of Continuous Improvement

I am Ahimaa, (pronounced a:hi:maa) a Customer Experience (CX) Management Practitioner. I am wired to look out for customer experience-related issues at every service encounter. Though I agree with the aphorism that the sum is greater than the parts, I believe that in CX the parts are as important as the sum as the devil is in the detail.

I recently visited the Golden Bean Hotel in Kumasi and was pleasantly surprised. My last visit in 2020 was uneventful. However, my recent experience in August 2023 saw a great deal of improvement in service experience which is worth sharing. The experience from reservation to check out was fantastic. I felt visible and valued at every touchpoint as I embarked on the customer journey.

As a returning guest an emotional connection was established right at the reservation stage. I was addressed by my name, and this made me feel valued. Not that I was remembered by voice (as the reservation was done via phone), but rather my telephone number pulled up my data which obviously included my name. This exhibited proper use of data collection and technology.

The check-in experience was literally refreshing. Right at the entrance I was warmly welcomed, assisted with my luggage, and treated with an Oshibori towel (hot towel) and a complimentary glass of cold fresh fruit juice; naturally squeezed without preservatives, which was not being rationed as I was allowed a second helping; The perfect welcome combo for the tired traveler.

The process of registration was seamless. Since my data was already available, all details were prefilled on the check-in printout, all that was required of me was my confirmation and signature. The availability of a variety of payment options made the whole process hassle-free. Additionally, though there were other guests being attended to, I didn’t feel ignored as enough officers were available to manage multiple guests, and officers were engaging, genuinely pleasant and very courteous.

The hotel’s security consciousness was very conspicuous and commendable. I felt assured that my safety was paramount to them. Access to the corridors leading to guest rooms was controlled by key cards. The corridors were well-lit and clutter-free with security cameras at vantage points. Also noticeable were fire prevention kits and a very legible map of the location of my room and fire assembly points behind my door. Quite different from the “tick box” maps in some hotels that are synonymous with intricate mazes.

Though the room and bathroom facilities were not new and shiny, they were very clean and reminiscent of homeliness. My room had a bright and refreshing look. I realized the garish green paint of old had been replaced with an off-white color, however, I could see remnants of the green peeking out. I guess it wasn’t leaving without a fight. The bed was well laid with a white crisp sheet and a complimentary chocolate tucked under the runner; suggestive of the strong association of the name of the hotel to the cocoa pod bean which is the main ingredient for chocolate production.

The flow of water in the bathroom was perfect. This was important to me because during my last visit, I was left in the middle of my shower with no water. I had to walk gingerly to avoid slipping on the tiles to call for water that did not flow immediately. Wi-Fi connectivity was great, the TV had a variety of channels; both local and international. Access to information about the facilities and amenities of the hotel, including activities and places worthy of visiting in Kumasi was both digital (a channel on the television) and an information booklet. Though both were very informative and comprehensive, I loved the high-quality pictures in the information booklet.

A high point for me was their towels. They were white and fluffy and did not turn dirty after a couple of wipes, it was evident they were well-laundered and not worn out. I always travel with my towel due to interesting hotel towel encounters, but this time my towel returned home unused. Still on the issue of laundry, I requested for my clothes to be ironed, and before they returned with my well-pressed clothes, they called my room to check my availability. This was quite novel for me because in other hotel encounters the return of laundry requests seemingly coincided with my shower time.

The restaurant service was great. Their buffet service had variety and very tasty food which I believe catered to all palates. Their Friday grills got me trying grilled rabbit for the first time which I relished. Waiters and waitresses were very courteous and pleasant. I was impressed with the frequency at which tables were cleared, even whilst eating, this contributed to a clutter-free and clean eating space. Also entertaining was the live all-male serenade on Friday nights at the restaurant, which I was looking forward to because I was notified by the front office during checking-in. However, considering the relatively small size of the restaurant, dialing down on the decibels will improve the experience immensely.

The only downside during my stay was loud music from a party that went beyond the stipulated time. I enjoyed the great selection of music until it turned into an endurance mission close to midnight when I was in search of peace and quiet to sleep. Prior, the hotel proactively sent notices advising guests of a wedding after-party, but they failed to enforce the time limit stipulated in the notice. Interestingly, when I called the front office to complain, their show of empathy revealed that other guests had already called to complain. As much as we are all paying guests (party guests and hotel residents), we must be given our due without demanding it.

I conclude with Michelle Obama’s quote which says “Becoming isn’t about arriving somewhere or achieving a certain aim. I see it instead as a forward motion, a means to evolving, a way to reach continuously toward a better self. The journey doesn’t end.” So, to the management of Golden Bean, your work is cut out for you. As a returning guest, my experiences are indicative of tremendous improvement. I am hopeful that your journey of being the preferred hotel in the Ashanti Region will not end, and Golden Bean Hotel will always be referred to in the present perfect continuous tense.

Kudos on the improvements.

Disclaimer: This story is not a paid review.



Continuous improvement in Customer Experience Management is not a nine-day wonder affair but a critical part of a business’ strategy for success. Consistently seeking to improve customer experience leads to resilient customer relationships, increased customer loyalty, and sustained growth. The following are elements key to continuous improvement that I identified in the Golden Bean Experience.

• Customer centricity
o Continuous improvement starts with focusing on the customer, with the primary goal of meeting and exceeding customers’ expectations consistently. Indeed, as a returning guest, my expectations were exceeded and hopefully, my next experience will not go south.
• Use of Technology and Data for Personalization
o Their use of the above created an emotional connection which made me feel valued. They leveraged technology and data collected from my first visit to personalize our engagement during reservations and check-in.
• Cross-functional Collaboration and Consistency
o Departmental collaboration across functions where all departments are acting in concert to deliver on the institution’s promise is critical to a consistent customer experience. This was evident in the quality of the sum of my experience.
• Employee Training
o Employees are key to continuous improvement as they act as the vehicle that delivers on the transformation. From my experience, it was clear that employees were well-trained, understood the vision and actively engaged in the continuous improvement endeavor.

©AhimaatheCXstoryteller, 2023