Editorial Board   

Mr. Schirmer

Cary Tyler Schirmer

Chief Executive Officer, The Higgins Group

Cary Schirmer brings more than 20 years of professional construction, development and hospitality management experience to his position as Chief Executive Officer of The Higgins Group (THG). He is responsible for the long-term strategic planning of the firm and oversees operations for both the Higgins Purchasing Group and Boxport. Mr. Schirmer forges successful partners with clients' operations and management teams through carefully orchestrated contract negotiations, legal issues, accounting systems and technologies. As a champion for customer satisfaction, Mr. Schirmer is committed to educating THG clients on evolving supply chain issues and helping them improve daily operations with more efficient methods for budgeting, purchasing, and reporting. He also works closely with his team to promote growth and enhance the mission of THG within the industry. Before his promotion to CEO, Mr. Schirmer spent nine years as president of both organizations. Prior to joining THG, Mr. Schirmer oversaw construction management and various capital asset programs for Fairmont Hotel Management, based in San Francisco. He also managed the renovations of properties located in New Orleans, Dallas, San Jose and San Francisco. Before Fairmont Hotel Management, Mr. Schirmer was with Swinerton and Walberg Company, a general building contractor where he progressed from Project Scheduler to Project Engineer and then to Project Manager. He has also supervised design and construction in various roles at C&N Builders and Gino & Huffman Construction. Mr. Schirmer is a graduate of the University of California at Santa Barbara. He resides in Lafayette, California with his wife Stacy and three children.

Mr. Schirmer can be contacted at 415-772-1600 or cschirmer@higginspurchasing.com

Coming up in April 2020...

Guest Service: First Impressions Matter

Hotels spend large amounts of money on marketing their operation and brand, but sometimes they fail to remember that guest service is the lifeblood of their business. It is outstanding guest service that allows a hotel to create an amazing and lasting impression, one that will remain with guests far beyond the duration of their stay. In pre-internet days, first impressions were formed the moment a guest walked through a hotel's front door. These days, first impressions are created long before a guest arrives at a hotel property. They begin when a customer visits a hotel's website or social media pages for the first time. When a guest connects with a property online, they immediately form an opinion of the hotel. First impressions matter and because of that, a hotel website should be mobile-friendly with blistering fast speed; it should be graphically appealing; and it should provide visual representation of the kind of experience a guest can expect. It is also vital to engage the customer; to actively solicit and respond to guest feedback. When a hotel personally engages with someone, it is demonstrating to other customers that guest opinions matter, and that management is willing to go the extra mile to provide superior guest service. Similarly, when a hotel sends out personalized emails with satisfaction surveys attached, it demonstrates that management values guest feedback, so that service can be improved at every level. Additionally, social media messages can be sent out prior to a guest's arrival to learn more about them, so their visit can be personalized. It's the small touches and details that are most remembered and appreciated. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will examine what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate excellent guest service in their operations.