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Hospitality CEO's Score High in Emotional Intelligence, are Self-Motivators,
Team Players and Excellent at Building Rapport According to
New HVS Executive Search Analysis


30 AUGUST 2012 - Detailed analysis of over 420 hospitality leaders shows that CEOs in this sector are characterised by having a high emotional intelligence coupled with above-average task-orientation, are self-motivators, team players and excellent at building rapport.

A study by HVS Executive Search, using its own proprietary assessment tool 20|20 SkillsTM developed specifically for the hospitality industry, included over 420 global hospitality leaders (CEOs, Managing Directors and Regional Vice Presidents). The analysis created an aggregate profile of their predominant skills and character traits.1

The research shows that hospitality CEOs typically have an optimistic view and healthy appetite to explore the unknown, believe in their ability to positively influence outcomes and have an innate nature to deal with change. Such profiles typically enjoy a challenge and are highly task-orientated.

“An overview of the skill sets, behaviours, abilities and character traits that are highly likely in a leader of a hospitality organisation gives us a real insight when it comes to recruiting successors that are a good personality match for a company,” commented report author Thomas Mielke, HVS Executive Search associate director.

“This technique, used as a part of our complete recruitment process, also enables us to identify the type of person who is likely to succeed as a future leader of this sector.”

Ten performance traits are assessed in the survey, which shows that rather than being experts in a single, rigid discipline, executives at the helm of global hotel companies score highly across a range of disciplines. However, they receive the highest scores in the areas of ‘leadership’ and ‘group process’ (85 out of a possible 100 points for both).

Leadership refers to a set of attitudes and behaviours that reflect an executive’s capacity to embrace a company’s vision, formulate actions and goals, and further this vision. It also reflects an ability to articulate the company vision so that others are inspired to follow.

The dimension of ‘group process’ relates to the set of attitudes and behaviours that foster a collaborative work environment and are characteristic of executives with high morale and a commitment to tasks and goals.

The CEOs demonstrate they are individuals who act as catalysts or facilitators. They consider themselves an integral part of their team and enjoy their responsibility to inspire and direct employees and the organisation. They also have a tendency to be concerned with group maintenance – for example they show concern about workload, and aim to set realistic goals.

The HVS Executive Search analysis suggests that hospitality CEOs understand their own limitations and are not prone to political posturing – success comes through gaining commitment and support from the team. Being accessible, giving credit where it is deserved, providing training and coaching opportunities and promoting responsibility are therefore priorities of a typical CEO.

“It seems then that hotel companies are in good hands. Today’s hospitality CEOs are also not satisfied with just a ‘good’ performance, strive to be the best and value the competitive spirit. To do so they rely on their strong personal skills to get the support from their staff. Their innate ability to deal with others is hereby extremely helpful as is their non-dogmatic approach, reliability and concern about perceived and actual fairness,” Mielke added.

[1] 20|20 SkillsTM assessments are designed specifically for the service industries and provide feedback on 10 crucial performance characteristics. The programme is grounded in Item Response Theory (IRT) to ensure superior psychometrics and legal defensibility.

Top 7 Traits of a Successful Hospitality CEO

1. Leadership
2. Group Process
3. Sense of Humour
4. Creativity
5. Self Efficacy
6. Ethical Awareness
7. Service Orientation

HVS Executive Search is the premier executive search and advisory firm providing consulting services to leaders of the hotel, restaurant, gaming and real estate industries. Practice areas include senior-level executive search, mid-management recruitment, compensation consulting and performance management. Its offices are located in New York, London, Hong Kong, Moscow, Mumbai and New Delhi.

HVS Executive Search is a division of HVS, a fully integrated consulting firm focused on the hospitality industry. Founded in 1980, HVS is the world's leading specialist in hospitality consulting. With 30 offices globally, HVS offers unparalleled worldwide market expertise

Linda Pettit
Tilburstow Media Partners
Tel: 01342 832866

Pooja Vir
Director of Marketing, HVS Executive Search
Tel: 0207 878 7756
Mobile: 07726 479339


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Also See: Public Display of (Board) Affection: U.S. Hotel Boards Prioritize Self-Evaluation and Communication; Sunstone Hotel Investors leaps to the top in the 14th annual HVS Executive Search Top-Performing Board analysis of U.S. public hotel companies / August 2012

HVS Executive Search Presents Top-Performing CEO Award to Monty J. Bennett Of Ashford Hospitality Trust; Top-Performing Board Awarded to Sunstone Hotel Investors / June 2012

HVS Executive Search Presents Top-Performing CEO Award to Mark S. Hoplamazian of Hyatt Hotels Corporation and Top-Performing Board to LaSalle Hotel Properties / June 2011

HVS Executive Search presents Top-Performing CEO Award to Jeffery Boyd of and Stephen Holmes of Wyndham Worldwide & Top-Performing Board Award to Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. / June 2010

HVS International Honors the Board of Directors of Four Seasons Hotels Corp. and Hilton's Steve Bollenbach with Lodging Leadership Awards / June 2006

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