Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Davidson

Lara Davidson

Director , The Spa at Pebble Beach

Lara Davidson, Spa Director, The Spa at Pebble Beach is a 20-year veteran of the spa industry. Ms. Davidson has implemented a myriad of spa programs and initiatives to enhance the guest's spa experience. Under her direction, The Spa at Pebble Beach has become one of California's premiere spas, most recently ranking in Conde Nast Traveler's Top 100 Resort Spas. Ms. Davidson joined The Spa at Pebble Beach in February 2001, and oversees spa operations for the 28-room facility, including managing more than 115 staff professionals. Previously, Ms. Davidson was the opening Spa Director for the Golden Door Spa at Las Casitas in Puerto Rico, as well as Operations Manager at the Spa at The Peaks in Telluride, Colo. Ms. Davidson is also co-chair for the Pebble Beach Resorts Green Team and a member on the Board of Directors for the Green Spa Network, a non-profit dedicated to greening and sustainability in the spa industry. Ms. Davidson holds a B.A. from Columbia University.

Ms. Davidson can be contacted at 831-649-7615 or davidsol@pebblebeach.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.