Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Pizzinato

Elizabeth Pizzinato

Senior Vice President, Marketing & Communications , Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts

Elizabeth Pizzinato is responsible for global digital marketing, social media, marketing communications, public relations, corporate communications and reputation management on behalf of the Four Seasons brand. With an ever-expanding portfolio of hotels in more than 35 countries, building the brand's reputation and leadership in the luxury sector through strategic marketing activities is both challenging and rewarding. “I started my career in retail operations many years ago, and gained a real appreciation for the work and attention to detail that make great customer service possible,” says Ms. Pizzinato. “Four Seasons, with its combination of quality, top talent and a passion for excellence, is a dream brand to promote, because it truly does bring the best to bear in creating memorable experiences for our guests the world over; experiences that are rooted in an exceptional service culture.” Her scope of responsibility encompasses the company's brand-level communications activities in interactive, digital, advertising, promotions, direct marketing, and the Four Seasons magazine and newsletters. Ms. Pizzinato also oversees strategic media relations outreach; crisis management; corporate social responsibility initiatives and reputation management. Ms. Pizzinato joined Four Seasons in 1999 from Hill & Knowlton Canada, where she was Vice President and Practice Leader for the Marketing Communications group. Prior to Hill & Knowlton, she was an Account Director with Strategic Objectives Inc., an award-winning consumer media relations boutique agency. Ms. Pizzinato began her marketing career managing media and employee communications for a women's wear retail chain. Ms. Pizzinato graduated from Ryerson University with a business degree in retail management. Before focusing on communications and public relations, she worked in operations as a sales trainer and sales manager in the retail sector. When she's not at the airport suffering through another security line, Ms. Pizzinato lives in Toronto with her husband. Her favourite pastimes include cooking up a storm for family and friends, reading the Sunday papers, and spending time in the garden.

Ms. Pizzinato can be contacted at 416-441-4440 or elizabeth.pizzinato@fourseasons.com

Coming up in March 2019...

Human Resources: An Era of Transition

Traditionally, the human resource department administers five key areas within a hotel operation - compliance, compensation and benefits, organizational dynamics, selection and retention, and training and development. However, HR professionals are also presently involved in culture-building activities, as well as implementing new employee on-boarding practices and engagement initiatives. As a result, HR professionals have been elevated to senior leadership status, creating value and profit within their organization. Still, they continue to face some intractable issues, including a shrinking talent pool and the need to recruit top-notch employees who are empowered to provide outstanding customer service. In order to attract top-tier talent, one option is to take advantage of recruitment opportunities offered through colleges and universities, especially if they have a hospitality major. This pool of prospective employees is likely to be better educated and more enthusiastic than walk-in hires. Also, once hired, there could be additional training and development opportunities that stem from an association with a college or university. Continuing education courses, business conferences, seminars and online instruction - all can be a valuable source of employee development opportunities. In addition to meeting recruitment demands in the present, HR professionals must also be forward-thinking, anticipating the skills that will be needed in the future to meet guest expectations. One such skill that is becoming increasingly valued is “resilience”, the ability to “go with the flow” and not become overwhelmed by the disruptive influences  of change and reinvention. In an era of transition—new technologies, expanding markets, consolidation of brands and businesses, and modifications in people's values and lifestyles - the capacity to remain flexible, nimble and resilient is a valuable skill to possess. The March Hotel Business Review will examine some of the strategies that HR professionals are employing to ensure that their hotel operations continue to thrive.