Editorial Board   Guest Author

Dr. Tinnish

Susan Tinnish

Advisory Group Chair, Vistage

Sue Tinnish, Ph.D., is a seasoned hospitality professional who has been writing for HotelExecutive since 2013. She has a diverse background in hospitality and business with specific skills in leadership, formulating strategy, managing change, building teams, and delivering on strategic and tactical projects.

Dr. Tinnish has been selected to serve as a Vistage leader (Chair). Since 1957, Vistage has been helping CEOs improve and grow their businesses. Fundamental to Vistage’s success is the convening of non-competing peer advisory boards where business leaders can gain different perspectives and seek clarity to their pressing issues, decisions and challenges. Sue will be assembling a group in Chicago - which she hopes will include representation of the hotel sector.

Prior to her work coaching and working with CEOs though Vistage, Dr. Tinnish worked as a Strategist at Minding Your Business (MYB). MYB works to develop relevant, meaningful and sustainable approaches to strategic planning, branding, marketing / communications strategies, customer/member initiatives, plus helping organizations engage with their audiences through re-engineered meetings and events. Their primary customer base is hospitality organizations, associations, destination marketing organizations with a smattering of corporate clients.

Prior to that Dr. Tinnish served as the dean of the Kendall College School of Hospitality Management and the International School of Business. As Dean, she oversaw and managed all aspects of the Schools including faculty and curriculum selection, assessment and program direction. She served as a member of Kendall's academic leadership team. Initially joining Kendall as a faculty member, Dr. Tinnish taught courses on leadership, organizational behavior, sustainability, meeting management and human resource. She started working in the hospitality industry after leaving a successful career in financial services (corporate sales), concentrating on meetings and events. Dr. Tinnish served as President of the Meeting Professionals International (MPI) Chicago area chapter and was recognized by her peers with numerous awards including being inducted to the Chapter Hall of Fame.

A highly regarded thought leader in the hospitality industry, Dr. Tinnish is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and events. Beyond her contributions to the HotelExecutive, some of her recent publications include: Embedding Sustainability into a Hotel: One leader's view of the creation of a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program, co-written with Dr. Kevin Lynch appearing in Sustainable Hotels: Exploring the Opportunities for Value Creation, Greenleaf Publishing, 2016. Also appearing in the same book is her chapter, A Strategic Decision Framework for Hotel Managers Embarking on a Sustainable Supply Chain Management Initiative. She also contributed two chapters (Designing the Meeting Experience and Strategic Meetings: Aligning with Organizational Priorities) to Professional Meeting Management: A Guide to Convention, Meetings and Events, 6th edition.

Dr. Tinnish earned her PhD from Benedictine University in Lisle, Illinois. She holds an M.B.A. with a concentration in finance and marketing from University of Chicago's Booth School and a B.S. in communication studies from Northwestern University.

Please visit http://www.vistage.com for more information.

Dr. Tinnish can be contacted at 847-404-7325 or Sue.Tinnish@vistagechair.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.