GET TO KNOW: Miller Matola, Chief Executive Officer, Millvest
Miller is a panelist on the first day of The Hospitality Leadership Forum 2018 in the afternoon session titled Tourism and leisure: Why the destination is all about the experience. Tourists have a new perspective on what they want. It’s no longer purely just about the destination but also what they can do there to immerse in the culture. From more rustic accommodation to tasting local dishes and enjoying local cultural experiences. This session looks at the opportunities of the ‘experience economy’ and how you too can benefit.
H&R Magazine: Miller, what do you believe has been the key change in the hospitality sector over the past five years?
MM: Some of the key changes in the hospitality industry have been driven largely by technology, changing demographics and increasingly discerning and demanding consumers. These developments have together forced the industry to enhance the customer experience and strive for new and innovative ways of retaining customer brand loyalty. Responses to sustainability and more environmentally friendly products and services have also been a major shift in the sector.
H&R Magazine: Where do you see the three key challenges in the industry over the next five years?
MM: In my view, the areas which will present the industry with challenges going forward are: sustainability issues, climate change responsiveness and technology adoption in the customer experience delivery. Other critical issues which the industry has to confront are security and health issues, as well as ensuring the requisite skills for the sector.
H&R Magazine: You are a panelist at this year’s Hospitality Leadership Forum, what are you most looking forward to discussing?
MM: I am mainly looking to discuss the importance of the “experience” in the tourism and hospitality offering. I am also keen to explore how technology can be harnessed to the creation and delivery of outstanding customer experiences in the hospitality industry.
H&R Magazine: The hospitality sector is undergoing huge change. What are the three tips you would give for success in the coming five years.
MM: Players in the hospitality industry have to focus on the customer experience, the role of technology in enhancing this experiences, and lastly sustainability issues.
H&R Magazine: Are there any specific areas in the (sub-Saharan) African hospitality market that you believe are unique?
MM: There are many. The uniqueness of these experiences is inextricably linked to the service quality and authenticity of the experiences offered across various destinations on the continent. However, some geographic areas which come to mind are: Mozambique, Rwanda, Morocco, and parts of North Africa, Egypt and Morocco specifically.
H&R Magazine: Which type of people do you believe would gain the most form attending your session this year?
MM: Most people in the travel, tourism and hospitality sector will benefit from attending the session. In particular, those tasked with product development, customer service, sales and marketing as well as those involved with making strategic decisions around product development and investment.
The Hospitality Leadership Forum runs from June 24-26 2018 at The Gallagher Convention Centre, Johannesburg.
13.00pm Day 1 Tourism and leisure: Why the destination is all about the experience. Travellers no longer accept just the destination – they want to know ‘what they can do there’. It’s all about the experience, from rustic accommodation to tasting new foods and cultural experiences. This session looks at the opportunities of the ‘experience economy’ and how you can benefit.