The Most Important Words for the Workplace or “A short course in human relations”

Several years ago, a  famous athlete was being inducted to his sports’ hall of fame and in his remarks, he commented on the need and value for team work. He quoted the often used phrase “there is no I in team” but he added there is an I in “win”.

An online search for the author of the following short piece does not bring a definite answer – there are slight variations but the message is fundamentally the same:

6. The six most important words:      “I admit I make a mistake”

5. The 5 most important words:           “You did a good job”

4. The 4 most important words:          “What is your opinion?”

3. The 3 most important words:           “If you please”

2.  The 2 most important words:          “Thank you!”

  1.  The 1 most important word:           “WE”

The least most important word: “I”

This past week another sports team reached a new pinnacle.  The message in this link is not about sports but how the practice of Leadership and Team made a difference.       5 lessons Bill Belichick’s New England Patriots can teach you about leadership

Tom Peters in many of his writings states “Leaders don’t create followers, they create more leaders. “

What are you doing at your hotel today to Build Your Great Team?

All rights reserved by John J. Hogan and this column may be included in an upcoming book on hotel management. This article may not be reproduced without the expressed permission of the author.

About John J. Hogan

John J. Hogan   John J. Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO is a successful hospitality executive, educator, author and consultant and is a frequent keynote speaker and seminar leader at many hospitality industry events. He is Co-Founder and Chief Learning Officer of, which was founded in 2010 as a solutions center for hotel owners and managers. He is also the Principal of, which offers hotel expert witness services and hospitality consulting.    Specific new services, workshops and keynote topics can be found at  

He is currently working with his partner Kathleen Hogan and others on several new projects including the HOTELIERMASTERMIND series, an eBook series with Howard Feiertag on hotel sales, two new web sites and a fresh set of Keynote and Workshop programs, hospitality services and columns.

Certified Hotel Administrator (CHA), Certified Master Hotel Supplier (CMHS), Certified Hospitality Educator (CHE), Certified Hotel Owner (CHO)

Contact: John Hogan  / 602-799-5375

Powers of Two – Answers for Hospitality and All Business Leaders – IF WE CAN DEAL WITH THE EGOS!

Our industry lost a significant and memorable leader a year ago, with the passing of Jack Vaughn, CHA.   This is a reminder that we all need each other to succeed.

Finding the Essence of Innovation in Creative PairsPowers of TWO

5.0 out of 5 stars

A persuasive examination of the very character of what makes success.

This is an interesting read and one that I found to be very real because of two sets of people I found in my hospitality career to be excellent illustrations of such key partnerships.  I will reveal them at the end of the review

In today’s overexposed world of instant communication, the notion of celebrity as a single performer or player receives an enormous amount of attention, social media in a whirl of blatant over reporting. Yet, and when one does stop to assess the results of that celebrity, performer or player, it often is the team, the band, the back of the house support and others that actually made that performer or player seem to excel.

5.0 out of 5 stars

“Powers of Two” is a persuasive examination of the very character of what makes success. It does not examine or look at entire teams, but looks at how many combinations of TWO people have reached unheard of or unexpected successes, discoveries and accomplishment over a period of several hundred years.
Using detailed research and interviews, author Joshua Shenk surveys well-known, resourceful and unusually original pairs in a range of human endeavors:
• art – Theo and Vincent Van Gogh
• aviation- Orville and Wilbur Wright
• basketball – Larry Bird and Magic Johnson
• civil rights – Ralph Abernathy and Martin Luther King, Jr.
• comedy – Dave Chappelle and Neal Brennan
• dance – George Balanchine and Suzanne Farrell
• entertainment- Jerry Lewis and Dean Martin
• finance -Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger
• music –  Lennon and McCartney
• music – David Crosby and Graham Nash
• science – Marie and Pierre Curie
• technology – Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak of Apple
• womens rights – Susan Anthony and Elizabeth Stanton

5.0 out of 5 stars

This is the 1st book I have read by Shenk, and he has a style that is interesting and engaging.He shares stories that include some we have heard (the Beatles, some TV and comedies, Jobs and Apple) but he does more than repeat yarns.He assesses the POWERS OF TWO in six areas:
1. meeting
2. confluence
3. dialectics
4. distance
5. the infinite game
6. interruptionHe looks for the connectivity that links the two-s together and his analysis makes the energy and sometimes even the conflicts make sense. He examines rivalries, competitive spirits and the overall desire to be better with another than perhaps one can be by themselves.He contrasts the member of the pair that is more the one who imagines with the one that is more the one who delivers, but he does not imply that either is more or less important than the other. This analysis is certainly not always easy, and it is a compliment to author Shenk on how well he describes all these people over time, industries, genders and passionI wonder who is the influence or other in his “two?

The teams of two I have always been impressed with:
1.   Jack Vaughn and Joe Henry in 1975 joined forces to create what had originally been envisioned as primarily a seasonal hotel in Nashville near the Grand Old Opry. This pair created a vision that grew to be the 3000 room Opryland Hotel that became world class in their 25 years together.  To those who know them, we all realize the strengths and operational skills of Joe Henry allowed Jack Vaughn to use his PR and hospitality competencies which resulted in one of the finest convention hotels in the US.
2. Around the same period, Bob Hazard and Gerry Petitt joined forces initially at Best Western to expand that brand.  When they discovered the association business model did not allow them to operate in the entrepreneurial way they preferred, they moved to Quality Courts in 1980 and together worked with others to create what became one of the worlds largest hotel franchisors, CHOICE HOTELS.  Hazard was the ultimate ideas and marketing guy, while Petitt made the systems work.
Henry, Vaughn, Petitt and Hazard were all very good at what they did, but none of them would have been nearly as successful without their key in their POWER OF TWO!
Highly recommended!
Hospitality Educators
Hogan Hospitality

Kathleen Hogan Ireland Sept 2013John Hogan Sept 2013DSCN0215John Hogan CHA CMHS CHE CHO and Kathleen Hogan MBA CHO are the co-founders of, which was created in 2010 to be a resource for hotel owners and professionals as they sought to improve market share, occupancy, operational efficiency and profitability.  The husband and wife team are transitioning the original membership site concept and evolving the business model today to a focused resource offering consulting, training, and individualized support to both hospitality and other service businesses.   Services include keynote addresses workshops, online support, metrics measurement, marketing and customer service from a group of more than a dozen experienced professionals.   While continuing to serve hospitality, the demand for these types of services is growing and can be personalized.

John Hogan is also the principal of, which provides a range of expert professional services for hotel owners, including professional development for organizations, training, consulting and expert witness services.

Contact information:  Kathleen Hogan  480-436-0283, John Hogan 602-799-5375

Recommended Reading from| Winning Every Day

Product Details

A Motivating Message of Sincerity and Inspiration,Winning Every Day
I had the opportunity to hear Lou Holtz as a keynote speaker a number of years ago,and I must say I was impressed by his message!   His message was not about sports or football, but about the challenges facing each of us in LIFE.
While I knew a bit of his coaching background, I did not know much about the man, his beliefs or his approaches. This book is an illustration of his messages that day – inspiring, down-to-earth, focused and caring. Unlike some other speakers who deliver their same speech regardless of where they are, Holtz personalized his message to the audience and that is what this book does.In 11 chapters, he outlines his style and love of coaching, but he focuses more on his attention to family, the athletes he sincerely cares about and the role of the university or    team environment. He is amusing, but sincere. His stories about attitude, perseverance, standards, pride, the lessons learned in both winning and losing are heartfelt and real.

I looked at other reviews and some of them were a bit critical about Notre Dame details or grammar, but this book is more than a coach talking about wins and championships.


It is relevant to hospitality because each of us clearly needs others – all successful hotels are teams.   This is a book about dealing with the challenges of reality in life as well as a sport and I find it excellent.


As always, comments are welcome

Dr. John Hogan CHA CHE CHO

Success does not come by accident or chance.

Contact us for assistance. or 602-799-5375 was created to help hospitality businesses address problems via a training and information resource site to help you increase your Hotel’s revenue, market share and profitability.  With more than 1,000 pages of tips, guides, best practices, strategies, plans, budgets, videos and resources, is the #1 independent website for hotel owners and managers.  This site can help you solve your problems now!      Read More  

KEYS TO SUCCESS  is the umbrella title for my 2011-2012 programs, hospitality services and columns. This year’s writings focus on a variety of topics for hotel owners, managers and professionals including both my “HOW TO” articles, HOSPITALITY CONVERSATIONS™, Lessons from the Field™, Hotel Common Sense™ , THE P-A-R PRINCIPLE™  and Principles for Success.

Feel free to share an idea for a column at   anytime or contact me regarding consulting, customized workshops, speaking engagements … And remember – we all need a regular dose of common sense,


John Hogan is a successful hospitality executive, educator, author and consultant and is a frequent keynote speaker and seminar leader at many hospitality industry events. He is CEO and Co-Founder of , which delivers focused and affordable counsel in solving specific challenges facing hospitality today.  is a membership site offering a wide range of information, forms, best practices and ideas designed to help individual hoteliers and hospitality businesses improve their market penetration, deliver service excellence and increase their profitability.
Your Hospitality Resource for the Hotel Owner, Innkeeper, Manager and Hospitality Industry Associations.