Recommended Reading- Historian Turkel reminds us how the past influences the future

Great American Hoteliers    Stanley Turkel has spent his career with a number of well-known companies in management roles. These include Loews, Sheraton and Americana. He consulted with Dunfey (now Omni) and found his permanent home in his favorite city – New York. Turkel is well-known in the hotel industry, from his writing, his hotel consulting practice, his expert witness service in hotel-related cases, as well as asset management and hotel franchising consultation. He is certified as a Master Hotel Supplier Emeritus by the Educational Institute of AH&LA.

At times, Stan can be sometimes controversial in his monthly editorials NOBODY ASKED ME, BUT… yet without a doubt he has left his mark on the industry with his insights, his shared knowledge, the questions he asks and in his writing.

Turkel loves to share insights and stories about the history of hospitality. He was designated as the Historian of the Year in both 2014 and 2015 by Historic Hotels of America, which is the official venue of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. This honor is presented to an individual for making a unique contribution in the research and presentation of hotel history and whose work has encouraged a wide discussion and a greater understanding and enthusiasm for American History.

I just finished a book I meant to read years ago and wish I had done so earlier. Great American Hoteliers: Pioneers of the Hotel Industry is a fascinating and interesting refresher of where much of our industry found its foundation.

At a time when the industry is soaring and ownership is as widespread as it has ever been, it is appropriate to look at where some of that success originated. Turkel considered 16 hospitality professionals he ranked as significant. Alphabetically, they are:

1. John Bowman – founder of the Biltmore Hotels brand

2. Carl Fisher – the developer of Miami Beach

3. Henry Flagler – the multi-industry entrepreneur who developed much of eastern Florida through railroads and hotels


4. John Q. Hammons – an early Holiday Inn franchisee who developed his own systems and destiny

5. Frederich Harvey – a turn of the century western developer who innovated national parks and service delivery

6. Ernest Henderson – a real estate developer who accidentally created the Sheraton Hotel brand and came to enjoy some of the facets of hospitality

7. Conrad Hilton – a name recognized by most, but with stories that are worth reading about how he came to unintentionally make hotels his niche

8. Howard Johnson – a restaurateur now mainly forgotten, but who made interstate food and lodging an essential part of American travel

9. J. Willard Marriott – the father of better known Bill Marriott, Jr, this pioneer had to be convinced to change his beliefs and switch from food service in many facets to hotels

10. K M Patel – one of the early innovators from India who found inn keeping as a bridge to success for his and many other Indian immigrants who found being a hotelier an honorable profession

11. Henry Plant – a lesser known developer who developed the Gulf Coast of Florida
12. George Pullman – not usually thought of as a hotelier, this innovator created hotels on wheels. This is a mixed story of success and unpleasant actions, in my estimation

13. A M Sonnanbend – creator of a family business that managed many of New York and America’s better known eastern hotels as well as creating several brands

14. Ellsworth Statler – I admit to a bias here, in that I know a great deal about one of the most innovative and creative hoteliers America has ever known. While he passed away in 1928, his legacy remains in construction, service, training, profitability, marketing and value for both guest and hotel owner.

15. Juan Trippe – known primarily as an airline executive, this Pan Am innovator partnered travel with both hotels and air travel

16. Kemmons Wilson – a construction builder, Wilson used his personal family travel challenges to create a family friendly hotel that grew to one of the world’s largest and best known brands

A book worth reading for a University level program, or for those who are looking to understand how the past influences the future.

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

 

Comments and suggestions for future articles are always welcome john@hoganhospitality.com 

 

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

John@Hoganhospitality.com    Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

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The Best Boutique Hotels In _______ / Are you getting tired of this heading?

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I use a google search that uses the term “Boutique Hotel” because I have been retained to complete some research in recent months for a number of clients for a range of reasons. The number of “news” articles that lead off with this heading seems to be growing at an incredible pace. In reality, most of them are essentially PR promos.

My question is this- what do you at your property to make it special? Unique? Memorable?

Feel free to contact me if you could use an independent, 3rd party resource.

Comments and suggestions for future articles are always welcome john@hoganhospitality.com 

 

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

John@Hoganhospitality.com    Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

Lodging Leaders Podcast Guest Blog: HOTEL CRIME- How to manage a high-profile case

Comments and suggestions for future articles are always welcome john@hoganhospitality.com 

 

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

John@Hoganhospitality.com    Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

7 Practical Steps on MBWA

                           7 Practical Steps on MBWA:  Hotel Common Sense 
I was looking at some of my earlier articles written for hospitality publications and realized how well this one was received. Interesting to me that while so much in our businesses has changed, so much remains within our control to influence.

An earlier article used one of Tom Peters and Robert Waterman’s fundamentals from their groundbreaking book on changing the ways we do business.  IN SEARCH OF EXCELLENCE introduced a formal name for what the more successful hospitality managers already knew about motivating their staff. The phrase “Management by Walking Around” was based on Hewlett-Packard’s commitment to their staff with interaction – not micromanagement, but ongoing listening and responding to staff ideas.

Hotel Common Sense – Philosophy #2 , Or, why the Open Door policy no longer works… article outlined how today’s workforce wants and needs to be considered as individuals who can contribute to the success of their organization.

Reader feedback showed the growing awareness to that need for additional management and leadership “active listening” and this follow-up message on MBWA offers some concrete ways to notch up that effort of positive involvement.

1. Allow your staff to share complete stories and messages.  Many hospitality companies are trying to improve their customer care programs, yet how often do leaders and managers actually ask an hourly staff member to share a story about either an unhappy or very satisfied guest? Listening to the entire story could provide best practices that might be substantially more effective and less expensive than hiring a consultant.

2. Avoid the tendency to interrupt.   General Managers are results oriented people who are looking for the bottom line.  I know from personal experience the tendency to “hurry” people along is there, but allowing people to share the entire experience will encourage them to be more open.

3. Remember eye contact in conversations.  One of my first mentors taught me a great deal about hospitality, but his habit of looking over my shoulder when we were talking always made me feel I was missing something. Give confidence to people with your eyes.

4. Collect and communicate these stories of success (and failures). Sharing these stories (appropriately) at meetings of all staff, at training sessions, in newsletters and more provides an incentive to people to want to contribute because they have learned that you really do care. I have seen some outstanding examples of “you tube” like testimonials from a number of hospitality companies of all sizes.

5. Remember this is not a game of “one-up.”  As General Managers, we have likely been in the business longer or heard more stories and it is important to recognize that we should not try to offer one “better” story than the one we are hearing. Remember, MBWA is about “active listening.”

6. Credit the source.  When we add a new resource, form or best practice to our hospitality membership site, we obtain permission first and then always make certain we credit them fully. Each of us has unique approaches, messages and talents and sharing the credit with our associates and guests is essential to moving forward.

7. Build trust by honestly listening.  Some (correction, many) of the best suggestions I have ever heard as a manager or executive came from the people who are performing the job. I learned more about laundry sorting, washing pots and up-selling from people who were proud to be successful at what they were doing. Some of those suggestions needed clarification and some were not told as quickly as I might have preferred, but building teams means using all the team members’ strengths.

HOTEL COMMON SENSE was a phrase I learned from a great independent Vermont hotelier a generation ago,

Keys to Success Hospitality  Tip of the Week:

Focus on MBWA 

A challenge to every manager who is responsible for 5 or more people: measure your in and out of the office time and at the end of the week, see how much time you spent ACTIVELY INTERACTING with your team.

The goal is 70% of your time out of the office – how did you do?

What will you do next week?

As always, feedback is appreciated.

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO

John@Hoganhospitality.com    Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

How the World’s Largest Hotels have changed – Guest Blog

I have always admired Ellsworth Statler and am pleased to post this as a guest blog.

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO    John@Hoganhospitality.com

The Inside Inn Was the World’s Largest Hotel During the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair—Then It Was Torn Down
By Mark Young -October 30, 2018

Ellsworth Statler, the legendary American hotelier, was a visionary who applied late 19th and early 20th century advances in technology and modern business systems to hotel operations. In applying these modern efficiencies while simultaneously maintaining the comforts and elegance that customers expected, Statler helped create the most successful American hotel chain of the first half of the 20th century.

Before hotels, Statler operated dining rooms and restaurants. When the Louisiana Purchase Exposition and World’s Fair—better known as the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair—was announced, his interest was piqued. Fair organizers were worried that the existing hotels in St. Louis would be overwhelmed with visitors. Even with the construction of many new hotels to serve the fairgoers, there was a fear that the scarcity of accommodations might negatively impact the fair and city. Nervous fair organizers approached Statler, who had successfully operated a large temporary hotel at the 1901 Pan American Exposition in Buffalo, New York.

They asked if he would be able to construct and manage a large temporary hotel for the exposition. Statler offered to build a structure that would house fairgoers and provide dining facilities inside the fairgrounds. That hotel—the only one within the fairgrounds —was appropriately called the “Inside Inn.” Although a temporary structure, it was described as the “largest hotel ever built in the history of the world.” It occupied the equivalent of four city blocks and ranged from two to four stories high. Incredibly for the time, the Inside Inn contained 2,257 rooms, 500 with private baths and another 500 with bath/shower combinations; for guests in the remaining rooms, there were common facilities. There were 156 bellboys—as they were called then—to assist the guests. The room rates started at $1.50.

The Inside Inn was the largest hotel in the world at the time it was built. To accommodate its many guests, the Inside Inn had 156 bell boys. Ellsworth Statler’s hospitality experience led him to create Statler Hotels, one of the United States’ earliest hotel chains.

The wood structure used a fireproof material called Sackett Patent Board, plastered over with green fire-retardant burlap wallpaper. Fireproof burlap was used on the ceilings and floors to add extra safety and comfort. The outside of the structure was given a whitewashed plaster appearance with Moorish turrets to look like most of the fair’s other structures.

The kitchen was said to be the largest in the world. For the month of June 1904, it used 12,270 dozen eggs, 1,180 bushels of potatoes, 401,618 pounds of meat, 244 barrels of flour, 9,605 pounds of butter, 8,824 gallons of milk, and 6,014 pounds of coffee. The dining room had the capacity to serve over 2,000 guests with the option of an American or European dining plan. Statler first hired male waiters but later switched to female waiters, finding them more courteous and dependable. The food was described as good and reasonably priced.

Thanks to Statler, the tourists visiting the 1904 World’s Fair were assured of a clean, safe hotel with dining facilities that ran smoothly. The fair ran from May through November. In the end, Ellsworth Statler made a tidy profit of over $360,000—not bad, considering the average American worker earned between $200 and $400 per year in 1904. At the close of the fair, the Inside Inn, like most other fair structures, was demolished and sold for scrap.

Mark Young
Mark Young, Ph.D., is director of the Hospitality Industry Archives at the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel & Restaurant Management, University of Houston.
John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO   

John@Hoganhospitality.com       Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

  •   Principal, HoganHospitality.com    Workshops, Consulting, Expert Witness Services    
  •  Co-Founder & CLO, HospitalityEducators.com, Resources in Customer Services, Training, Marketing and Sales, Profitability 
  •  Visit  johnjhogan.com for Coaching and Development

Easy-to-follow guidelines on Real Customer Service from Disney

The author of this book has been responsible in his career for the customer service at one of the world’s best known service delivery companies -DisneyWorld. He was responsible for 40,000 people in hotels, theme parks, shopping, entertainment and sports centers.

Disney’s often been used as Customer Rulesa training center for leadership and guest service and Lee Cockerell’s book on delivering sensational service is right on.

There are 39 chapters or rules in this 179 page book and they are all direct, common sense in approach in logical.

The introduction states simply “be nice”. He says this means being friendly, polite, pleasant, considerate and skilled. He cautions that rules and procedures will not work if you do not have the right people doing the right job. This is more common sense, but we have discovered in so many businesses that common sense is relatively unknown.

Examples of rules include:

  • Number 1 – customer service is not a department
  • Number 4 – do not get bored with the basics
  • Number 12- rehearse, rehearse, rehearse
  • Number 17- listen up
  • Number 24- do not make promises, make guarantees
  • Number 38- keep doing a better

The other 33 are just as direct and understandable, yet they need to be understood.

I have been in the hospitality industry my entire career and I find this a logical, easy-to-follow set of guidelines for anyone providing service to others.

Highly recommended!

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO   John@Hoganhospitality.com

Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness 

Hot Topics for Hotel Owners and Managers

  • Human Trafficking
  • Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
  • ATM and Vending Hoaxes
  • Overtime and Salary issues
  • Credit Card Fraud
  • Terrorism Awareness

I invite you to watch this short video that addresses a number of issues facing all of us today.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=T04BAd0V7uc

John J. Hogan

Hospitality Educators

, Hogan Hospitality

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/hot-topics-hotel-owners-managers-john-j-hogan-cha-cmhs-che-cho/

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