Library Archives

 
Kevin Wilhelmsen

It is no secret consumer experiences today are significantly influenced by technology. Many brands are innovating products and services to make routine activities faster, more convenient and more user-friendly. Leaders in the hospitality industry may know this better than anyone. Internet travel booking has exploded, increasing by more than 73 percent during the last five years, and 65 percent of same-day hotel reservations are now made via smartphones . Consumer reviews could be the epitome of economic Darwinism, with survival of the fittest being a reflection of an organization's ability to be nimble and closely connected to its guests. Read on...

Mark Heymann

The rise of millennials in the workforce is challenging conventional rules of employment. Driven by a desire for better work-life balance, the new majority generation is demanding greater flexibility in how and when they work. For forward-looking hoteliers, this creates an opportunity to rethink the way they schedule labor in favor of flex systems that allow them to fill shifts based on projected and actual demand while empowering their workers to structure their time to better meet personal as well as business needs. Read on...

Zoe Connolly

While the general public focuses on football, Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas, Hanukkah and a host of other traditions that occur between Thanksgiving and New Years, those in the hospitality industry know the season for something different: a dramatic uptick in travel. In fact, "uptick" may be the wrong word. "Tidal wave" may be more appropriate. While the media will inevitably report that "the day before Thanksgiving is the busiest day of the year for air travel," this ignores the aftermath of people getting off their plane at their destination. This year, according to Orbitz, more than seven in ten Americans will travel for the holidays, meaning that across the US, folks in our industry will get to fire up the "no vacancy" lights. Read on...

Mark Heymann

Tech-savvy, feedback-hungry millennials will soon represent the majority of the U.S. workforce. For the hotel industry, this will bring a fundamental shift in the way managers manage. Gone will be the days of top-down management, replaced by a flatter organization in which information flows freely and managers function as coaches, driving team results by focusing on optimizing individual performance. For the manager accustomed to holding information close to the vest, it will require a change in mindset - and that change will have to start at the top. Read on...

Carl Kish

Human and sex trafficking, otherwise known as modern day slavery, is still the fastest growing crime industry in the world. This type of exploitation in the workforce may not be at the forefront of every hotel executive's mind, but it needs to be considering hotels are the third most common venue for sex trafficking.While Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) progresses into the proverbial "business as usual" category thanks to the adoption of such legislative mandates from a number of countries, these laws do not specifically target human trafficking. These national CSR mandates can be seen as precursors to what California, and now the UK, have implemented to combat the 150 billion dollar forced labor industry. Read on...

Dawn Miller Sander

We have all been in a situation that called upon us to provide excellent guest service while our mind is distracted with other issues. Maybe our emotions are high because of the tiff we had with our spouse or we are distracted by the interdepartmental battle that is brewing or we are devastated by a loss in our personal lives. How are we to honor our commitment to excellent customer service amidst the storm of emotions battling in our mind? In this article, HotelExecutive readers will learn how to remain calm amidst any storm and maintain focus on providing the best to guests, employees, friends and family. Read on...

Joy Rothschild

Hospitality is a unique career calling with many different paths including: rooms, food & beverage, sales, finance, engineering, associate services and revenue management, to name a few. Our training programs have a successful track record of creating hospitality professionals despite a lack of industry experience. A passion to serve and a strong work ethic are key ingredients to success in our space. As the chief human resources executive of 20,000 Omni associates, it is my job to convince talent to fall in love with the hotel industry, specifically my wonderful company! Read on...

Zoe Connolly

Finding the right people to fill leadership roles in hotels, companies or facilities can provide a challenge. For hospitality companies that aren't using a recruiter to fill key roles, the following are four traits that can help hotel leaders identify the right people, along with suggested interview questions that might help to identify whether these traits are present in a candidate. After all, some people can ace an interview, but may not ultimately be a fit. Using the approach below should help you build a management team that functions efficiently, limits turnover, and most importantly, keeps guests coming back for more. Read on...

Stephen Hall

The definition of excellence is "consistently meeting right standards." The definition contains the inseparable union of quality and ethics. Aristotle suggests that there are three legs on the stool of excellence. They are ETHOS, LOGOS and PATHOS. Ethos refers to standards and logos refers we "right" standards. Pathos refers to the passion which we must have to ensure consistency. In the previous issue we discussed ethics. In this issue we will discuss the ways in which standards are created. As we begin however one point is absolutely crucial to our discussion. Read on...

Kevin Wilhelmsen

Most of us have come in contact at some point in our careers with someone we called a natural leader. It is rare and more likely that the leadership skills were built over time, but he or she makes it look easy. Employers across all industries struggle with transitioning employees into management roles. It is often the same issue many entrepreneurs face when they become business owners. They have strong industry skills, but people management may not have been a focus. A top performer who is savvy about the industry and well-received by guests likely has valuable insight for other employees, but that does not mean the individual has the tools to easily transfer that knowledge to others and hold them accountable. Read on...

Nicole Perrotta

A battle that has been raging since the origin of free trade. Which function is more important? Operations? Without a product or service, there is nothing to sell. Sales? Without sales, there would be no money to keep the doors open. How do we determine which is more important to a hotel and its brand? True sustainability requires that sales and operations work in harmony. Read on...

Michael Koethner

The key to a successful, flourishing and sustainable enterprise, in our still somehow workable and work oriented society, is to have a very open mind, an extreme empathetic view on the happenings on this planet, being able to see how well connected everything is, open to the organic development of life, and able to communicate with all available senses; and there are more than just the basic 5. Without these qualities, any business and/or personal relationship will simply not survive if any of the above points are not a given. Read on...

Bernard Ellis

While many industries are notorious for employee turnover, it is particularly painful for hospitality, where guest service is such a crucial part of the product. How painful? According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the hospitality and leisure industry had the second largest number of employees voluntarily quit their jobs in 2014, with more than 6,000 people choosing to leave their current position. One might first conclude that the recovery of the industry brought many employees new opportunities to take better offers with a competitor. After all, "once hospitality is in your blood, you don't leave," as so many in the industry like to say. Read on...

Susan Tinnish

Companies, including hotel companies, promote their focus on hiring veterans. These initiatives generate positive publicity. Yet hiring veterans is not only a goodwill gesture. It can make solid business sense - especially for the hotel industry. Veterans have the skills, training and character to meet the tough challenges of the hotel world. This article discusses how and why veterans are well-suited for the hotel industry. This article explores how hotel companies are or can support veteran hiring. Finally, I offer tips to expanding hiring of veterans — especially at an individual property. It concludes that veterans offer a wide variety of skills, values, and attributes making them well suited for the contemporary hotel environment. Read on...

Caroline Cooper

People are often referred to as a business's most valued asset and in the hotel industry more than any your team can make or break the customers' experience. They are certainly also one of your biggest overheads. Are you doing everything you can to gain their commitment to delivering outstanding customer service? Read on...

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Coming up in May 2019...

Eco-Friendly Practices: Corporate Social Responsibility

The hotel industry has undertaken a long-term effort to build more responsible and socially conscious businesses. What began with small efforts to reduce waste - such as paperless checkouts and refillable soap dispensers - has evolved into an international movement toward implementing sustainable development practices. In addition to establishing themselves as good corporate citizens, adopting eco-friendly practices is sound business for hotels. According to a recent report from Deloitte, 95% of business travelers believe the hotel industry should be undertaking “green” initiatives, and Millennials are twice as likely to support brands with strong management of environmental and social issues. Given these conclusions, hotels are continuing to innovate in the areas of environmental sustainability. For example, one leading hotel chain has designed special elevators that collect kinetic energy from the moving lift and in the process, they have reduced their energy consumption by 50%  over conventional elevators. Also, they installed an advanced air conditioning system which employs a magnetic mechanical system that makes them more energy efficient. Other hotels are installing Intelligent Building Systems which monitor and control temperatures in rooms, common areas and swimming pools, as well as ventilation and cold water systems. Some hotels are installing Electric Vehicle charging stations, planting rooftop gardens, implementing stringent recycling programs, and insisting on the use of biodegradable materials. Another trend is the creation of Green Teams within a hotel's operation that are tasked to implement earth-friendly practices and manage budgets for green projects. Some hotels have even gone so far as to curtail or eliminate room service, believing that keeping the kitchen open 24/7 isn't terribly sustainable. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.