Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Houran

James Houran

Managing Director, AETHOS Consulting Group

"Dr. Jim" Houran, Ph.D., Managing Director of AETHOS Consulting Group, is a 25-year veteran in applied psychological research and a published expert on peak performance, online testing and interpersonal and organizational compatibility.

Dr. Houran has authored over 150 articles, and his award-winning work has been profiled by a myriad of media outlets and programs including the Discovery Channel, A&E, BBC, National Geographic, NBC's Today Show, USA Today, New Scientist, Psychology Today and Forbes.com.

Dr. Houran serves as adjunct faculty at the Laboratory for Statistics and Computation, ISLA - Instituto Politecnico de Gestão e Tecnologia (Lisbon, Portugal), an editorial board member for the APA peer-reviewed journal, Psychology of Consciousness: Theory, Research and Practice, and as an editorial board member for the peer-reviewed journal, Cornell Hospitality Quarterly.

AETHOS Consulting Group is a global hospitality advisory firm serving the hotel, restaurant, casino, cruise line, club and travel technology sectors. Core competencies include executive search, compensation consulting, organizational development and psychometric assessments. Through strategic joint-ventures, AETHOS further assists its clients in gaining access to expert advice and specialist services in the area of logistics and supply chain management as well as insurance solutions.

Many people over the years have told Dr. Houran that he is best described as an unconventional researcher and practitioner who's clearly passionate about bringing real-world psychology to the everyday personal and professional lives of clients. This is possible because of his eclectic and generalist background in the social sciences, which gives him a comprehensive perspective about imagination, cognition, personality and behavior.

For Dr. Houran, nothing compares to the satisfaction of working on projects in which the latest psychological theories help to produce unprecedented awareness and positive outcomes. The fluid and demanding industry of hospitality is ultimately built on people and relationships. Psychology has so much to say about the drivers of professional development, team dynamics, organizational performance and the guest experience.

Dr. Houran is in his element when consulting with leaders and their teams on these strategic issues. But psychology doesn't define his entire identity; he stays personally grounded through his family and enjoying the natural sciences, history, anthropology and the arts. It's fun and rewarding being unconventional!

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

Mr. Houran can be contacted at +1 817-542-7602 or jhouran@aethoscg.com

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.