Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Iwamoto

Kevin Iwamoto

Vice President of Industry Strategy, Lanyon

As Vice President of Industry Strategy, Kevin Iwamoto guides Lanyon¡¯s overall strategy for engaging with buyers and suppliers in the meetings, events, association, and corporate travel industries. Iwamoto also works with key influencers to raise awareness of the benefits of Strategic Meetings Management (SMM). Prior to joining Lanyon, Iwamoto was Vice President of Industry Strategy with ACTIVE Network¢â Business Solutions, a leading provider of event-marketing and SMM technology for enterprise organizations, Small-to Mid-sized Businesses, and associations. Iwamoto also worked as a key manager at Hewlett-Packard on the global travel and meetings team, where he served as global corporate card, hotels, and meetings category manager. Before Hewlett-Packard, he served as a senior travel account manager with The Walt Disney Company and as a corporate sales manager with Northwest Airlines. Iwamoto is a former President and CEO of the Board of Directors for the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA). He has been honored with every major business travel industry accolade, including the GBTA¡¯s Industry Icon Award¦¡the association¡¯s highest honor. In 2004, Iwamoto was awarded the prestigious GBTA President¡¯s Award for his numerous industry contributions and leadership. In 2003, Business Travel Executive named him one of 13 Top Visionaries in business travel. In 2002, Business Travel News named him one of the top 25 most influential executives in business travel, as well as Travel Manager of the Year. Iwamoto is a sought after spokesperson representing business travel interests globally to the U.S. Congress and the media, and he frequently speaks at industry events. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from the University of Hawaii, Honolulu, and a Global Leadership Professional Masters designation from the Wharton School of Business.

Please visit www.lanyon.com for more information.

Mr. Iwamoto can be contacted at 408-202-0586 or kevin.iwamoto@lanyon.com

Coming up in March 2019...

Human Resources: An Era of Transition

Traditionally, the human resource department administers five key areas within a hotel operation - compliance, compensation and benefits, organizational dynamics, selection and retention, and training and development. However, HR professionals are also presently involved in culture-building activities, as well as implementing new employee on-boarding practices and engagement initiatives. As a result, HR professionals have been elevated to senior leadership status, creating value and profit within their organization. Still, they continue to face some intractable issues, including a shrinking talent pool and the need to recruit top-notch employees who are empowered to provide outstanding customer service. In order to attract top-tier talent, one option is to take advantage of recruitment opportunities offered through colleges and universities, especially if they have a hospitality major. This pool of prospective employees is likely to be better educated and more enthusiastic than walk-in hires. Also, once hired, there could be additional training and development opportunities that stem from an association with a college or university. Continuing education courses, business conferences, seminars and online instruction - all can be a valuable source of employee development opportunities. In addition to meeting recruitment demands in the present, HR professionals must also be forward-thinking, anticipating the skills that will be needed in the future to meet guest expectations. One such skill that is becoming increasingly valued is “resilience”, the ability to “go with the flow” and not become overwhelmed by the disruptive influences  of change and reinvention. In an era of transition—new technologies, expanding markets, consolidation of brands and businesses, and modifications in people's values and lifestyles - the capacity to remain flexible, nimble and resilient is a valuable skill to possess. The March Hotel Business Review will examine some of the strategies that HR professionals are employing to ensure that their hotel operations continue to thrive.