Marriott on the Move




In Good Company

Posted:10/06/201112:18 PM


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To stay in business for almost 85 years, well, you know you’re doing something right.  To stay in business for this long and be recognized as one of the most ethical companies, that tells me we’re doing a lot of things right.

Ethisphere logo

For the fourth year, Ethisphere Institute named Marriott as one of the World's Most Ethical Companies, selecting us for engaging in business practices and initiatives that are instrumental to our success, benefitting the community, and raising the bar for ethical standards within the industry.  That’s great praise and we’re in great company.  


Ed Ryan, our general counsel, was invited by The Ethisphere Institute to join representatives from companies such as PepsiCo, GE and Ford in ringing the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange.  Through Ed’s leadership, “how we do business” remains true to my father’s founding principles.  

Marriott has grown from two employees in 1927 to over 300,000 today.  We’ve expanded from a nine-stool root beer stand to about 3700 hotels in 71 countries.  We’ve been able to do this because of our core values one of which is conducting business with integrity.  We believe that how we do business is as important as the business we do. 

Upholding high ethical standards is important to us.  That’s why I applaud all of our associates and business partners worldwide for helping us hold true to our values.  We’re honored to be in “good company” with the world’s most ethical businesses.

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

Click here to learn more about Ethisphere's 2011 rankings and methodology


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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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Fond Farewell to a Marriott Friend

Posted:07/25/201110:27 AM

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On July 6, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal published extensive obituaries on my friend, George Lang, one of America’s most successful restaurateurs.

George Lang

George had a truly fascinating and exciting life.  He was born in Hungary in 1924.  He was Jewish and escaped a Nazi forced-labor camp and imminent execution in the Second World War.  He came to New York with no money, but with hopes of becoming a concert violinist.   

When his violin career did not work out, he pursued a career in restaurants.  He worked for Restaurant Associates and was instrumental in establishing the Four Seasons Restaurant in New York City, one of the world’s most famous.  George also established and ran the famous Café des Artistes Restaurant in New York.  He wrote a lot of cookbooks and was one of the most renowned restaurateurs of all time.  

George Lang's Book Cover

When he left Restaurant Associates, we got together.  As we talked we came to the conclusion that it might be a good idea for George to establish a consulting business and I offered us up as the first client.  At that time, we were big-time in the airline catering business.  We just acquired the Qantas Airline account at our London Flight Kitchen at Heathrow.  Qantas flights to Australia were, of course, a long haul and very expensive in first class.  They were charging a lot and expected the highest level of service.

George volunteered to go to London and create a very high-end food service for Qantas in-flight catering.  He not only designed it, he stayed on in the kitchen for many weeks, training the chefs and ensuring that they did an outstanding job. 

When we opened our Marriott hotel in Budapest, Hungary, I was there for the opening and George showed up.  He was there opening a very famous restaurant in Budapest and joined us for dinner.  

He was a great friend and George and I worked together on many projects through the years.  I will miss him.  He made an outstanding contribution to the restaurant industry for over 40 years.  And he certainly helped me out when I really needed it the most with Qantas in London.  

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

George Lang Obituary (The New York Times)


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"Hands-On" Teaching is Key to Success

Posted:07/18/201111:17 PM


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When I served on the General Motors board, I had a chance to work with Bob Lutz.  Bob came on board as Vice Chairman of General Motors, primarily working on product development.  He’s written a new book, which has been covered in The Wall Street Journal.  The excerpts tell about how Bob came on board GM … found that their culture was somewhat stifling.  They had a lot of meetings, they didn’t make a lot of decisions, everybody was nice to everybody, but not much got done.  

Bob Lutz's book

Then he compared the General Motors management style with that of Ferdinand Piëch, the chairman of Volkswagen, who was an autocrat who ordered people what to do and they got it done whether they thought it was right or not.  

Bob then went on to talk about how he tried to put in a new approach to management at General Motors.  He said working in product development he got some cars in from the competitors -- some of the best: Audis, Toyota and Lexus -- took his people into the shop floor and showed them how to better design products for General Motors.  His bottom line was: it’s better to teach people and train people, rather than to order them around or to sit around and talk about this project without making decisions.  

His bias for teaching and training is a similar bias that we have had at Marriott for some 84 years.  We know that if we train and teach our associates, not only do they serve the guests better, but they also do a much better job of staying with the company.  They feel comfortable in their work, they feel that they have entered the ladder of success and can go up that ladder to newer and better positions.  

GM Flint Engine Plant


In my opinion, Bob’s on the right track.  Teaching and training is far better than sitting around and pondering and not doing very much … or being an autocrat and ordering everybody what to do.  

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

Download book excerpt



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You Can't Lead With Your Feet on the Desk

Posted:03/02/201111:33 AM

You Can't Lead With Your Feet On The Desk Ed Fuller, our president and managing director of international lodging, knows first hand that you can’t lead with your feet on the desk. You’ve got to get those boots on the ground, as Ed says, and I agree with him.  Ed has shown that by just returning from Egypt where we have seven hotels.  When the recent civil unrest unfolded, he knew there was no substitute for being there in person to help our hotel owners and associates through this very difficult, challenging time. 

Ed has just written a new book called — what else? — You Can’t Lead With Your Feet on the Desk.  Among the many great management tips he shares are three that I recommend to you:

One: to respect is to inspire.  The hotel business is all about service, which means it’s all about motivating our frontline people. We can see to it that you get a comfortable bed, but if the person at the front desk hasn’t made you feel very, very welcome, the bed won’t feel great. A salary won’t motivate people to deliver service; they need to believe that they will rise through the organization and find new opportunities if they really take care of our customers. The respect we show our people through a policy that “promotes from within” pays dividends in the experience that our guests enjoy.

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An Exciting Future for Marriott Vacation Club International

Posted:02/14/2011 8:30 PM


Hello, I’m Bill Marriott and it is a true pleasure to speak with you about the exciting future of Marriott Vacation Club International.

We’ve just announced plans to split Marriott International into two separate, publicly traded companies by the end of 2011. One will be focused on lodging and the other on timeshare. We believe it’s a win-win for both companies.

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Encouraging Our Associates to "TakeCare" in 2011

Posted:02/08/2011 4:11 PM

Harbor Beach Marriott Wellness Studio In the New Year, many of us make resolutions to eat healthier, exercise more and even lose some weight.  Here at Marriott, our people have pledged to “Maintain, Don’t Gain.”  It’s part of our TakeCare Wellness Program that started last year.  The goal is to help our people make healthy choices to improve overall wellness for themselves and their families.  We began this initiative with informational sessions called “Choose Health Every Day,” and we kicked off our first TakeCare National Challenge this past September. 
Throughout our hotels, we’ve seen new enhancements such as healthier options in our employee cafeterias, wellness newsletters and weight loss challenges.  Many of our associates are taking daily Wellness Walks either around the hotel or nearby area, and some of our hotels are hosting team stretches during their brief stand-up meetings.

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Marriott Opens Doors to a World of Opportunity

Posted:02/02/2011 4:45 PM

Marriott Opens Doors to a World of Opportunity People often ask me what motivates me every day to go to the office, when other business leaders at my age have long retired. The answer for me is simple. I know that every hotel that Marriott opens, whether it's in Indianapolis or India, is opening doors to a world of opportunity.

Creating these opportunities for our people, guests, owners, investors, and communities is the purpose that drives me personally and has made Marriott successful for more than eight decades. It's our reason for being, our unifying mission and the unique value we deliver to people and communities around the world.

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Renovating Our Digital Front Door,

Posted:11/14/200910:12 PM

Mcom_HP_102909 When I started in the hotel business 52 years ago, the first impression customers had of our hotels was the lobby when they walked through the front doors. But in this digital age, often the first impression comes when they visit It's our digital front door.

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Marriott Celebrates 20 Years in Eastern Europe

Posted:10/20/2009 6:52 PM

Warsaw Ribbon Cut captioned This month we're celebrating the 20th anniversary of the opening of the Warsaw Marriott hotel in Poland.  We opened the hotel back in October of 1989, about the time the Iron Curtain was beginning to fall.  It was a milestone property for us because it was our 500th hotel worldwide and also the first Western-managed hotel in the city of Warsaw.

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

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