Building relationships strengthens your business

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RACHEL HUMPHREY
AAHOA Interim President & CEO

There are many industries that make up America’s thriving small-business sector, but ours is undoubtedly one of the most unique. Our industry is complex; hoteliers have to be experts in a myriad of areas, from franchising to forming vendor partnerships to property management and development. Each and every one of our businesses is made up of so many moving parts, but at the heart of it all is the person-to-person relationships that keep each of these parts working.

After witnessing the industry grow and develop over the past 20 years, I can say with certainty that hoteliers who have a strong network have a strong business. It’s essential for hoteliers to foster relationships that bring real value to their businesses. This means garnering a good group of peers who you can learn with and from, meeting a variety of vendors and continuing the conversation past the trade show floor, and actively bolstering your connections to brand representatives. These are the people who you will be working with as you grow your business, and it’s imperative that you build a strong relationship with them to ensure that you’re on top of upcoming industry trends and always getting the best deals to boost your bottom line.

It’s true that networking can seem daunting, but being an AAHOA Member makes it easy. With more than 200 events held all across the country each year, there are always opportunities for members to come together to strengthen the ties they have and form new ones. Making new connections in person is so much more effective than sending an email or making a cold call. This is your chance to investigate first hand who offers the right partnerships for your business and which deals might not be the right fit. Whether it’s a Town Hall, Regional, one of the legislative days in Washington, D.C., or our annual convention, every AAHOA event is a great place to connect with other hoteliers and representatives from each facet of the industry.

As we head into 2020, it’s a perfect time to evaluate the status of your business relationships and consider ways to improve them. Each relationship you foster is another tool you have at your disposal to help the success and posterity of your business, especially relationships with your peers. Learning from your fellow hoteliers will always be one of your best resources and I urge every AAHOA Member to not let that opportunity pass you and your business by. If you haven’t been an active member, rest assured; it’s never too late to get involved and start making your mark within the AAHOA network. Trust me, your business will thank you for it!

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