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Lodging Leaders

Updated 6 days ago

Business
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Lodging Leaders is a top ranked weekly podcast that examines news and topics trending in the hospitality industry, shared through engaging stories told by co-hosts Jon Albano and Judy Maxwell, and amplified by interviews with experts and other thought leaders.

Read more

Lodging Leaders is a top ranked weekly podcast that examines news and topics trending in the hospitality industry, shared through engaging stories told by co-hosts Jon Albano and Judy Maxwell, and amplified by interviews with experts and other thought leaders.

iTunes Ratings

46 Ratings
Average Ratings
43
1
1
0
1

Insider Info for Hoteliers and PR peeps

By Grimaldi PR - Nov 07 2018
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I have been listening to the podcast for a while and have gotten solid insider information for the hoteliers my PR firm works with. Jon is a delight, and his guests bring a wealth of insight. I highly recommend it not only for hoteliers, but for PR and marketing people like me as well! ~ Jody Grimaldi Grimaldi Public Relations

Great insights for leaders

By kbarrett3 - Aug 30 2017
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Thank you for leading our conversation Jon. I love your passion for helping leaders in all industries succeed. Your wealth of knowedge in the hospitality industry brings a very relevant approach to our topic of attracting and retaiing talent. Great insights and pratical perspectives.

iTunes Ratings

46 Ratings
Average Ratings
43
1
1
0
1

Insider Info for Hoteliers and PR peeps

By Grimaldi PR - Nov 07 2018
Read more
I have been listening to the podcast for a while and have gotten solid insider information for the hoteliers my PR firm works with. Jon is a delight, and his guests bring a wealth of insight. I highly recommend it not only for hoteliers, but for PR and marketing people like me as well! ~ Jody Grimaldi Grimaldi Public Relations

Great insights for leaders

By kbarrett3 - Aug 30 2017
Read more
Thank you for leading our conversation Jon. I love your passion for helping leaders in all industries succeed. Your wealth of knowedge in the hospitality industry brings a very relevant approach to our topic of attracting and retaiing talent. Great insights and pratical perspectives.

Listen to:

Cover image of Lodging Leaders

Lodging Leaders

Updated 6 days ago

Read more

Lodging Leaders is a top ranked weekly podcast that examines news and topics trending in the hospitality industry, shared through engaging stories told by co-hosts Jon Albano and Judy Maxwell, and amplified by interviews with experts and other thought leaders.

209 | American Tales: Hotel industry execs tell all

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“These stories can only be told by us.”

Those words are written by Bharat Shah, an American hotelier and an immigrant from India, in his autobiography “America My Destiny.”

Bharat’s son, Mit, is founder and CEO of Noble Investment Group, which has $3 billion of private equity invested in hotels throughout the country.

Together, father and son decided to share Bharat Shah’s story with the world. They did that in 2014, in front of a packed auditorium in the Rialto Theater on the campus of Georgia State University in Atlanta.

Since then, The Bharat Shah Leadership Speaker Series has grown into an endeavor that has introduced thousands of aspiring leaders to top executives in the U.S. hospitality industry: Chris Nassetta, Arne Sorenson, Tom Baltimore, Mark Elliott, and Mark Hoplamazian.

Mit shares the beginning of his storytelling journey and what he’s learned about business, leadership and himself while prepping for and conducting the interviews. We also feature segments of the recorded interviews with all of the guests.

Featured in today’s episode are …

  • Mit Shah, founder and CEO of Noble Investment Group
  • Bharat Shah, founder of the Bharat Shah Leadership Speaker Series
  • Debby Cannon, director of the Cecil B. Day School of Hospitality and Administration at the Robinson School of Business at Georgia State University
  • Arne Sorenson, CEO of Marriott Hotels
  • Tom Baltimore, chairman, president and CEO of Parks Hotels & Resorts
  • Mark Elliott, president of Hodges Ward Elliott
  • Mark Hoplamazian, president and CEO of Hyatt Hotels

To view the first five installments of the speaker series, visit:

Apr 17 2019

1hr 12mins

Play

182 | Create a Meaning Statement and Share It ALL the Time with Jeffrey Davidson

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Jeffrey Davidson is engaging, thought-provoking, and sometimes gets so excited you think he forgot to breathe. Jeffrey has been exploring the boundaries of world-class teams for over 20 years. As a recognized expert in strengthening leaders and building teams, he has worked with 100s of teams, taught thousands, and consulted with multiple Fortune 100 corporations.

A dynamic presenter, Jeffrey speaks at conferences across the United States and Canada, and audiences love his interactive, high-energy talks because they include humor and real-life stories of success … and his many brushes with failure.

Jeffrey’s goal is simple, he wants you to be outstanding … and he wants your team to be even better.

In This Episode, Jeffrey Reveals …

  • The UNASKED questions every employee needs answered … things like:
    • Does this job have meaning and what is it?
    • How do we know we’re working on the right stuff?
    • What’s your definition of success?
  • The first thing a busy manager should do to turn their team from MEH to STAND-OUT … it’s about creating and sharing a meaning statement.
  • How to connect with your team, outside of an annual performance review, in a clear, positive manner – where you constructively share with them what they can build upon, and where they can refocus.
  • How creating a culture where your team asks for feedback from other teammates and their boss on a weekly basis makes them more receptive to it.

Resources & Links

Jeffrey Davidson

Leading Great Teams

  • Website
  • Twitter
  • Email: events@GreatTeamsLtd.com
  • Phone: (972) 965-1830
  • Address:
    2628 Rolling Mdw
    Carrollton, TX 75010

Oct 03 2018

42mins

Play

192 | A Life Improving Customer Experience with Alex Shashou

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Alex Shashou is the Co-Founder and President of ALICE, a top-ranking staff Task Management & Collaboration platform with a global customer base of 2,000+ hotels.

Born and raised in London, Alex grew up in the hospitality industry, and he’s become a sought-after hospitality thought leader, speaking on technology and innovation in hospitality at conferences around the world. In 2016, Alex was awarded the HFTP President’s Award, which recognizes a person who has made a significant contribution to the hospitality industry and in 2018, he received the Hotel Experience Next Generation Leader Award.

Alex earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School of Business.

In This Episode, Alex reveals …

  • The ALICE platform, what it is, how it works, the vision behind it, and the problem they’re solving.
  • How hospitality can be defined or measured in hotels today, and the most common challenges hotels face in delivering value for their guests.
  • How can hotels improve how they service guests in the future, and Alex reveals what he would focus on as a hotel owner/operator.
  • How hotels can be more than just a place to stay for guests, and what can they do to actually make the stay more meaningful.

Resources & Links

Alex Shashou

ALICE

Dec 12 2018

34mins

Play

200 | Excellence Wins with Horst Schulze

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Horst Schulze is Founder, Chairman and CEO of the Capella Hotel Group, and Co-founder & Former COO of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Co. Schulze is a legendary leader and global titan of business and the author of Excellence Wins: A No-Nonsense Guide to Becoming the Best in a World of Compromise (Zondervan/HarperCollins). His visionary and disruptive principles have reshaped the concepts of excellence, service, and competitive advantage, transcending divisions of industry across the business landscape.

In 2002, Schulze founded a second company, The Capella Hotel Group, raising the bar set at the Ritz-Carlton even higher to pioneer the first “ultraluxury” guest experience. Schulze is a highly sought after keynote speaker for numerous global businesses and organizations. He and his wife, Sheri, live in Atlanta, Georgia.

In This Episode, Horst reveals …

  • The history of Ritz Carlton, from the first hotel built in the late nineteenth century, to the formation of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, LLC in 1983.
  • The powerful vision behind the iconic phrase “Ladies and Gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen”, a phrase Horst penned in an essay he wrote as a teenager.
  • The grander view customer service, whose role it is, and why it determines success.
  • His new book, Excellence Wins: A No-Nonsense Guide to Becoming the Best in a World of Compromise.

Resources & Links

Horst Schulze

  • (404) 842-7280

Capella Hotel Group

Feb 13 2019

35mins

Play

107 | 15 Successful Habits of an Awesome General Manager with Rupesh Patel

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Rupesh is the CEO of 3Hospitality and SmartGuests.com, and he operates award winning hotels in the Daytona Beach area. Known for his out of the box, innovative thinking, Rupesh has incorporated his marketing and design background into hospitality industry to deliver simple ideas that bring smiles to guest’s faces and drive revenues for his hotels.

In This Episode, Rupesh Reveals 15 Successful Habits of an Awesome General Manager, including:

  1. Listen to your staff
  2. Share your knowledge
  3. Collaborate
  4. Dedicate 30 minutes each day to reading industry news
  5. Ask for help
  6. Don’t pretend that you know everything
  7. Motivate people
  8. Welcome criticism
  9. Get to know your staff on a more personal level
  10. Give credit where credit is due
  11. Don’t micromanage
  12. Keep the interest of the hotel in mind
  13. Project a service-oriented attitude
  14. Embrace change, and
  15. Be a great communicator

Resources & Links

Mentioned in this Episode

Rupesh Patel

  • Email: rupesh@smartguests.com
  • LinkedIn

SmartGuests.com

Apr 12 2017

49mins

Play

157 | Experiential, Boutique Hotel, Restaurant and Nightlife Brands with Jared Galbut

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Jared Galbut serves as Managing Principal of Menin Hospitality, the Miami-based company known for its experiential, boutique hotel, restaurant and nightlife brands, including Mondrian South Beach, Bodega Taqueria y Tequila and The Gale Hotel.

A Miami native, Galbut discovered his passion for the hospitality industry as a teen, working for his uncle at Crescent Heights one of the nation’s largest developers of highrises, multifamily housing and hotels. After gaining a deep understanding of the industry, Galbut acquired the Raffaello Chicago and relocated to Illinois to develop the hotel.

While maintaining success of this new venture – a hotel that is still part of Menin Hospitality’s portfolio – Galbut sought out further opportunities to take him home to Miami Beach and founded Menin Hospitality with another emerging hotelier, his cousin Keith Menin.

Galbut serves as the President of the Miami Beach Tax Payers Association, is a Board of Directors Member for the Greater Miami Hospitality Association and is a Member of the Miami Beach Convention Center Advisory Board.

In This Episode, Jared Reveals:

  • The vision behind Menin Hospitality, and how the company evolved since it was formed back in 2005.
  • What their journey was like, from their first unconventional management contract, to their current collection of 15 unique hotel, restaurant and nightlife venues.
  • Some of the challenges they have faced along the way.

Resources & Links

Jared Galbut

Menin Hospitality

3050 Biscayne Boulevard Penthouse 1
Miami, FL 33137
(305) 704-3615

Apr 04 2018

26mins

Play

004 | Take Responsibility and Own It with Paul Darrow

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Paul Darrow is the founder and president of PHD Financial – a boutique investment banking firm specializing in hospitality finance, debt restructure, consulting services, funding acquisition and financial advisory. He’s also a former hotel owner with a strong understanding of hotel operations.

Paul began his career in the hotel/consulting/finance world back in 1983, and his early experiences took place in Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts and St. Johns in the Virgin Islands. Paul has also been part of the debt restructure process since 2008, and he has found helping hoteliers to save their properties and/or be more profitable to be a very rewarding experience for him.

Paul’s Transition to Hotel Owner and Finance Expert

Paul’s transition occurred while he was working in an unrelated field. At the time, he owned a court reporting agency and supplied that personnel to governmental agencies and law firms. While vacationing on Martha’s Vineyard, he met the owners of a hotel property and learned they wanted to retire. He admits he wasn’t enthusiastic about it at first, but eventually decided to purchase the property. They had about 20 buildings- all of which needed renovations. There was also a restaurant in it which was very popular. Paul decided to get a hotel restaurant management’s degree as well. He owned this for about 20 years and it provided him a very rich experience. It also lead him to meet a key individual from the finance world. All these elements allowed for an easy transition to go from operations to finance.

A common line you hear from hoteliers all the time is that they are: “Asset rich and cash poor.” How can hoteliers increase their cash flow?

Paul says all hoteliers should make sure they do the following 3 things before going into business:

  1. Legally set yourself up to protect assets. Most hoteliers set up an LLC, but fail to do the annual things that need to be done, such as organizational minutes and having their annual stock hold meetings. Failing to do these things puts you in a position of potentially losing the protection of your LLC. Ensure everything is up to date. Not quarterly- or yearly.
  2. Keep proper books and records! This is the biggest flaw hoteliers have. A daily cash report needs to be made so every dollar is accounted for. Numbers never lie. Neglecting this can lead to devaluing your property. Keeping up with your books gives you a clear representation of the value of your property, which allows you to then maximize its value.
  3. Excellent Management: requires an excellent business plan! This directs you on a day to day basis on how to go about directing your business. Also, hiring the right staff is imperative! Who are your front desk employees? Remember that the people at the front desk are the first line of “defense.”

Find yourself a good accountant and lawyer and run your business. Not doing so is simply foolish! You can’t own a property for free. You borrowed money to get it and it’s the bank’s expectation that you will pay back what you borrowed. This is also important so that you have support in understanding the legalities stated in documentation. The text in these documents is not easily understood – it’s critical to have someone that can represent you and who can decode these things.

Keep in mind that banks can see your financial progress. They have a plan that can potentially leave you impotent if you don’t have the right things in place. I.e- a good lawyer and a good accountant, keeping a daily report of records, and great management. As the banks track your progress, they can detect how you are doing and if it comes down to foreclosure, there is no one who can defend you. This is how hoteliers lose their properties. Don’t wait until the last minute to take action! Stay on your game and be prepared.

Paul finds entrepreneurs to be amazing people.  What separates them from the rest is they recover from failure quickly, and they are just as enthusiastic about the next thing, not looking back, but really moving forward to be successful. It is tremendous character!

PhD Financial has expanded…

As the economy started to stabilize- Paul learned that hoteliers needed to do a lot more than just straighten out their debt. They also started looking at those items mentioned earlier in the shownotes (see above “3 things before going into business”) and taking it seriously. Paul’s firm helps people get organized in these areas. Find out more about their services here: http://phdfinancialllc.com/services

Resources & Links

Apr 30 2015

46mins

Play

234 | More for the Money: Upselling generates significant revenue gains for hotels

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Though average daily rate in U.S. hotels continues to grow year over year, hotel operators are not so eager to increase room prices these days.

STR and Oxford Economics forecast ADR will increase by 1.9 percent this year and 2.2 percent in 2020.

While an increase is usually viewed as a positive, the joy is muted in the hotel industry. STR noted in August that inflation coupled with increasing room supply are outpacing the rise in hotel revenue.

Hotel operators are experiencing what STR calls “an absence of pricing confidence.”

So, you don’t want to increase your room rate but you need to make more money.

How do you do that? You upsell. You offer additional products and services to guests who have already booked at your property.

Think you do not have anything to offer besides a clean room and free breakfast? Think again. Generating extra revenue by upselling is possible no matter the location, type and size of your hotel.

In today’s episode Lodging Leaders talks to experts in upselling in the hospitality industry.

You’ll hear from Geoffrey Toffetti, president and chief marketing officer of Frontline Performance Group, and Jason Bryant, founder and CEO of Nor1.

They talk about the art and science of selling upgrades and when to engage the guest with offers. And they give tips on ways to increase incremental revenue that goes straight to your bottom line.

Oct 23 2019

31mins

Play

054 | Creating Rewarding Relationships with Guests, Staff and Industry Professionals with Rocco Bova

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Rocco Bova is a passionate hotelier and an energetic entrepreneur with a remarkable career of nearly 20 years. He studied hotel management at Westminster College in London and Cornell University in Singapore, and he has worked in some of the finest, world class properties in amazing destinations spanning three continents. He’s led pre-opening, rebranding, and repositioning projects, and he’s recognized as a turnaround expert.

In This Episode, Rocco Talks About:

  • Customer service and how to evaluate the service levels of your teams.
  • Finding and retaining good people, and creating an empowered, engaged workforce.
  • Growing a career in hospitality, and Rocco provides tips for young hoteliers looking for a job and how to stand out.
  • The growth of the brands and their impact on the global hotel scene.
  • Technology, the Internet of things, and the guest.
  • LinkedIn, how to improve your profile, and how Rocco managed to grow his network to nearly 20,000 followers.

Rocco’s enthusiasm for this industry is infectious, and he understands how to create rewarding relationships – with the guest, with his staff, with the owners, and with other industry professionals.

Resources & Links

Apr 07 2016

38mins

Play

191 | Financing for New Hotel Development with Malcolm Davies

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Malcolm Davies is Principal/Managing Director of George Smith Parners, a leading, national provider of capital market services to the commercial real estate industry. Malcolm has over 20 years of experience as an award-winning capital advisor and developer, having advised and been involved with nearly $3B worth of financings, both in the equity and debt markets.

In This Episode, Malcolm reveals …

  • The basics of financing for new hotel development, and some rookie mistakes to avoid.
  • The types of hotels lenders and investors are looking to be involved in, and why.
  • Which cities and locations are most desirable for lenders and investors now, and who some of the major financing players are in the market.
  • How to set realistic revenue projections so that your property can withstand a significant dip for an extended period of time.

Resources & Links

Malcolm Davies

  • LinkedIn
  • Email: mdavies@gspartners.com

George Smith Partners

Dec 05 2018

33mins

Play

015 | Online Hospitality Training, eBooks and Best Practices with HMBookstore.com COO Rick Tomljenovic

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Rick Tomljenovic has been in the hospitality industry for more than 35 years. He’s an owner and Chief Operating Officer of Tristar Hotel Management, a midsize company managing between 15-25 properties on average per year, including 5 properties that they own.

Rick is also Chief Operating Officer for HMBookstore.com – a cutting edge online hospitality and tourism training company with more than 70 eBooks published. HMBookstore’s eBooks have been adopted by professors at top U.S. hospitality universities, and over 13,000 eBooks have been sold to university students since 2012.

After high school, Rick attended Forrest Park College and earned a hospitality degree. He worked for several midscale and largescale management companies, and spent a lot of time working for Holiday Inn managing several of their properties in the Chicago/Midwest region.

Early on, Rick had the pleasure of working with the Holiday Inn training program and he was enamored by the experience. Those early examples of great training programs and materials planted the seed of what would later evolve into HMBookstore.com.

Resources & Links

Rick Tomljenovic

Company Websites & Pages

Jul 16 2015

42mins

Play

163 | 14 Ways to Boost Hotel Revenue and Profits with Rob Russell

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Robert Russell has been an innovative leader in digital, social and mobile marketing for over 20 years. He has worked with major global brands and smaller companies in almost every aspect of digital marketing and e-commerce, including reservation and transaction software, mobile applications, social media marketing, search engine optimization, email marketing, and website user experience. His clients and leadership roles have included Hotels, Retailers, and Restaurant chains across the US, Caribbean and Latin America. He has been a featured speaker at leading hospitality technology conferences, such as HITEC, and written articles for many industry publications. He has recently published The Hotel Handbook For Online Revenue. Robert currently advises dozens of large and small hotels as President of Resort Income Optimization.

In This Episode, Rob Reveals …

14 ways to boost revenue and profits, including:

  1. Direct bookings may cost more than OTAs
  2. Deposits and cancellation policies may be scaring your customers away
  3. Discounting doesn’t have to mean lower revenue
  4. You get better promo results with “unique” offers for targeted groups
  5. High occupancy can signal a problem (prices are too low)
  6. Value-Add promos can be more profitable
  7. Your Facebook Followers are probably not seeing your posts (you have to pay)
  8. Email Marketing is still a killer app (and you own it)
  9. Content Marketing can be automated with software
  10. Google Maps is separate from Google
  11. You can place your direct booking engine on TripAdvisor, Google, Facebook, and other places
  12. Airbnb can be your friend
  13. Education is now in snack sizes – and perhaps better
  14. Revenue Management can be done remotely

Rob prepared a free 17 page guide for the listeners called Revenue Is Oxygen: Online Channel Management for Boutique Resorts

If you are struggling to understand how to combine channels, software, websites, clouds and services, then Rob’s Revenue is Oxygen guide is a great place to start.

Download the FREE guide: Revenue Is Oxygen

Online Channel Management for Boutique Resorts

Resources & Links

Rob Russell

Resort Income Optimization

May 16 2018

44mins

Play

003 | Great Leadership Stems from the Heart with Nancy Johnson

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Nancy Johnson’s career in hospitality spans more than 40 years, the last 25 of which were in executive roles with Carlson that include heading up the brands Country Inn & Suites and Radisson Hotels International.  Nancy served as Chair of the American Hotel and Lodging Association (AHLA) in 2012, and initiated AH&LA’s Women in Lodging Council. Nancy is recognized by many as a spokesperson for the industry, she has participated in a variety of speaking engagements, panels, and leadership programs internationally.

Nancy practically grew up in the hotel industry. By the age of 21, she was married and divorced with two small children. Since her top priority was being home with her children during the day, she took a night job as a cocktail waitress at a full service hotel. She knew she could make more money as a bartender, but the owner of the hotel told her “women don’t bartend,” so she made the tough choice to leave the hotel and started bartending at an independent bar.  Within a month, the owner of the hotel realized he was losing business, so he offered her a bartending position. She was eventually promoted to front desk clerk, then Banquet Manager, and finally assistant General Manager.  This was Nancy’s first leadership experience.

Nancy then worked for a construction company as a hotel specialist and stayed on through the construction of 48 new hotels. This position provided a lot of great opportunities for her, and she continued to hone her skills by taking blueprint, marketing, and real estate courses. Nancy worked for McDonalds and learned planned unit development. This lead her to become involved in local government. What Nancy loves about this industry is that there have always been many choices. However, the bottom line is always to be of SERVICE.

Resources & Links

Apr 30 2015

42mins

Play

039 | How to Create a Memorable Guest Experience with Tom Conran

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Tom Conran serves as a Principal of Greenwood Hospitality Group – a Colorado-based company focused on the acquisition, repositioning, and management of upscale, full-service and select-service hotels. Formed in 2009, Greenwood Hospitality Group has grown their portfolio to 15 properties under management in 10 states.

Last year, Hotel Business ranked Greenwood Hospitality Group #60 in their Top 100 Management Companies of 2014 report.

Tom’s role with Greenwood is to grow the group via strategic investments and third-party hotel management assignments. An industry veteran, Tom has more than 30 years of hospitality experience in the management, finance, and real estate sectors.

Prior to his current role, Tom served as Vice President of Business Development for Richfield Hospitality. Tom expanded the Richfield management platform to include hospitality investments and acquisitions. During his 25 years with Richfield and its predecessor companies, Tom held several key positions including sales and marketing and property manager assignments. In addition, he was responsible for property management transitions and client relations within the management portfolio.

From 1997 to 2000, Tom also served as Vice President of Acquisitions for Regal Hotels International and successfully closed on $300 million of hotel acquisitions, including the Bostonian Hotel, the UN Plaza Hotel New York, the Knickerbocker Chicago, and the Los Angeles Biltmore Hotel. Thereafter, Tom served as Vice President of Acquisitions and Finance for Millennium Hotels, USA with active involvement in the group’s investment strategies and renovation programs for their portfolio of 13 upscale full-service hotels.

Tom earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Keene State College in Keene, New Hampshire. Tom was a founding member of Meetings Planner International in Hartford, CT and he currently serves on the Owners’ Advisory Board of Doubletree Hotels.

In This Episode, Tom Talks About:

  • Stretching the guest experience to include the unexpected.
  • Creating an experiential environment, from cultural buy-in to heightened guest engagement.
  • Establishing a training regime for his staff, which they refer to as their ambassadors, and providing them with the tools and support to perform at the highest level.
  • Establishing a service recovery protocol, and making it personal.
  • Genuine interaction with the guest – utilizing guest information, history, and leading questions when taking the reservation, at check-in, in the restaurant or meeting space, and throughout their stay.
  • Creating an environment of community, and he shares some actionable ways hotels and restaurants can do that to promote social interaction.
  • Food & Beverage, positioning your restaurants as if they were free standing, how F&B can greatly assist in creating a distinctive and relevant difference, and the importance of making sure it supports the overall positioning statement.

Resources & Links

Tom Conran

Greenwood Hospitality Group

5445 DTC Parkway, Penthouse Four
Greenwood Village, CO 80111
Phone (720) 310-2029
Fax (720) 210-5642

Jan 07 2016

37mins

Play

005 | What Makes a Leader with John Hogan

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John J. Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO is a career business professional and educator who has held senior leadership with responsibility in several organizations involving operational, academic and entrepreneurial enterprise. He has demonstrated competencies as a strong leader, relationship builder, problem solver and mentor and is frequently invited to speak at franchise meetings, management company and hospitality association industry events. He also acts as an expert witness in both research and testimony in hospitality industry related cases.

John has been a part of the hospitality industry his entire adult life. He started out as a teenager at a seasonal summer resort in Vermont and shares that his emotion towards the spirit of hospitality was very profound from the beginning. John studied hospitality at University of Massachusetts and over the last 40 years has worked with companies of all sizes ranging from smaller family owned large to large independents, to niched, to corporate and franchises. He feels it is an exciting, never boring, always changing industry.

Resources & Links:

May 07 2015

33mins

Play

233 | How Does Your Hotel Rate? Smart pricing strategies key to winning in a downturn

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It’s often said the U.S. hotel industry is a street-corner business. With that point of view, it may not take much for a hotel operator to panic and set off a price war on your block.

The industry fell victim to mindless discounting in the days immediately after 9/11 and during the depth of the Great Recession.

Today’s hotel owners and operators like to think they’re smarter than that.

Over the past decade, revenue management – the science of smart pricing – has become a standard practice.

At the same time, technology providers have created automated programs that help properties determine the right price for the right guest at the right time. And hotels have a long list of online channels where they can advertise rate and convert browsers to bookers.

As the industry begins to see a slowdown in business performance, Lodging Leaders explores how hoteliers should be pricing now and in the near future.

We interview several specialists and technology innovators who focus on nothing but revenue management for hotels.

They share what to do if a hotel in your market starts to discounts rates; how to use online booking channels to generate more business; how far out to plan your revenue strategy; and what tactics to deploy to optimize profit.

Resources and Links

Oct 09 2019

33mins

Play

135 | Hospitality Recruiting Best Practices with John Carpenter

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John Carpenter has been in recruiting for 7 years, two years of recruiting semi-pro/college basketball players, and 5 years in the hospitality industry. He currently serves as Hotel Division Executive Recruiter and Vice President of Operations at Snelling Hospitality in Akron, Ohio.

In This Episode, John Reveals:

  • What you should expect when working with a good recruiter, both as a candidate and as a hotelier, why transparency is so important, and what separates a good recruiter from an average or bad one.
  • How working with a recruiter could actually be the way to YOUR next job.
  • Best practices for dealing with candidates, what he looks for when vetting candidates for a hotel client, and why the candidate AND employee experience is just as important as the guest experience.
  • The prices you can expect to pay for Snelling Hospitality’s executive recruiting services.

Get a FREE Resume Critique

By an Experienced Hospitality Industry Executive Recruiter

Resources & Links

John Carpenter

  • john@snellinghospitality.com
  • LinkedIn
  • Phone: (330) 836-9901 ext 211

Snelling Hospitality

Nov 01 2017

35mins

Play

202 | Mitch Patel Redesigns the Future of Vision Hospitality

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This week, Lodging Leaders focuses on Mitch Patel and his company, Vision Hospitality Group in Chattanooga, Tennessee. We will hear from Mitch about how he has remade Vision Hospitality Group to capture new segments of travelers and capitalize on new and emerging trends in guests’ needs, wants and expectations. We also hear from others involved in Vision Hospitality Group’s remake.

Resources & Links

Feb 27 2019

45mins

Play

042 | Money Isn’t the Problem, You Are! with Gary Douglas

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Gary Douglas is a best-selling author, international speaker and a sought-after facilitator known for his intensity of awareness and his incredible capacity to facilitate people to ‘know what they know’. He chooses to embody consciousness in everything that he does which inspires others to choose to become more conscious as a result.

Gary came with an exceptional level of awareness into the Midwest middle class ‘white bread’ family and lived the ‘Leave it to Beaver’ childhood. He has a very different view on life and realized that he was so different from most of the people he knew when he was only six years old. He became aware of this difference by watching people create their lives and seeing that none of it was about the joy and the possibilities – it was always about the wrongness of everything. Gary knew there had to be more than this reality was offering since there was nothing about it that was magical, joyful or expansive. So, he began seeking deeper awareness to life’s mysteries at an early age. Along the way he uncovered a new way forward- one that would create change in the world and in people’s lives. He discovered that magic is all around us; it’s something we create – its consciousness. He recognized that the capacity to be more aware and more conscious was every person’s gift if they were willing to choose it.

Over time what he recognized as the gift he was, was his intensity of awareness and his capacity to invite people to consciousness and to recognize that everything is possible and nothing is impossible. His gift is his ability to look at life, the universe and the consciousness that we all are, as well as the possibilities that are an intrinsic part of it from a space that no one else has ever chosen.

Empowering people to see different possibilities

Gary has become an internationally recognized thought leader in transforming lives and creating different choices – willing to empower people to see different possibilities and to recognize what is truly possible for them. Gary is acknowledged worldwide for his unique perspectives on personal transformation that is unlike anything else in the world. He is not aligned with any particular religion or tradition. Through his writing and workshops, he gifts processes and tools that bring within reach the ease, joy and glory of life, and the magic of happiness that expand into more awareness, joy and abundance. His simple yet profound teachings have already facilitated countless people throughout the world to ‘know what they know’ and to realize what they can choose that they never realized they could choose.

At the core of his teachings lies the transformation of consciousness

After recognizing that greater consciousness in people can change the direction of their lives and the future of the planet, the creation and expansion of Access Consciousness by Gary has been primarily driven by a single question, “What can I do to help the world?”

He continues to inspire others, inviting the awareness of a different possibility across the world and making an immense contribution to the planet. He facilitates people to know that they are the source for creating the change they desire and creating a life that goes beyond the limitations of what the rest of the world thinks is important. He sees this as an essential aspect to creating a future that has greater possibilities in it for everyone as well as the planet. This is a priority not only for personal happiness but also for the ending of violent conflict endemic on our planet and creating a different world. If enough people choose to be more aware and more conscious, they will start to see the possibilities of what they have available to them and change what is occurring here on planet earth.

In This Episode, Gary Reveals …

  • What Benevolent Capitalism is, and how it’s possible, and easy, to run a business that increases your wealth while simultaneously contributing to society.
  • How socially conscious businesses like Toms.com and Starbucks are making a massive contribution to the world WHILE generating massive profits for the company.
  • 5 Things You Won’t Ever Hear in Business – and why you need to!
  • 4 Steps to Creating an Innovative Business – some of which may surprise you, and what happens when you don’t innovate.
  • Truths about consciousness, setting the intention, and creating the space to receive the answers.
  • How our views of business, abundance, and success will ultimately play out in our lives. As Henry Ford said, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.”

The bottom line is that Thoughts are creative. What do you want to create in your life?

Resources & Links

(Some of) Gary’s Books

Jan 28 2016

48mins

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014 | Financial and Emotional Freedom Through Values-Based Life Planning with Mayur Dalal

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Mayur Dalal has been providing financial advisory products and services for more than 27 years. The CEO of Dalal Capital Advisors, Mayur and his team provide top-quality wealth management, insurance, and tax-advantaged strategies that are designed to help clients realize their financial goals.

Mayur is also CEO of The Oxford Group of Lake Success – an intellectual capital company focusing on developing customized solutions for professionals and closely held family businesses. Their services include family wealth coaching, family governance, and business succession planning for high net worth families.

Mayur is an expert in values-based life planning, and his goal is to empower, educate and enlighten his clients, by integrating emotional freedom with financial freedom.

Mayur grew up in a large family with an abundance of love but a scarcity of facilities and resources. These humble beginnings gave him a phenomenal insight into how to coexist with limited resources and make the most of it. Mayur was a fast learner and his father constantly challenged him to break barriers, including skipping grades in school. By the young age of 28, Mayur became the head of Best Foods in India.

Resources & Links

Mayur T. Dalal – CEO

Sagar M. Dalal – President

Dalal Capital Advisors LLC

The Oxford Group of Lake Success

Jul 09 2015

1hr 3mins

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240 | Room at The Inn: How hotels can avoid silent nights this holiday season

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The holiday season is upon us.

For many hotels, regular business tends to drop off this time of year.

Seasonality takes different forms and depends on several factors, including your hotel’s target market and its location.

In this episode, we find out how hoteliers can leverage the traditional retail sales season as well as the consumer-spending mindset to drive business to their properties.

We talk to Stephanie Sparks Smith, founder of Cogwheel Marketing in Seattle, Washington, and Stuart Butler, COO of Fuel Travel in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

Resources and Links

Dec 04 2019

24mins

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239 | Good As New: Surge in hotel renovations expected to boost business

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Hotel industry analysts and watchers expect property renovations in the United States to surge over the next two years.

They cite several reasons for the outlook, including:

  • The industry has surpassed the peak of its recovery from the Great Recession;
  • A slowdown in revenue growth is predicted for this year and next;
  • The leveling off of a robust construction pipeline; and
  • A record-breaking transaction pace in 2018.

Construction companies, suppliers and others anticipate investors will focus on upgrading and improving existing assets. The 700 hotels that changed hands in 2018 and the approximate 115 assets sold in the first three quarters of this year have given owners plenty to work with over the next two years or longer.

In this episode of Lodging Leaders, we explore the hotel renovation outlook. We find out what owners need to know before tackling a renovation project, how to keep guests happy during the transformation process and what steps to take to grow your business after the renovation dust has settled.

We talk to Heather Tuskowski, director of operations at Winter Construction; Mark Matz, co-president and COO at Premier Project Management; Mario Insenga, founder and CEO of The Refinishing Touch; Stuart Butler, COO at Fuel Travel; and Simon Rizk, vice president of operations at Pro Hospitality Group who recently oversaw a renovation at GreenTree Inn & Suites in Pinetop, Arizona.

Resources and Links

Nov 27 2019

32mins

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238 | Reaching the Finish Line: Hotel construction companies hurdle project barriers

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STR recently reported the hotel construction pipeline for the U.S. was up 5.5 percent in October. It was the lowest year-over-year increase in lodging construction activity in six months.

Despite the slowdown, construction companies say they are as busy as ever. However, they do anticipate a leveling off of new builds over the next couple years.

In this episode of Lodging Leaders, we talk to specialists in hotel construction to find out what they think is causing the muted growth. They share industry challenges and outlooks and discuss emerging trends such as Design-Build that help get hotels up and open in time and on budget.

Featured in today’s report are Bill Wilhelm, president of R.D. Olson Construction in California; Dale White Sr. and Stephanie Hall of D.A.G. Construction Co. in Ohio; and Brent Reid, CEO of Winter Construction in Georgia.

Resources and Links:

Nov 19 2019

27mins

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237 | Shop ’Til You Drop: Hospitality procurement specialists manage a mixed bag of challenges

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U.S.-China trade war. Design-savvy online furniture retailers. Hurricanes. Marijuana.

These things and more are having an impact on hospitality purchasing. And they’re influencing the prices of hotel FF&E and OS&E as well as the cost of construction.

In this episode of Lodging Leaders, we talk to specialists in procurement and logistics to find out the trends and challenges facing the hospitality industry as it continues to build new hotels and renovate existing ones.

We find out what’s costing your project more money than it should. And we identify opportunities and pitfalls to be aware of while in the planning stages.

We talk to Marla Davis, senior vice president of procurement at Premier Project Management; William Langmade, CEO of Purchasing Management International; and Darlene Henke, president and CEO of Audit Logistics.

Resources and Links

Nov 13 2019

30mins

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236 | Breach of Trust: Cybercrime a pervasive threat to the hospitality industry

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It’s a given in today’s technological age that you operate a hotel business that depends on technology to process customer credit card purchases and to store personal information about your guests that helps you serve them better.

In addition, you probably are aware of cybercrime and that nefarious hackers frequently target payment systems. You’ve done all you can to make sure your customers’ data is secure, even adhering to payment card industry data security standards or PCI DSS and other processing protocols such as the European Union’s general data protection regulation or GDPR.

While it’s a smart move to be PCI and GDPR compliant, that does not fully guarantee your hotel data is safe from hackers.

There is more you can do.

If you think the threat is just too big to handle, know this: A data breach at your business is probable and it will cost you a lot of money.

A new IBM report notes the average cost of a data breach in a U.S. business is more than $8 million. Most of the cost is the result of lost business, meaning travelers stop coming to your hotel because they don’t trust the security of the technology.

The bigger the loss of data and the longer the breach goes undetected, the more it will cost you.

In this episode, Lodging Leaders explores the topic of cyber security and what steps you can take to protect your business information.

Co-host Judy Maxwell attended the HFTP’s 2019 Annual Convention in Orlando, Florida, last month. She covered presentations on cyber security and interviewed the presenters.

Included in this report are Ron Hardin, director of information technology at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort; Paul West, a risk management and technical adviser at GapSpot!; Jen Stone, senior security analyst with SecurityMetrics; and Scott Boren of Boren & Associates, a compliance auditor.

Resources and Links

Nov 06 2019

28mins

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235 | Lodging Leaders Spotlight: Yotel a tech-forward brand worth watching

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Taco Bell made headlines when it opened a 70-room pop-up hotel in August in Palm Springs, California.

It was a marketing scheme that lasted four days.

The day The Bell Hotel began to accept reservations, it sold out in two minutes.

The guaranteed novelty of staying in a Taco Bell hotel obviously paid off for the company, but it’s not the only fast food business that has ventured into the hotel space.

Ten years ago, Simon Woodroffe, founded YO! Sushi, which delivers food on a conveyor belt and has robots that deliver drinks. Woodroffe went on to use his technology and design prowess to co-create Yotel hotels with Gerard Greene.

Yotel began with technology-enabled sleeping cabins at airports.

Today, Yotel Hotels & Resorts is a sustainable hospitality company that recently launched an ambitious plan to expand its presence around the world.

In this episode we talk with Hubert Viriot, CEO of Yotel Hotels & Resorts for the past five years, about the company’s growth strategy.

Also featured is Christopher Grey, chief technology officer at Intelity, which recently teamed up with Yotel to scale its innovative, tech-forward guest-services platform.

And we include some audio clips of Woodroffe talking about the early vision for Yotel.

Resources and Links

Oct 30 2019

25mins

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234 | More for the Money: Upselling generates significant revenue gains for hotels

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Though average daily rate in U.S. hotels continues to grow year over year, hotel operators are not so eager to increase room prices these days.

STR and Oxford Economics forecast ADR will increase by 1.9 percent this year and 2.2 percent in 2020.

While an increase is usually viewed as a positive, the joy is muted in the hotel industry. STR noted in August that inflation coupled with increasing room supply are outpacing the rise in hotel revenue.

Hotel operators are experiencing what STR calls “an absence of pricing confidence.”

So, you don’t want to increase your room rate but you need to make more money.

How do you do that? You upsell. You offer additional products and services to guests who have already booked at your property.

Think you do not have anything to offer besides a clean room and free breakfast? Think again. Generating extra revenue by upselling is possible no matter the location, type and size of your hotel.

In today’s episode Lodging Leaders talks to experts in upselling in the hospitality industry.

You’ll hear from Geoffrey Toffetti, president and chief marketing officer of Frontline Performance Group, and Jason Bryant, founder and CEO of Nor1.

They talk about the art and science of selling upgrades and when to engage the guest with offers. And they give tips on ways to increase incremental revenue that goes straight to your bottom line.

Oct 23 2019

31mins

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233 | How Does Your Hotel Rate? Smart pricing strategies key to winning in a downturn

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It’s often said the U.S. hotel industry is a street-corner business. With that point of view, it may not take much for a hotel operator to panic and set off a price war on your block.

The industry fell victim to mindless discounting in the days immediately after 9/11 and during the depth of the Great Recession.

Today’s hotel owners and operators like to think they’re smarter than that.

Over the past decade, revenue management – the science of smart pricing – has become a standard practice.

At the same time, technology providers have created automated programs that help properties determine the right price for the right guest at the right time. And hotels have a long list of online channels where they can advertise rate and convert browsers to bookers.

As the industry begins to see a slowdown in business performance, Lodging Leaders explores how hoteliers should be pricing now and in the near future.

We interview several specialists and technology innovators who focus on nothing but revenue management for hotels.

They share what to do if a hotel in your market starts to discounts rates; how to use online booking channels to generate more business; how far out to plan your revenue strategy; and what tactics to deploy to optimize profit.

Resources and Links

Oct 09 2019

33mins

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232 | Wage Pressures: How to plug cost leaks in your hotel’s labor pool (Labor and Hiring Part 2)

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At the peak of a great upward climb from the Great Recession, the U.S. lodging industry is seeing a leveling off in business performance.

During the 25th annual Lodging Conference in Phoenix last week, many industry experts talked about a new normal of muted revenue gains and thinner profit margins as expenses continue to grow.

The biggest and fastest-growing operating expense in the hotel industry today is labor.

STR reports U.S. hotels saw labor costs grow an average 3.7 percent from 2016 through 2018. Those three years are the only period in the past 20 years in which labor costs exceeded revenue growth.

Although industry analysts cite much-talked-about causes of increased labor costs such as minimum wage laws and a tight employment market, some of the reasons your hotel is wrestling with the expense are not so obvious.

In this episode of Lodging Leaders – the second in a two-part series about hiring and labor – we explore how you can get a grip on labor costs, become more efficient in scheduling employee hours, and manage employees’ work expectations.

We hear from Del Ross, chief revenue officer at Hotel Effectiveness; Bryan DeCort, executive vice president at Hotel Equities; and Bruce Barishman, vice president of operational excellence at Interstate Hotels & Resorts. We also include excerpts from a presentation by economist Bernard Baumohl at The Lodging Conference.

Resources and Links

Oct 02 2019

32mins

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231 | Culture Club: Your hotel’s work environment may be bad for business (Labor and Hiring Part 1)

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Is your hotel a fun place to work? Do your employees look forward to spending their day at your hotel?

If the answers are no, then your business is in trouble.

Do you have difficulty keeping good employees? Do you see staff members whispering in huddled groups? Do you or your supervisors work behind closed doors?

If the answers are yes, then your business is in trouble.

Many hotel managers know how to build a culture of service to attract guests. At the same time, they may overlook the needs and expectations of the other people in the building.

Successful leaders not only focus on creating positive experiences that acquire guests and build customer loyalty, they expand those strategies to the hotel’s workforce to attract and keep good employees.

This episode of Lodging Leaders explores the concept of workplace culture, and why it matters, especially in today’s tight labor market.

We talk about how a positive work environment can make your hotel business, and how a toxic atmosphere can break it.

We interview Del Ross, chief revenue officer at Hotel Effectiveness; Carrie David, chief human resources officer at Interstate Hotels & Resorts; Chris Bennis, a recruiter with Snelling Hospitality; Bryan DeCort, executive vice president at Hotel Equities; and Nancy Curtin Morris, vice president of learning and people development at Hotel Equities.

Resources and Links

Sep 25 2019

29mins

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230 | Funding CapEx: New report tells what it takes for hotels to stay competitive

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More than 20 years ago, a team of hotel industry consultants and asset managers got together to figure out how much hotels in the U.S. spend each year on property improvements and maintenance.

The idea was if owners and operators know in advance what it will cost to keep a hotel property up to date and in good working order, it would help them put the right amount of cash in reserve to deal with the expected ,as well as the unexpected.

In 1997, David Berins and Peggy Berg produced the industry’s first CapEx study. They recommended hotels increase their capital reserves from 3 percent, to 4 percent, to afford pending property improvement plans and inevitable equipment replacements.

Today, that 4 percent is still regarded as an industry standard. But modern day consultants say the reserve benchmark is woefully underestimated and CapEx planning is so much more complex than it was two decades ago.

So how are hotel owners and managers supposed to plan? And by how much?

In this episode, Lodging Leaders explores the latest CapEx report researched and published by two organizations – the International Society of Hospitality Consultants and the Hospitality Asset Managers Association – with the help of STR.

We feature David Berins of Berins & Co., who says he coined the CapEx abbreviation. We hear from Alan Benjamin of procurement firm Benjamin West, who has co-chaired the past several CapEx studies. And we talk to Matthew Hick of Access Point Financial, a specialty hotel finance company that lends for FF&E projects.

Resources and Links

To buy a copy of “ISHC CapEx 2018: A Study of Capital Expenditures in the Hotel Industry” visit ISHC.com.

Sep 18 2019

29mins

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229 | Panic Buttons: Hospitality Workers Sound the Alarm (Hotel Safety Part 2)

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When Robb Monkman was a college student, he and his roommates were robbed at gunpoint. The home invasion and hostage taking rocked Monkman to his core and determined the course of his career.

Monkman is founder and CEO of ReactMobile, which provides electronic security devices, or panic buttons, for businesses, including the hospitality industry.

ReactMobile is among several technology companies included in the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s Five Star Promise, a pledge by major hotel companies to establish and implement best practices to protect their employees. The promise includes the deployment of hand-held technology, hospitality workers can use to summon help in times of crisis for themselves or guests.

In this episode, Part Two of Lodging Leaders’ report on hotel safety and security, we explore panic button technology and trends. We interview advisers on what’s available to hotel owners and operators as they work to come up with methods to protect their employees. We also review AHLA’s Five Star Promise and what it is calling the hospitality industry to do. And we talk with Unite Here, the labor union that got the whole thing started.

Resources and Links

To view the American Hotel & Lodging Association’s Five Star Promise news conference on Sept. 6, 2018, click here.

Sep 11 2019

33mins

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228 | Run, Hide, Fight: How to prepare for an active shooter (Hotel Safety Part 1)

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“Active shooter” is a term used by law enforcement to describe a situation in which a shooting is in progress.

The classification calls into action protocols relating to response and reaction – not only by police but also by citizens, says the FBI. In the case of an “active shooter,” everyone’s response and reaction can affect the outcome.

The bureau has counted 288 active shooter incidents in the U.S. from 2000 through 2018.

Twenty-one of those occurred at places of business. Of those, five were at hotels or motels.

Though lodging accounted for less than 2 percent of all active-shooting incidents logged by the FBI over the past 18 years, it’s an unfathomable crisis if it happens at your property.

Many safety and security experts say hotel owners and operators must have a mindset of “not if but when” in preparing for the possibility of an active shooter on property. And some veteran hoteliers say, it only makes sense that the act of hospitality is extended before, during and after times of crisis.

Today’s episode of Lodging Leaders is the first part in a report about hotel safety. We cull information from the FBI, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP), a non-profit organization that published a white paper about hospitality attacks.

We talk to Paul Frederick, a security and safety expert and co-founder of Hospitality Security Advisors, and Elie Khoury, executive vice president of operations resources at Interstate Hotels & Resorts, a third-party manager.

Also featured are Roger Bloss, a veteran hotelier who is putting his weight behind a new hotel insurance program called InsuraGuest, which plans to offer coverage for guests injured in an attack on property. Also included is Natalee Bloss, Roger’s daughter who was at the scene of the Oct. 1, 2017, shooting in Las Vegas and sought safety at her family’s hotel.

Resources and Links

For tips on what to do when involved in an active shooting incident, visit:

Sep 04 2019

25mins

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227 | Mass Appeal: Crowdfunding for hotel development mines new sources of cash

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When it launched five years ago, crowdfunding for real estate development was a hot topic, especially among hotel developers seeking new ways to pay for their projects.

Though it’s not creating the same level of buzz as it did when it first became a federally sanctioned option in 2014, crowdfunding remains a viable tool in attracting a wide range of investors and sourcing new streams of cash.

Basically, crowdfunding is a campaign for small amounts of money from a large number of people. It is friends and family financing gone viral.

We talk to hotel developers who are using the alternative financing method to raise cash for their projects.

The projects are vastly different, as are the fundraisers’ goals, and target investors.

One is a boutique property in a resort market, and the developer plans to raise the entire construction cost via crowdfunding. The other is a midscale branded hotel in a technology park, and the firm is selling shares to close a funding gap.

Featured in today’s report is Nathan Kivi, founder of HotelierCo, an online fundraising company targeting hotel development; and Bhavik Dani, founder of EquityRoots, another fintech venture that’s raising capital for one project while about to break ground on another.

We also explain the evolution of crowdfunding, and why the federal government gave the technology its nod of approval as part of a national economic recovery program.

Anyone considering raising money for a project over the internet, or investing money via an online program, should first consult a professional adviser.

Resources and Links

For more information on crowdfunding visit:

The SEC study mentioned in this report is titled “Capital Raising in the U.S.: An Analysis of the Market for Unregistered Securities Offerings, 2009‐2017” and can be accessed here.

Aug 28 2019

24mins

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226 | It’s a Long Story: Historic hotels gain new appreciation among travelers, brands

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Hotel developers and investors seeking new ideas might do well to remember history.

More travelers today want an immersive experience not just in the places they visit but in the hotels in which they stay. And they’re willing to pay more for it.

Historic hotels often give guests what they crave – a sense of place, a connection to something meaningful, a story to tell, a time to remember.

Historic hotels also give owners and operators what they desire – a significant return on investment.

CBRE Hotels America’s Research reports that the more than 300 hotels that are members of Historic Hotels of America generate greater occupancy and command higher rate than their contemporary counterparts.

In today’s episode we talk with Lawrence Horwitz, executive director of Historic Hotels of America, about the growth in preservation of historic lodging accommodations as well as buildings that have been restored and transformed into hotels. Also featured are Kevin Hellmich, director of sales and marketing at the Grand Hotel in Point Clear, Alabama; Susan Stein, Grand Hotel historian; and Guido Piccinni, managing director of the Georgian Terrace in midtown Atlanta.

Resources and Links

Aug 21 2019

27mins

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225 | LinkedIn Means Business: How to use social media to grow

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It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.

That career adage is about 100 years old, but it still rings true today, especially when it comes to social media. If you’re not tuned into social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn, it’s time to reconsider.

With more than 3 billion people on social media around the world, the platforms can expose you to tons of knowledge and connect you to people who can help grow your career or business.

While a lot of attention is given to Facebook, Youtube and Instagram these days, one platform professionals should pay attention to is LinkedIn.

Though it got a slow start more than 15 years ago, the global channel has nearly 600 million members. It is the place to be today for professionals who want to see, and be seen.

In this episode, Lodging Leaders talks to three business-minded LinkedIn members about how they use the social media platform as a tool to position themselves as industry leaders, share their brand messaging, and grow personally and professionally.

They offer advice and tips on how you can use LinkedIn to gain recognition in the B2B arena and expand your, and your company’s, circle of influence.

We talk to William Arruda, an author and adviser on personal branding, social media and LinkedIn; Rupesh Patel, CEO of State Hospitality, a hotel company, and founder of SmartGuests.com, a customer-service venture; and Rocco Bova, a general manager and entrepreneur who coaches industry newcomers on how to use social media as a continual education platform.

Resources and Links

Aug 14 2019

42mins

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224 | Mixed Message: Multicultural and heritage tourism is big business

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Most people the world over think of the United States as a multicultural melting pot. We are still quintessentially American, but from north to south and east to west, our cities and outlying communities are dotted with districts defined by residents’ ethnicity and culture.

Today, the more developed and culturally defined areas are attracting visitors in search of new experiences and information.

Cities with Chinatowns, Latino barrios, Indian American corridors and African American neighborhoods are seeing a surge in national and international travelers eager to either connect with their roots or satisfy their curiosity.

Many ethnically diverse communities, as well as business and social organizations, are rising up to abet the travel trend, which many experts say is only going to grow stronger as more and more travelers seek unique and memorable experiences.

Multicultural or heritage tourism is good for the hospitality industry and it is also beneficial to a city’s economic growth. One study we’ll talk about says the more diverse a city, the stronger its economy.

In today’s episode, Lodging Leaders examines how hotels and other hospitality businesses can capture a generous piece of this tourism trend.

We talk to Connie Kinnard, vice president of multicultural tourism development for the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau; Greg DeShields, executive director of PHL Diversity in Philadelphia; and Michael Fullerton, senior director of public policy and public affairs for Brand USA.

Resources and Links

Aug 07 2019

27mins

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223 | Grading Curves: NAACP diversity report card reveals weaknesses in hotel companies

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“Equal opportunity for people of color in the United States remains an unrealized goal.”

That is the opening statement in a recently released study by NAACP.

The same opening statement appears in the organization’s 2012 report on diversity in the U.S. hotel industry.

The 2019 study titled “Opportunity & Diversity Report Card: The Hotel & Lodging Industry,” not only shows stagnation in racial equality in hospitality workplaces, it reveals African Americans have lost ground over the past decade in their climb to the top in U.S. hotel companies.

The report card examines the efforts of four major hotel corporations to diversify their workforces, from rank-and-file all the way up to the C-suites.

None of the companies – Marriott International, Hilton Worldwide, Hyatt Hotels Corp. and Wyndham Hotels & Resorts – fared well in the study, which was based on research performed in 2017. Grades ranged from Bs to Fs in various categories such as hiring, promotion and supplier diversity.

The research was limited. NAACP surveyed the highest-earning companies and their corporate-owned and managed hotels. Franchised properties were not included. But the NAACP and other minority leaders hope to change that dynamic by pushing for information on the diversity of franchisees, as well as who is working in their branded hotels.

In this episode, we take a closer look at the latest report. We hear from Marvin Owens, senior director of economic development at the NAACP; Andy Ingraham, president and CEO of the National Association of Black Hotel Owners, Operators and Developers; and Dyshaun Hines and Skye Curry, graduate students in hospitality administration. We also feature remarks by Hilton CEO Chris Nassetta, who Ingraham interviewed at last week’s NABHOOD summit in Miami, Florida.

Resources and Links

Jul 31 2019

25mins

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222 | Flying Solo: What it takes to go from franchised to independent

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Independent hotel supply in the U.S. has decreased in the past 10 years, reports STR.

The lodging-data company reports independently owned and operated hotels account for less than 40 percent of all hotels. About 1 percent of those close each year.

But that trend may take a turn.

It appears more and more hoteliers who have grown their companies with franchised brands are considering going independent.

We’re talking about entrepreneurs are converting existing branded properties into non-affiliated hotels.

The franchise contracts are approaching the end, and thanks to the internet, online distribution channels and sophisticated operating and marketing technologies, flying solo is no longer a day dream.

However, before lowering your brand flag, listen to the advice of three hoteliers who either have done it or are planning to do it.

You may discover that franchising is the best model for your business, after all.

In today’s episode, we talk to San Diego hoteliers Bobby Patel of Hotel Investment Group which has nine independent hotels, and Vipul Dayal of VNR Management who is converting a family-owned franchised property and writing a book about it.

We also hear from Timesh Patel of Ohm Culture Hotels in Inglewood, California, who, as he puts it, was “punched in the face” when he transitioned from franchised to independent.

Resources and Links

Jul 24 2019

26mins

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221 | Home Sharing’s Heavy Hitters: Airbnb’s genius is branding (Part 2)

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Last week, part one of our report on Airbnb looked at the home-sharing giant’s impact on hotel business performance. We reported on a study that shows for every 100 percent increase in Airbnb accommodations in a market, hotel RevPAR declines by an average 3 percent.

We also reported a growth in the number of whole houses on online distribution channels as homes become “investor units.”

Meantime, more everyday homeowners have warmed up to the idea of making some extra money by sharing their digs with short-term travelers.

This week, in part two, we explore what’s good and smart about Airbnb and how hotels can successfully vie for travelers’ bookings and loyalty. We also take a look at new lodging trends spurred by the home-sharing movement.

We talk to Leslie James, head of marketing at AirDNA, a data research platform for the home-sharing industry. We hear from Paul Breslin of Horwath HTL and Mark Woodworth of CBRE Hotels Americas Research about the new generation of travelers driving the home-sharing trend. We also talk more with Makarand Mody, a researcher and assistant professor at Boston University School of Hospitality Administration who has published several studies about Airbnb and the home-sharing phenomenon. And with Hans Detlefsen of Hotel Appraisers and Advisors, who has ideas about hotel companies adopting some Airbnb business practices.

Resources and Links

Jul 17 2019

23mins

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