by SHEETUL RAYEED
AAHOA Staff Attorney
Hospitality is all about the guest experience and serving others, and I find tremendous satisfaction in serving those who give back to others as a part of their career and life missions.
Serving AAHOA as a Staff Attorney, I navigate members through franchise/independent hotel ownership issues and business-related inquiries.
HOW DOES AAHOA HELP ITS MEMBERS?
We guide hoteliers facing business issues with their independent and franchised properties. AAHOA Members may call and discuss their needs on any issue – from new legislation in their cities to signing new franchise agreements. Although AAHOA cannot provide legal advice, we can provide general information and guidance on a variety of topics. From questions on OSHA audits, ADA lawsuits, and franchise terminations to credit card chargebacks and new development impact, we guide more than 400 AAHOA Members annually in all 50 states with our webinars, referral databases, and other resources. Roughly 26 percent of all our callers own independent hoteliers with questions on issues from guest evictions to music licensing.
In the hospitality industry, we recognize that fostering relationships is vital. We are intentional about this and meet with brand leaders regularly to foster open communication on the issues that matter most to hotel owners and brands. These relationships are crucial because they allow us to bring pressing hotelier issues to the franchisors and explore solutions, and it keeps our brand partners abreast of franchisee concerns. Our partnerships also allow us to directly connect a member with senior-level contacts within these large organizations to answer specific brand-related questions.
WHERE CAN HOTELIERS GO TO FIND RESOURCES?
The best resources start right here at AAHOA! The AAHOA HOTEL OWNERS ACADEMY™ delivers incredible educational resources from more than 350 short webinars to full-day intensive courses to deliver relevant resources to each member. The resources cover a wide range of topics – from reputation management to SBA loans – and are informative whether you’re a new hotelier or an experienced one. We add topics to our library every week, so if there is a topic you would like to learn more about, let us know. AAHOA has resources no matter what your question or area of interest.
WHY IS LEGAL COUNSEL IMPORTANT?
Legal counsel early in your contracting or dispute resolution process is imperative to protect your business interests and provides you with powerful leverage. Many hoteliers overlook the importance of legal counsel citing cost constraints, but the value received greatly exceeds the risks a hotelier would otherwise encounter.
From contract disputes to human resource concerns and franchise termination questions, there are experts in every area. As a hotelier, rely on the advice of these experts to navigate you through your business needs. Your investment is worth millions and investing a few thousand more in the right counsel and advice will preserve your investment.
WHAT CAN AAHOA MEMBERS DO TO HELP AAHOA BETTER ADVOCATE ON THEIR BEHALF?
This year, we launched MyAAHOA.com, which allows members to personalize their experience with AAHOA. MyAAHOA.com allows members to access the AAHOA HOTEL OWNERS ACADEMY™, customize their communication preferences, and register for the exciting events we host across the nation. Members can confidentially provide their hotel property information allowing us to communicate relevant, franchise-specific information to those members and to advocate on behalf of our members to local congressional representatives in these areas. Independent hoteliers will receive important communication on issues in the hospitality industry they wouldn’t otherwise hear because they are not affiliated with a brand. Log on and update your profile today!
HOW DO I REACH YOU?
Contact AAHOA at 404-816-5759 or send us an email to [email protected], and we’ll be happy to guide you.