Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Carrier

Lou Carrier

President, Distinctive Hospitality Group

Lou Carrier is President of Distinctive Hospitality Management (DHM), a Massachusetts based hotel and restaurant management and consulting company as well as President of Distinctive Hospitality Group (DHG), a hospitality ownership alliance. Prior to forming DHG, Mr. Carrier was Chief Operating Officer of theWit hotel brand in Chicago, IL. In this role Lou was responsible for all branding initiatives, sales and marketing strategies and organizational structure. The hotel has been widely considered one of the most successful new hotel concepts in the US since it launched in 2009 and was the fastest hotel in North America to achieve AAA Four Diamond status. Prior to the opening of theWit hotel Mr. Carrier created the BOKX 109 American Prime restaurant concept in Newton, MA in 2008. The restaurant has won numerous awards and accolades during its first years and remains one of the highest grossing restaurants residing in an Intercontinental Hotel Group property in the Americas. Prior to returning to Massachusetts in in early 2008 Mr. Carrier spent nearly eight years in senior developmental and organizational leadership roles in the creation of the upscale Hard Rock Hotel brand. As opening General Manager of the Hard Rock Hotel @ Universal Orlando, FL Mr. Carrier delivered AAA Four Diamond status to the 650-room resort within its first six months, and for four years it was the top performing hotel in the brand. From there he was chosen as Managing Director in charge of developing the Hard Rock Hotel in San Diego, CA before being selected to coordinate the extensive expansion and upgrade to the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV in 2005 as Executive Vice President. Mr. Carrier spent a total of 8 years with Loews Hotels in Washington, DC and Florida in the roles of General Manager, Regional Director of Food and Beverage and Corporate Task Force leader. Prior to joining Loews Lou spent 9 years with Stouffer Hotels and Renaissance Hotels at their flagship property, the AAA Five Diamond Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC where he held 8 progressive management positions. Mr. Carrier’s desire for DHG is to build a portfolio of 15-20 unique hotels in the New England area over the next five years.

Mr. Carrier can be contacted at 508-651-8300 or lcarrier@distinctivehospitalitygroup.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.