In Europe, Featured, HSMAI, HSMAI, Marketing, News, News items, Travel>Hotels

Eric is currently living in London and is an Executive Director at Polypol, a management and consultancy firm. Until end of 2020, he lived in Zurich, and was working for Hyatt as Senior Vice President Commercial. He was responsible for developing and managing the regional Brand and Marketing strategy, Sales Operations and Revenue in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and South West Asia. Born in France, Eric is an MBA graduate of Drexel University, Philadelphia, where he began his career in operational marketing. He further developed his education attending Stanford University and Northwestern University – Kellogg School of Management Executive Programmes. He lived in the USA, the Middle East, Singapore, the United Kingdom and Switzerland. Before joining Hyatt in 2012, Eric was the Director of Group Marketing and Call Center Management at Avis Budget Group.

Furthermore, Eric is the newly elected Chair of the HSMAI Europe Marketing & Branding Advisory Board for 2022 – 2023, and has been active with HSMAI Europe for two years.

Q: The last 18 months have been extremely challenging for everyone. What helped you cope with the uncertainty and stress?

A: It is always about people. People at work and people in your life, family and friends. I am pretty much an altruist so I get my energy and peace by listening to people and trying to help them. I made sure I stayed opened to others and did not close myself to the world especially when the world was starting to lock down.

Q: What skills do you think will become more relevant in the years to come?

A: One needs to be versatile and agile. I would recommend to learn as much as one can; be a sponge.

Q: The pandemic forced us to reconsider leadership. What are your thoughts and how have you adapted?

A: This is a good question as meeting people was almost impossible. I do believe you are a good leader if you are close to your team and you listen to them (not only what they have to say but by observing them). I suppose I increased communication with the team and I tried to be even more caring.

Q: The entire industry faces the challenge of attracting and retaining talent. Do you have any thoughts on this that you would like to share with us?

A: I believe every industry faces the issue of attracting and retaining talents, looking at what happened in the USA with massive resignations. Business leaders have to rethink how they manage their employees, people have changed and want different things in their lives today… Work is not everything…

The hospitality is such a fun industry, it is all about people and travel. My background or education is not hotel related but I always loved the hotel world and I decided to work for a hotel group. And I loved every minute of it.

Q: How would someone who knows you describe you?

A: Always difficult to answer such question but I think they would say balanced, fun and caring.

Q: Where does the next trip go, privately or at work?

A: My next trip is taking me to Zurich for a family reunion, and preparing Christmas, which is always a big affair.

Q: Describe a perfect weekend for you.

A: It would be spending time with my husband and my dog; going to a new restaurant, a long walk in Hyde Park and maybe seeing a concert, a show or a movie.

Q: Is there a book or podcast that recently inspired you and that you would recommend?

A: So many books to recommend… I just finished Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty, by Patrick Radden Keefe; heavy and disturbing…

On a lighter note, any book by Donna Leon. She writes thrillers, but with Venice as the main character, one of my cherished cities.

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