• Hospitality Daily
  • Posts
  • How my career in tech showed me how to develop a hospitality experience people love

How my career in tech showed me how to develop a hospitality experience people love

Ken Barber, Wildhaven

If you're subscribed to Hospitality Daily, I think it's safe to say you're looking for creative ways to show hospitality.

While we admire innovation and creativity in hospitality, it's hard to find details on how to do this ourselves. That's why I've been looking forward to sharing today's story with you.

We're going to be learning from Ken Barber, the founder of Wildhaven, the top-rated glamping destination in the San Francisco Bay Area. Ken started his career as an economist before working for a variety of technology companies - all of which informs the way he approaches hospitality today.

🎧 Listen to this 4-minute episode on Apple Podcasts or Spotify

The big idea: Listening, testing, and learning from those tests is an approach that can help guide the way you innovate in providing hospitality.

  • We didn't plan to start this business. We started as a group leading hiking and camping trips. It was fun and we didn't know what we would learn.

  • Soon, people told us they need help camping. So we started testing that.

  • At first, we people told us we were charging too little and they needed more help.

  • We started Wildhaven with just 10 tents. We asked people to stay in the tents and then asked them a million questions afterward on how we could improve.

  • After a lot of listening at testing, we rolled out more tents.

  • We've kept growing in stages and making sure people are happy at every point before expanding further.

Today's challenge: How could you incorporate listening and learning into developing and refining the way you provide hospitality?