Casinos Can Take Steps to Create Effective Managers and Supervisors, Says Robinson & Associates, Inc.

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New or old, large or small, tribal or corporate - many casinos wish they had stronger, more effective managers and supervisors, and there are ways to make that happen.

New or old, large or small, tribal or corporate - many casinos wish they had stronger, more effective managers and supervisors, and there are ways to make that happen, says Annapolis, Maryland-based Robinson and Associates, Inc.    

"Casinos simply cannot compete in the brutal gaming industry if their operations are not up to par," says Martin R. Baird, chief executive officer of Annapolis, Maryland-based Robinson & Associates. "Many casino executives want to know how they can get their managers and supervisors to do what they've been hired to do - manage and supervise."

Baird offers the following five suggestions for creating a strong management team.

Develop Scientifically Proven Screening and Hiring Process. Pre-hire assessments are scientifically proven and well worth the effort, according to Baird. "For example, you can pick up on personal issues before the prospective hire signs on the dotted line," Baird says. "These assessments help create a multidimensional picture of the candidate. This allows the casino's human resources department to make decisions based on real information, not just a smile and the patented interview phrase of 'I'm customer service focused.'"

In addition to identifying issues, assessments help HR create profiles of the characteristics that make up the casino's top performers in any specific department, Baird says. "After all, a great beverage server could be a much different person than your best cage worker," Baird notes.

Stop Hiring from Within. If casinos only look within their organization, they are promoting people who don't necessarily have the skills and training required to be effective managers and supervisors, Baird says. "This weakens your casino," Baird says. "Promoting from within can improve morale, but only if the people are qualified. It isn't good enough if you promote people simply because they show up for work or never get reprimanded. A good beverage server should not automatically be asked to manage a bar. What makes them a great server could be the kiss of death in a management role."

Help Employees Improve Themselves. Casinos can promote from within but only if they improve the people they have so that employees will be ready if and when the opportunity comes their way, Baird notes. "Many casino supervisors and managers are not the world's best," Baird says. "They often don't even understand the basics of supervision, let alone management. You need to give them training so they can learn the skills they need to succeed."

Manage the New Managers. Many casinos put a new manager or supervisor out to pasture immediately after they receive their promotion, Baird says. "Their former boss now assumes that, as a manager, they no longer need to be managed," Baird explains. "Nothing could be further from the truth. New managers and supervisors need special care and attention. Support your newbies early and often. Now is the time to nurture them and help them grow. They are part of your critical front-line team, so don't wait until they make a big mistake."

Listen to Employees. Casino executives need to know what's going on with their managers and supervisors, according to Baird. "The front-line team knows which managers are good," Baird says. "They know which ones just yell. They know which ones are often late because they are now a 'manager.' You need to have your employees risk their reputation and share the truth about the people they work for."

Robinson & Associates, Inc., is a global customer service consulting firm for the gaming industry. It helps casinos determine their Advocate Index, a number that indicates the extent to which properties have guests who are willing to be advocates. The company then implements its Advocate Development System in combination with the proven methodology of Advocate Index and best business practices to help casinos create more guest advocates and chart a course for growth and profitability. Robinson & Associates may be reached by phone at 480-991-6420, by e-mail at or via its Web sites at and

Robinson & Associates is a member of the Casino Management Association and an associate member of the National Indian Gaming Association.

Martin R. Baird
Robinson & Associates, Inc.


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