Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Snyder

Mari Snyder

VP Social Responsibility & Community Engagement, Marriott International, Inc.

Mari Snyder is responsible for developing Marriott's social responsibility strategy and its global implementation and, in her role on the company's Global Green Council, collaborates enterprise-wide to develop Marriott's sustainability strategy and practices, in support of the Council's executive co-chairs. Ms. Snyder manages Marriott's portfolio of innovative environmental initiatives, including a rainforest preservation project in the Amazon and a water conservation/micro-enterprise project in Southwest China. Ms. Snyder's team establishes and manages the company's community partnerships, corporate contributions, disaster relief, associate volunteerism and stakeholder engagement programs. She reports the company's sustainability and social responsibility results. Ms. Snyder joined Marriott in 1999. Marriott International, Inc. is a leading lodging company with nearly 3,700 lodging properties in 72 countries and territories. Marriott employs approximately 129,000 employees and is recognized by FORTUNE® as one of the best companies to work for and one of the world's most admired companies. Prior to joining Marriott, Ms. Snyder worked for M&M/MARS for nine years. In addition to serving on the Board of Directors of Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts, Ms. Snyder serves on the Board of Advisors of the Universities at Shady Grove, University System of Maryland and the Business Advisory Council of St. Bonaventure University.

Ms. Snyder can be contacted at 301-380-2702 or mari.snyder@marriott.com

Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.