4 areas of focus, unlimited possibilities

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How to discover your focus and maximize your AAHOA membership in 2020

by HEATHER CARNES

A new year brings a new season of change, and exploring what this looks like for you professionally is an important part of growth and reflection. At AAHOA, we serve more than 19,500 unique hoteliers across the nation, developing and cultivating programs, events, initiatives, leadership skills, and relationships that ultimately help you make money, save money, and protect your investments.

And your membership and involvement in AAHOA makes it easy to set goals, get involved, and reach your full potential – regardless of what you want to accomplish or where you’re at in your career. Because each of you has different needs or may want to focus on different parts of your own professional and personal development, it can be helpful to narrow your focus and determine where you can see the biggest point of return for the time you invest. To help you do so, we’ve created the four AAHOA Member Areas of Focus.

To help you discover your 2020 area of focus, ask yourself these important questions:

  •     What do you want to accomplish this year?
  •     What resources and tools do you need to get there?
  •     How will you maximize the value of your AAHOA Membership?
  •     How can you lean on the wisdom of others to learn and grow your business?
  •     Do you identify as someone who wants to get more involved in advocacy, creating systemic change for the industry at large, whether at the local or federal level?
  •     Can you develop your personal brand to expand your network, make better deals, and save money?
  •     How can learning and personal growth contribute to your broader goals?
  •     Do you need to better explore your business partnerships to save on the bottom line and make more strategic business decisions?

While the four areas of focus are meant to help you get the most out of membership, you may realize you relate to one of these more than others – or you may relate to them all. Read on to learn more about each focus and the resources that can help you maximize your investment in AAHOA.

All AAHOA Members should look at the member benefits provided by the organization and take advantage of them. Also, participation – whether it’s on-demand webinars, Town Hall Meetings, Regional Conferences & Trade Shows, or our Convention & Trade Show – makes the member a better hotelier. Personally, having the ability to learn best practices and get certifications is an opportunity I’ve capitalized on from AAHOA.”

Hitesh Patel, Central Midwest Regional Director

 

The most important advice I would give to a new AAHOA Member is to be involved and engaged. You get out of your AAHOA membership what you put in. Attend as many events as possible, and put in the time to get to know and network with as many people as you can. There is an abundance of knowledge to be gained – not only from the events, workshops, and webinars that AAHOA offers but also from the people you will meet at AAHOA Events.”

Mayur (Mike) Patel, North Texas Regional Director

Experience is all about exposure, and AAHOA has many resources that all new AAHOA Members should become familiar with. These resources are crucial to help members protect and grow their business and get the most value out of their dues. Equally important is attending Town Hall Meetings and Regional Conferences & Trade Shows as they offer great opportunities to network with the key players in your area and learn about the latest developments in the industry.”

Mike Riverside, South Pacific Regional Director

Please do not forget the importance of learning through the AAHOA HOTEL OWNERS ACADEMYTM. It is your resource for all AAHOA education and professional development – from in-person workshops to online webinars. I personally have taken advantage of many online webinars and have learned a lot from them. As an entrepreneur, you know the importance of staying ahead of the game.”

Mike Patel, South Central Texas Regional Director

There is no better platform for networking than AAHOA. Attending Regional Conferences, Town Hall Meetings, and, of course, the AAHOA Convention & Trade Show, will give you the best opportunity to meet fellow hoteliers to exchange ideas and learn best practices. Attending AAHOA’s abundance of educational workshops and webinars will also help you stay current on what is happening in our industry. AAHOA prides itself on being able to provide the best tools and information to be successful no matter where you’re at on your journey. Take advantage of all AAHOA has to offer because benefits and opportunities are limitless.”

Jagruti Panwala, AAHOA Chairwoman

The Advocate    

Systemic change can only happen when you make advocacy a part of your long-term business plan. The Advocate wants to get more involved in ongoing advocacy efforts. As entrepreneurs, you may find government mandates and laws hindering your progress to grow your business and serve your community. Advocates want to build better relationships with lawmakers and share their story and voice as a hotelier. They also find personal satisfaction in representing the voice of all of America’s hotel owners, helping AAHOA advocate better with brands, vendors, and lawmakers.

If you find yourself drawn to make a difference, you may be an Advocate. Here’s how you can get involved.

Connect with Other Advocates

Legislative Action Summit: An event that takes place annually, it brings together industry leaders and hoteliers to make your voices heard on the issues that matter most in our nation’s capital. This year’s Legislative Action Summit is September 16-17, 2020, in Washington, D.C.

State Advocacy Days: Many of the laws that most affect hoteliers are made in state capitals across the nation. AAHOA’s State Advocacy Days give you opportunities to meet your elected officials and bring to light the issues that you face in your particular state.

Brand Alliance Meetings: Hosted at brand conferences throughout the year, these meetings give hotel owners the opportunity to hear from AAHOA Officers and the brand’s executive leadership about the partnership between the two and what AAHOA is doing for our members.

Brand Focus Groups: Participate in an AAHOA Brand Focus Group to discuss specific brands, provide valuable insights from the hotel owners’ perspective, and share ideas as it relates to particular brands.

2020 Personal Challenge

Property and Hotelier Information: The data behind AAHOA Members and your properties illustrates our powerful voice in the industry. Help AAHOA advocate on your behalf by confidentially updating your property information at MyAAHOA.com.

Back of the House Tours: AAHOA Members across the U.S. have welcomed representatives to their properties to give them a glance at the ins and outs of what it takes to run a hotel. A Back of the House Tour is a great way for you to build lasting relationships between lawmakers and the small business community in your area.

Support the AAHOA PAC: The AAHOA PAC gives AAHOA the opportunity to advocate on behalf of our members on Capitol Hill and in state capitals across the country, and the AAHOA PAC would cease to exist without continual contributions and support from our members.

To learn more about how you can get involved in AAHOA’s advocacy or franchise efforts, contact advocacy@aahoa.com or franchise@aahoa.com.

The Networker and Personal Brander

Key strengths of any entrepreneur is to build relationships, learn from others, and create a personal brand that serves both your personal and business interests. The Networker and Personal Brander wants to expand his/her network. They recognize the importance of connecting with like-minded individuals. They want to also elevate their personal brand and open opportunities for partnerships, growth, and business ventures. The Networker and Personal Brander may also want to earn a certification that will allow you to pursue new opportunities.

So if you want to grow your network, open up opportunities, and elevate yourself in the industry, you may be a Networker and Personal Brander. Here’s how AAHOA can help.

Build Your Personal Brand

Participate in an AAHOA Committee: Grow your network and make an impact by participating in one of AAHOA’s Committees. Impact the decisions being made to AAHOA programming and collaborate with hoteliers who share similar interests in AAHOA. The application form can be found at AAHOA.com under About Us.

AAHOA Regional Conferences & Trade Shows and Town Hall Meetings: These hyper-local events bring together area hoteliers for networking, and to discuss issues impacting them.

Industry Events: AAHOA participates and has relationships with leading organizations that host some of the industry’s most respected events, including The Lodging Conference, ALIS, NYU Conference, and brand conferences, among others. Oftentimes, AAHOA Members receive exclusive discounts to attend.

Charity Golf Tournaments: In 2019 alone, AAHOA golf tournaments raised more than $170,000 for charity and brought together hundreds of hoteliers for friendly competition, networking, and fun. With four events to choose from this year, find an event near you and participate (regardless of how well you play the game).

2020 Personal Challenge

AAHOACON: AAHOA’s leading annual event – and the nation’s largest event for hotel owners – provides hoteliers the best opportunity to meet like-minded professionals, network, and learn. There simply isn’t another event that provides similar opportunities to meet hotel owners. Register today to attend this can’t-miss event in Orlando.

Get a certification: To help build your personal brand, you may want to explore hotel-industry certifications. Explore AAHOA’s Certificate in Hotel Ownership or Certification in Hotel Industry Analytics, and make a commitment to earning your certificate.

HX: The Hotel Experience Powered by AAHOA: In partnership with Emerald Expositions, and co-located with BDNY, HX provides networking and learning opportunities for hoteliers and industry professionals each fall in New York City. This year’s event is November 8-9, 2020.

To learn more about how you can grow your personal brand and networking opportunities, contact info@aahoa.com.

The Lifelong Learner

As Mahatma Gandhi said, “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” Investing in learning and being exposed to new ideas is imperative for business owners and entrepreneurs. The Lifelong Learner wants to learn a new skill or tackle a business problem, but isn’t always sure where to start. They are interested in new business opportunities and getting ahead of the industry’s trends and challenges. The Lifelong Learner may also want to learn more in a particular aspect of their business, learning more about investments, development, operations, or the laws that impact the bottom line.

AAHOA invests in our members by developing and delivering high-quality educational opportunities that serve you no matter where you are in your career, all developed for the AAHOA HOTEL OWNERS ACADEMYTM. If you want to commit to lifelong learning more this year, here’s where AAHOA can help.

Invest in Yourself

Webinars: With 100 new webinars produced in 2018 and again in 2019, AAHOA’s more than 350+ unique webinar offerings cover important topics in short 20-minute sessions, all accessible on-demand via MyAAHOA.com

AAHOA Events: While you can expand your network at AAHOA’s nearly 200 events a year, many of these gatherings also focus on issues, topics, and learning so hoteliers can stay ahead of new laws, hotel trends, and opportunities on the horizon. Of course, the AAHOA Convention & Trade Show and HX: The Hotel Experience Powered by AAHOA, offer plentiful opportunities to learn, grow, and expand your thinking. Learn more about AAHOA’s events at aahoa.com/events.

Today’s Hotelier: Produced monthly, Today’s Hotelier provides hoteliers and industry leaders with in-depth dives into industry topics and trends, legislative issues and advocacy initiatives at the federal, state, and local levels, and the latest AAHOA happenings. Read it from cover to cover to stay ahead of the topics that matter most.

In-Person Intensive Workshops: AAHOA hosts one- and two-day workshops throughout the country on topics that matter most to hoteliers. Topics range from how to form a management company to successful multi-brand hotel development.

2020 Personal Challenge

Track Your Professional Development in MyAAHOA.com: Created with you in mind, MyAAHOA.com is an online experience that puts everything AAHOA at your fingertips, 24/7/365. Pursue your professional development goals. MyAAHOA.com makes it easy to track your progress.

Certificate in Hotel Ownership: An all-new program, AAHOA has reinvented the CHO in an all-digital format, allowing you to complete a customized certificate curriculum anytime, anywhere, and on your own schedule.

Certification in Hotel Industry Analytics (CHIA): In partnership with the American Hotel & Lodging Education Institute, the International Council on Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education, and STR, AAHOA offers our members the greatest discounted access in the industry for the only certification focused on analytics.

Human Trafficking Awareness Training: AAHOA’s free training on human trafficking prevention is available to all hoteliers and their staff, which allows you to make a difference, protect your business, and do your part to put an end to this hidden crime. Every hotelier should take advantage of this offering.

If you’re a Lifelong Learner and want to engage more with AAHOA’s vast educational offerings, contact info@aahoa.com to learn more.

The Deal-Seeker

One of the most crucial aspects of being a successful entrepreneur is to develop partnerships and relationships with vendors and providers who can help you run a more efficient and profitable business.

The Deal-Seeker wants to make the most of their business partnerships and investments. They want to see their hard-earned dollars go further. They might also want to re-examine their suppliers and business advisors to ensure they have great fit and alignment with their business partners and advisors. AAHOA connects you with the industry’s top vendors and business partners who understand the business and the challenges hoteliers face.

Make Your Hard-Earned Dollars Go Further

Build Relationships: Hoteliers who have a strong network have a strong business. AAHOA enables its members to be able to meet a variety of vendors and continue the conversation past the trade show floor. Building a strong relationship with vendors ensures you’re on top of upcoming industry trends and always getting the best deals to boost your bottom line.

AAHOA Trade Shows: From Regional Conferences & Trade Shows across the country to the AAHOA Convention & Trade Show, AAHOA provides more than 30 opportunities throughout the year for hoteliers to make deals, improve your bottom line, and learn about the latest product and services all in one place.

Exclusive Deals and Discounts: One of the many perks of being an AAHOA Member is receiving exclusive discounts on the products and services you use in your business every day. From technology and healthcare to financing and human resources, you’re sure to find a vendor offering that suits your needs.

2020 Personal Challenge

Subscribe to Vendor Deals: AAHOA Vendors offer deals, discounts, and incentives throughout the year. Log in to MyAAHOA.com to subscribe to vendor deals, announcements, and emails so you can ensure you never miss an opportunity.

                Join Us in Orlando: Attend the 2020 AAHOA Convention & Trade Show – the nation’s leading event for hotel owners – to see all the biggest names under one roof. With more than 600 exhibitors in attendance, you’re sure to find what you’re looking for on the trade show floor.

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