Editorial Board   

Mr. Haley

Victor P. Haley

Partner, Sutherland, Asbill & Brennan LLP

Victor P. Haley is a Partner at the Atlanta office of law firm Sutherland, Asbill & Brennan LLP. Victor practices in the hospitality, golf course and resort area. Victor regularly represents large hotel operators and hotel owners in connection with hotel acquisitions, dispositions and development throughout the Americas and the Caribbean. He has recently represented InterContinental Hotels Group in connection with its investment in the Cayo Largo Resort development in eastern Puerto Rico, its acquisition of the former Ritz-Carlton on Central Park South in New York and its acquisition of the historic Stephen F. Austin Hotel. In addition, Victor has assisted InterContinental Hotels Group in the development of new hotels and resorts in Miami, Minneapolis and Puerto Rico and has extensive experience in negotiating hotel operating agreements both for hotel owners and operators. He is a member of the Urban Land Institute and regularly speaks at legal education and industry forums on hotel acquisitions, development and operating issues.

Mr. Haley can be contacted at 404-853-8302 or victor.haley@sablaw.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.