Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Houdre

Herve Houdre

Regional Director of Operations & General Manager, Intercontinental New York Barclay

One of Europe and America’s most respected hoteliers, Hervé Houdré began his tenure as Regional Director of Operations and General Manager of the InterContinental New York Barclay in October of 2009. Prior to this, he held the position of General Manager of the Willard InterContinental Washington D.C. since 2004. Before coming to the United States Mr.Houdré was Chief Operating Officer of Kempinski Hotels & resorts and General Manager of famed Parisian hotels, the Plaza Athénée and the Hôtel de Crillon. Mr. Houdré was named "2006 Independent Hotelier of the World" by HOTELS magazine. He serves on the Boards and Executive Committees of the NYC Hotel Association and NYC & Company (Convention & Visitors Bureau) as well as on the Board of GSTC (Global Sustainable Tourism Council). A leader in Sustainable Hospitality. Mr. Houdré published Sustainable Hospitality©, a white paper utilized by Cornell University’s Center for Hospitality Research. He has co-edited a book named Hotel Sustainable Development: Principles and Best Practices, published in 2011 by American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute, together with Prof AJ Singh from Michigan State University. Mr. Houdré recently joined the Environment and Engineering Committee of AH&LA (American Hotel & Lodging Association). Mr. Houdré’s efforts have been highlighted in a broad array of media in the US and abroad. His leadership achieved the 2009 Condé Nast Traveler World Savers Award, 2009 DC Mayor’s Award for Environmental Excellence and DC Chamber of Commerce 2009 Business of the Year. He received the New York chapter Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International 2012 General Manager of the year award.

Mr. Houdre can be contacted at 212-906-3100 or herve.houdre@ihg.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.