Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Edwards

Ken Edwards

Owner and CEO, HMBookstore and Tristar Hotel Group

Ken Edwards is the Owner and CEO of HMBookstore.com and Tristar Hotel Group, where he leads strategic vision and directly oversees core business functions to ensure positive corporate performance. With over 25 years in the hotel industry developing, acquiring and providing management to properties throughout the U.S., Mr. Edwards has turned his decades of experience into innovative business initiatives leading to products and services for the hospitality industry. He speaks nationally on topics of expertise, including revenue management, cash management, multi-property management, sales and marketing, and food and beverage. While owning and operating properties, and providing training to hotel employees, Mr. Edwards recognized an unfulfilled need for effective employee training solutions in all areas of hospitality and hotel operations, for enhancing employee retention, managing costs, increasing revenue, and better customer service. As a result, he founded HMBookstore, an online Learning Management System (LMS) platform used worldwide that provides over 150 online educational training courses for hotel owners and operators, individuals pursuing a career in the hospitality industry, as well hospitality industry professionals looking to enhance their skills. Mr. Edwards received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Hotel Management from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas; a nationally recognized hospitality university. His is also a graduate from the Culinary Institute of America, continuing education in the Food and Beverage field. Throughout his career, Mr. Edwards has owned 18 hotels and has been honored with Hotel of the Year by Radisson McDowell. He is a past Board of Director for IHG Hotel Owners, and has served on IHG Brand Committees as Direct Sales Committee-Chairman, Holiday Inn Committee and IHG Frequent Travel Committee-Priority Club. Please visit http://www.hmbookstore.com/ for more information.

Mr. Edwards can be contacted at 602-453-9901 or keunlv@aol.com

Coming up in April 2018...

Guest Service: Empowering People

Excellent customer service is vitally important in all businesses but it is especially important for hotels where customer service is the lifeblood of the business. Outstanding customer service is essential in creating new customers, retaining existing customers, and cultivating referrals for future customers. Employees who meet and exceed guest expectations are critical to a hotel's success, and it begins with the hiring process. It is imperative for HR personnel to screen for and hire people who inherently possess customer-friendly traits - empathy, warmth and conscientiousness - which allow them to serve guests naturally and authentically. Trait-based hiring means considering more than just a candidate's technical skills and background; it means looking for and selecting employees who naturally desire to take care of people, who derive satisfaction and pleasure from fulfilling guests' needs, and who don't consider customer service to be a chore. Without the presence of these specific traits and attributes, it is difficult for an employee to provide genuine hospitality. Once that kind of employee has been hired, it is necessary to empower them. Some forward-thinking hotels empower their employees to proactively fix customer problems without having to wait for management approval. This employee empowerment—the permission to be creative, and even having the authority to spend money on a customer's behalf - is a resourceful way to resolve guest problems quickly and efficiently. When management places their faith in an employee's good judgment, it inspires a sense of trust and provides a sense of higher purpose beyond a simple paycheck. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate and manage guest satisfaction in their operations.