Ms. Stevens

Wendy Stevens

Executive Vice President

First Hospitality Group

In her role as executive vice president of First Hospitality Group (FHG), Wendy Stevens is responsible for developing and executing company strategy at a high level, pinpointing valuable business opportunities, and scouting out the best of the best for our workforce. Disciplined and determined in her approach, every challenge that comes across her desk is met with a sense of urgency that guarantees results.

Ms. Stevens was exposed to the world of hospitality from an early age, becoming increasingly familiar with back-of-house operations as her mother lived and worked in a hotel. Despite her varied focuses in school, ranging from political science to fashion merchandising, it was the time spent working guest services in a front office during college that ultimately shaped her career path. Ms. Stevens joined FHG in 2001. Throughout her 14 years with FHG, the accomplishment about which she is most proud is the assemblage of her team of innovative leaders. When she joined FHG, there were only 17 hotels in the portfolio and only two other sales people. Since then, FHG’s portfolio has more than tripled; departments dedicated to marketing and revenue management have been developed to offer more holistic and dedicated support, and a total sales department of three grew to a team of more than 20.

She attributes her success to the singular idea that there is nothing that you can't do; the only limits that we have, we set for ourselves. Ms. Stevens has truly seen hotels from every angle, from suburban 80-room select service hotels to 500-room downtown convention centers, giving her the knowledge and first-hand understanding necessary to excel in her collaboration with people at all levels.

Please visit http://www.fhginc.com for more information.

Ms. Stevens can be contacted at 224-257-4000 or wstevens@fhginc.com

Coming Up In The September Online Hotel Business Review




{300x250.media}
Feature Focus
Hotel Group Meetings: Blue Skies Ahead
After a decade of sacrifice and struggle, it seems that hotels and meeting planners have every reason to be optimistic about the group meeting business going forward. By every industry benchmark and measure, 2017 is shaping up to be a record year, which means more meetings in more locations for more attendees. And though no one in the industry is complaining about this rosy outlook, the strong demand is increasing competition among meeting planners across the board – for the most desirable locations, for the best hotels, for the most creative experiences, for the most talented chefs, and for the best technology available. Because of this robust demand, hotels are in the driver’s seat and they are flexing their collective muscles. Even though over 100,000 new rooms were added last year, hotel rates are expected to rise by a minimum of 4.0%, and they are also charging fees on amenities that were often gratis in the past. In addition, hotels are offering shorter lead times on booking commitments, forcing planners to sign contracts earlier than in past years. Planners are having to work more quickly and to commit farther in advance to secure key properties. Planners are also having to meet increased attendee expectations. They no longer are content with a trade show and a few dinners; they want an experience. Planners need to find ways to create a meaningful experience to ensure that attendees walk away with an impactful memory. This kind of experiential learning can generate a deeper emotional connection, which can ultimately result in increased brand recognition, client retention, and incremental sales. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group business and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.