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Fairfield Inn & Suites Prepares Parents for College

Posted:08/30/201110:27 AM


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As soon as Labor Day hits, it’s back to school.

Campus Visit

I’ll be speaking to students at Brigham Young University this year, where many in our family have attended.  I’ll also be speaking to students at Cornell which has a really great hospitality school. I’m looking forward to being back on campus and kicking some fall leaves.  

Today, the process of applying to college can be really stressful.  Parents sweat the costs. Students worry about whether they’ll get admitted or not. But the search process can be fun if you turn it into a family adventure. Colleges are beautiful places from the brick sidewalks to the bell towers. You can take your kids to see the library and instill some worldly wisdom. 

Many of our 670 Fairfield Inn & Suites hotels are located near colleges and universities.  So, they’ll be hosting an awful lot of families this Fall.  To get ready, the brand conducted a survey of parents. Most parents said they plan to visit as many as four colleges with their kids and ten percent expect to visit more than seven.  That’s a lot of places.  It was great to learn that 40 percent of parents said traveling to visit colleges was a great opportunity to bond with their children before they head off for their freshmen year.


Screen shot 2011-08-30 at 5.18.30 PM If you’re planning college visits, checkout Fairfield Inn & Suites College Tours. You’ll find great tips from The Princeton Review, a leading authority in this area, about navigating the college selection process.  You can even enter a sweepstakes. Winners will get $2,000 to help defray some of those college costs.

 

So, go online and read the tips.  Here’s a few: 

    - take the campus tour
    - check-in with your admissions office
    - venture out on your own

Post a comment with some of your tips and experiences. 

I’m Bill Marriott and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the move.

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Making the Tough Call

Posted:08/22/2011 3:28 PM

 

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I bought President Bush’s autobiography, Decision Points, a while ago and during some quiet time over the Fourth of July weekend had an opportunity to read it.

Decision Points Cover

It was obvious that President Bush wrote the book himself.  It included many wonderful, personal stories about him, his courtship of Laura, his drinking problem in his early years, and his very strong, loving relationship with this mother and dad.

I was anxious to learn about the background for his decision to invade Iraq, in search of weapons of mass destruction, since none were found after the fall of the country.  

Bush said he relied on the strong recommendation of the NIE, National Intelligence Estimate, that emphatically stated that Iraq had chemical and biological weapons, as well as missiles with ranges in excess of UN restrictions.  If left unchecked, he believed Iraq would have had a nuclear weapon during this decade. 

In the fall of 2002, Congress supported his congressional war resolution.  The Senate passed it 77 to 23, the House 296 to 133.  Later that fall, the UN Security Council passed a similar war resolution unanimously, 15 to nothing.

Reports of Iraq’s WMD continued to pour in from around the world.  When Bush made the decision to invade, he wrote: “Given everything we knew, allowing Saddam to stay in power would have amounted to an enormous gamble.  I would have had to bet that either every major intelligence agency was wrong or that Saddam would have a change of heart.  After seeing the horror of 9/11, that was not a chance I was willing to take.  Military action was my last resort.  But, I believed it was necessary.”

My major learning from reading Decision Points was the great difficulty the President had in gaining consensus from his White House staff and his cabinet on major decisions that confronted him.  

Frequently, his team ended up with conflicting recommendations, leaving the final decision to the President himself. 

As we know, he was willing to make some tough calls – mostly without the full support of his team.  Many decisions were good and he freely admits that some were not.  But he made the call and he stuck to it.  

While many Americans are still critical of the President’s decision, after reading the book, I believe history will be more kind to him for his strong leadership. 

I’d love to hear what you’re reading this summer.  Send me some recommendations.  

I’m Bill Marriott and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the Move.

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 P.S. Here's what you've been reading.  It's compiled from your comments. -- Bill 

"Nothing to Fear" by Adam Cohen; "Try Known and Unknown" by Donald Rumsfeld; "The Miracle of Freedom: 7 Tipping Points that Saved the World" by Chris Stewart; "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks" by Rebecca Skloot; “Lion In the White House: A Life of Theodore Roosevelt” by Aida Donald; "The Pillars of the Earth" by Ken Follett; "The Kennedy Legacy" by Edward "Ted" Kennedy; "Unbroken" by Laura Hillenbrand; "1421 - The Year That China Discovered America" by Gavin Menzies; "The Mastery of Love" by Don Miguel Ruiz; "Man's Search for Meaning" by Viktor E. Frankl; "Cleopatra" by Stacy Schiff; "Goodbye To A River" by John Graves; "The Innocent Man" by John Grisham; "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett; "Abraham Lincoln" by James M. McPherson; "The Ark of Millions of Years" by E.J. Clark and B. Alexander Agnew; "Cutting for Stone" by Abraham Verghese; "Enchantment" by Guy Kawasaki; "John Adams" by David McCullough; "The Great Gatsby" by F. Scott Fitzgerald; "Beyond Basketball" by Mike Krzyzewski.

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A Virtual Lobby Tour

Posted:08/15/201110:44 AM

 

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A lot has changed since we built our first hotel in 1957.  I remember physically moving furniture to decide the right spot.  We didn’t have a lot of choices on fabrics and designs. Now, we can design lobbies and rooms by using  “virtual” showrooms.  The hammer and the nail have given way to a mouse and monitor.  It’s really high tech.

Click on the video and you’ll see what I mean.  

Walking through a virtual lobby takes a little getting used to.  Some of the furniture is real, some is not.  It’s like being on a movie set.  In fact, we are using movie animation software.  Our design team is like a “special effects” production unit.  They create giant printouts and add real furniture to give a 3D visualization. 

The visual impact allows our executive team to make changes.  With a click of the mouse, we’re able to change the wall color and carpet.  In a matter of months – not years - we can redesign our spaces and bring the latest styles and technologies to our guests.  

We’re certainly in a competitive business and it seems like it’s all about speed to market.  So, this summer check out our latest animated production coming to a Marriott hotel near you. 

I’m Bill Marriott and thank you for helping me keep Marriott on the move.

Read article for more information

 

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Blogging with "The Boss Man" - Our Summer Interns

Posted:08/08/201110:24 AM

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I started out at Marriott much the same way our young people do today.  I worked after school and during the summer.  It wasn’t called an internship back then, but I knew it was a great way to get experience and learn the business.  When I was 14, I stapled invoices after school in the Hot Shoppes accounting office.  

Summer Interns

Today, when walking around hotels and headquarters, I see a lot of bright, young excited faces.  A few interns are helping me post this blog.  They want us to add more pictures.  So we took a picture and wham!  It appeared instantly on one of their Facebook pages with the caption: “Hanging out with the boss man after recording his blog.”

They took a picture of the boardroom, too.  I don’t know why anybody would want that, but they did.  Long gone are the quiet interns who just put invoices together. 

While a majority of our interns come from hospitality schools, many don't.  I knew nothing about hotels when we opened our first one, but I was sure anxious to learn.   I certainly learned on the job much the same way our interns learn when they arrive at our company.  

Marriott Boardroom

In the coming weeks, we will say goodbye to our summer interns.  Hopefully, they will come away with a better understanding of how hotels operate.  And, equally as important, we will learn from the next generation what truly "turns them on." 

As “the Boss Man,” I want to say thank you to all of you. 

I’m Bill Marriott and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the Move.

Leave a comment telling me about your internship.

 

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Good Burgers and Good Business

Posted:08/01/201110:56 AM

 

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I was raised on good hamburgers and I just love a good burger.  It takes me back to my boyhood days and the fun of eating in one of my parents’ Hot Shoppes restaurants.

 

In-N-Out Burger

When I travel out west, I try to pop into In-N-Out Burger, a regional chain located primarily in California and Arizona in the Southwest.  In-N-Out burgers are great and their “Animal Style” burger really hits the spot.  My father would have loved In-N-Out Burger because they cook their burgers to order and they use the best ingredients. 

Hot Shoppes Car Hop

Back in the heyday of our Hot Shoppes restaurants, our menu had more than 300 items.  We insisted that every selection be fresh and always available.  It was that customer–oriented philosophy that helped make Hot Shoppes successful and laid the foundation for our global hotel business today.

Our attention to detail carries over to our Marriott sales force.  They’ve helped In-N-Out Burger expand in Texas by offering one-stop shopping.  Let me explain.  Our sales representative has arranged for their team to stay at multiple Courtyards and Residence Inns.  We’re the only hotel company that operates this way.  

In N Out   Hot Shoppes Exterior

Before, our corporate customers would have to call each individual hotel to book a meeting or block of rooms.  Now, they can make a single call to one of our sales offices and shop and compare all of our hotels across our family of brands and find just exactly what they need for their business.  

Residence Inn Loves In-N-Out

That’s how our customers, like In-N-Out, told us they want to do business and we listened. 

We began transforming our sales organization many years ago and now have eight offices around the U.S.  It’s changing the game and making it easier than ever for our customers to book our hotels.  We’re selling them the way they want to be sold.

At Marriott, we know a good burger and good customers.  Thank you In-N-Out Burger.  We’re certainly glad we can help you expand your terrific business.  

I’m Bill Marriott and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the Move.

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I'm Bill Marriott, Chairman & CEO of Marriott International.

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