Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Fawell

Richard Fawell

Design & Managing Principal, VOA Associates Incorporated

Rick Fawell, AIA, NCARB, IIDA, is currently Design and Managing Principal of the two VOA offices in China and has been designing and planning Hotel, Resort and Residential projects over the past 35 years across the United States and currently in China and Southeast Asia. Mr. Fawell has studied, worked and lived in Paris, France and Helsinki, Finland as well as Boston and Chicago in the United States and since 2009 has resided in Beijing. The Beijing and Shanghai offices of VOA are responsible not only for the hospitality work in China but also currently in South Korea, Vietnam and Cambodia. VOA is also in the midst of large resort master-planning projects throughout Asia. Mr. Fawell has been with VOA as a Principal for the past 19 years, the past seven years predominantly in Asia. VOA is currently in various stages of design and construction on new luxury hotels, residential projects, and resorts throughout China and the rest of Asia.

Mr. Fawell can be contacted at 312-453-7554 or rfawell@voa.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.