Editorial Board   

Mr. Hanks

Richard D. Hanks

Chairman and President, Mindshare Technologies

Richard D. Hanks is Chairman and President of Mindshare Technologies, the leading provider of real-time customer and employee feedback solutions. Mindshare's proprietary survey technology captures the voice of the customer in real-time and immediately transforms it into actionable intelligence through powerful and incisive enterprise reporting. Mr. Hanks has been a senior executive of several Fortune 500 companies as well as several start-up ventures. He was a corporate officer at Marriott, an executive with PepsiCo and Price Waterhouse, and CEO of Blue Step, a software start-up. Rich was named "The Leading Sales Innovator in the Lodging Industry," and Marriott's sales team was rated one of the top 25 among all companies in the U.S. for four years under his leadership. Rich also led Marriott onto the Internet, prompting Bill Gates to refer to him as an "Important Internet champion" in his book Business @ the Speed of Thought. Earlier in his career, Rich was called the "Leader of Hotel Revenue Management and Strategy" for his leadership in hotel pricing and yield management. He is also a CPA. Rich was nominated as Utah Entrepreneur of the Year in 2001, 2007, and 2008. Mr. Hanks is the author of "Delivering and Measuring Customer Service", is a frequent teacher/speaker at trade, academic and professional gatherings, and is widely quoted in top business journals and trade publications. An active participant on various boards of corporations, universities, and foundations. Mr. Hanks was a lecturer and adjunct professor at Cornell University for 10 years and on the Board of the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research. He obtained his bachelor's degree from Brigham Young University and his MBA from Northwestern University.

Mr. Hanks can be contacted at 801-263-2333 or rhanks@mshare.net

Coming up in March 2020...

Human Resources: Confronting a Labor Shortage

With the unemployment rate at its lowest level in decades (3.7%), what has always been a perennial problem for human resource professionals - labor shortage - is now reaching acute levels of concern. It is getting harder to find and recruit qualified applicants. Even finding candidates with the skills to succeed in entry-level positions has become an issue. In addition, employee turnover rates remain extremely high in the hotel industry. As a result of these problems, hotel HR managers are having to rethink their recruitment strategies in order to hire the right talent for the right job. First, hotels have been forced to raise their wages and offer other appealing perks, as a way to attract qualified candidates. Secondly, HR managers are reassessing their interviewing techniques, focusing less on the answers they receive to questions and more on observable behavior. Part of this process includes role-playing during the interview, so that the recruiter can gauge how a candidate works through specific problems and interacts with other team members. Additionally, some HR managers are also creating internal talent pools as a way to address labor shortages. Instead of utilizing department resources to find new hires with specific skills for needed positions, hotels are cultivating talent pools internally and preparing their employees to assume leadership roles whenever the time comes. They are also placing greater emphasis on a company culture that is more performance-based, as a way to curb employee turnover, increase employee satisfaction, and assure higher levels of customer service. Finally, recognizing the importance of employee retention as a way to lessen the impact of a tight labor market, some HR managers are instituting generous reward programs in order to retain their top performers. The March Hotel Business Review will explore what some HR professionals are doing to address these and other issues in their departments.