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April 2021

Leisure & Hospitality 2.0: Leadership Toolkit

Anyone who knows me well would describe me as a “to the point” person, so let me get right to it. The past twelve months have been horrendous on so many levels for the leisure and hospitality industry. This blog’s goal is very simple; share four pieces of content that I was fortunate enough to read and/or listen to over the past year covering leadership, business strategy, emotional intelligence, empathy, ambiguity, and resilience. Every decision-maker should have this information in their mental toolbox as we enter leisure and hospitality 2.0.  

Masters of Scale Podcast; an interview with Brian Chesky, CEO of Airbnb (4/13/20)

When the global pandemic emerged, Airbnb was sitting on over $1 billion of host revenue; monies paid by customers and being held for Airbnb hosts for upcoming travel. With a non-refundable policy in place, Airbnb had to make unprecedented business decisions taking into consideration their employees, guests, travel hosts, and investors. This worthwhile listen will provide an inside look at how one of the leading CEOs within the travel industry contemplated extraordinary decisions, pivoted on their business strategy, and maintained a positive outlook during one of the darkest periods the travel and tourism industry has ever experienced.  

Click here to listen to the podcast interview.

Twitter; a message to Marriott International associates from President and CEO, Arne Sorenson (3/19/20)

Over my twenty-plus years of consulting within the leisure and hospitality industry, I have had the fortunate ability to call hundreds of leaders, clients, and friends. To experience true leadership, “watch” (do not just listen) to this video message Arne posted in one of the darkest times in modern history. His genuine concern for the health and safety of his 140,000-person workforce, transparency about what is to come, and the genuine and empathetic delivery brought tears to my eyes. Arne, rest in peace.

Click here to view the tweet.

A Beautiful Constraint; by Adam Morgan & Mark Barden

When it comes to the subject of business strategy, I have found that most mainstream books regurgitate the same concepts, but there are still a special few I come across that are exceptional. A Beautiful Constraint draws on business case studies from diverse fields, including education, automobile engineering, supply-chain management, and memorable marketing campaigns providing recognizable examples of turning constraints into game-changing business opportunities. The tools and concepts introduced in this book provide a very timely construct as we enter the next normal. 

Click here to access the book.

Daily Podcast by The New York Times; an interview with Donald G. McNeil Jr. (2/27/20)

Like most people at the time (last February), I was searching for as much information as possible to prepare and protect my family and business for the impending global pandemic. Donald G. McNeil Jr., a respected science and health reporter for the New York Times, was being interviewed on The Daily podcast; the ominous discussion covered topics that included the estimated mortality rates (2.5% at the time), a slow vaccine timeline, lack of ventilators, and the imminent realities around business shutdown and quarantine. My recommendation in listening to this piece is not to re-hash a horrible moment in time but rather celebrate how far we have come in one year.

Click here to listen to the full podcast.

I hope you enjoy these recommendations and please stay safe and sane.