What Happens When Potential Gets a Chance

September 22, 2015
For young people today, jobs can be a very big deal. It’s often tough to get a stable one, especially when the odds are stacked against you. That’s the way it was for a young woman I recently heard about: Nicola. She lives in the United Kingdom and she had...

When Honesty Makes You Stand Out

August 4, 2015
Many years ago, a few Marriott International executives waited in our boardroom to update me on a hotel project I was really excited about. The group apparently killed time by talking about what a terrible idea my project was, but when I walked in and enthusiastically asked, “So, how’s my...

Don't Rely on Data Alone. Trust Your Gut.

July 28, 2015
Anyone in business today is swamped with data. This chart shows you one thing while another can totally contradict it. When I stepped down as President and CEO, I said the hotel business was getting too complicated, to which my long-time assistant Phyllis said, “It’s your own fault. You made...

Thomas Jefferson

June 17, 2015
I recently read a book called Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power by Jon Meacham. To me, this book is a wonderful insight into the life and person of Thomas Jefferson. I’ve always known him to be brilliant and wide-ranging in his interests. I knew he wrote the Declaration of...

People of Marriott International

May 31, 2015
Few things are more satisfying to me than the terrific blend of people we have at Marriott. The first great team at Marriott was my dad and mom, and over the years they have been followed by many passionate teams that worked wonderfully across generations, gender, race, ethnicity, and many...

My Early Memorial Day

May 25, 2015
As we completed our annual shareholders meeting and I joined our senior leadership on the 12th floor patio of our JW Marriott Hotel in downtown Washington, 16 flights of WWII war birds flew by. They included P51’s, B24’s, B17’s, a B29, a Catalina Flying Boat and several navy fighters. It...

Finding New Ways to Serve

May 18, 2015
Volunteering at the Atlanta Food Bank and Habitat for Humanity I have always enjoyed giving back whether it’s hammering at Habitat for Humanity or bagging groceries at the Atlanta Food Bank. Ever since the beginning of our company, our associates have been putting people first, and this includes the communities...

Remembering My Mom on Mother's Day

May 8, 2015
Mom & me, 1936 This Mother's Day, I thought I'd share some memories of my mother who passed away 15 years ago at the age of 92. Alice Sheets Marriott was truly an amazing woman. Her father died in 1919 from the flu epidemic following the First World War. Her...

How Culture Lives On

May 3, 2015
I spent some time in March at our Camelback Inn in Scottsdale, Arizona. It was a wonderful stay at the historic hotel, which opened in the early 1930’s making it the oldest J.W. Marriott hotel in our system. We bought it in 1967 and our family has been going there...

Selling Underwear to Lumberjacks

April 26, 2015
It’s not quite the same as selling ice cubes to Eskimos, but selling long, woolen black underwear to lumberjacks in the hot summer comes pretty close. I’ve heard this story since I was a little boy. Let me tell you what my dad did to pull it off. My dad...