91st Annual Hotel Ezra Cornell to Examine the Dynamics of Workplace Diversity, Hotel Distribution, Social Media

Mar 01, 2016

Contact: Ben Pilosof, HEC 91 Director of Communications, 818.610.9701, bmp78@cornell.edu


Ithaca, NY, March 1, 2016 - The 91st Annual Hotel Ezra Cornell (HEC 91) at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration (SHA) will present an exciting array of presentations and workshops addressing the roles that workforce diversity, distribution, and social media play in shaping "the new normal" of hospitality.

  • On March 18, 2016 from 11:00 to 11:45 a.m., diversity and inclusion heads for Wyndham Worldwide and SHA will hold a discussion about the evolution of diversity in the workplace considering the heavy organizational displacement of Baby Boomers with Millennials.
  • On March 18 from 1:00 to 1:30 p.m., Kalibri Labs CEO and co-founder Cindy Estis Green '79 will demystify the digital marketplace by revealing methods for better understanding hotel distribution costs.
  • On March 19, 2016 from 8:45 to 9:45 a.m., the Social Media "Power Hour" will help attendees explore the vehicles through which they can use social media to more effectively engage with the consumer. First, Marty Weintraub, founder and evangelist of aimClear Marketing Agency, will provide tips for navigating the industry's powerful psychographic targeting revolution, and then the team from TINT will discuss groundbreaking new ways to develop relationships with guests using dynamic social content.

These events will all take place in Statler Auditorium in Statler Hall on the Cornell University campus in Ithaca. Marty Weintraub will also hold a hands-on workshop in the Statler Hall Binenkorb Computer Lab, illustrating a 360° look at the hospitality data universe on March 19 from 1:30 to 2:00 p.m.

The Evolution of Diversity

Each coming generation forms a different perception of the idea of diversity. Members of the Silent Generation and the Baby Boomers saw diversity as a form of legal compliance emerging from the Civil Rights Movement but eventually transitioned to a view of "let's do the right thing." Members of Generation X and the Millennials, however, see diversity as the practice of blending ideas, perspectives, and experiences, as opposed to a focus on race, gender, ethnicity, etc. Generally, resistance to diversity is not about a dislike of inclusiveness but rather a fear of change. Lucida Plummer, vice president of diversity and inclusion for Wyndham Worldwide, and Victor Younger, director of diversity and inclusion for SHA, will discuss the future of workplace diversity as Millennials become the dominant generation.

Demystifying the Digital Marketplace

Challenged by the prominence of bookings through third-party intermediaries, the hospitality industry is actively seeking methods and techniques to understand distribution costs and their impact on hotel profits. In the meantime, many new third-party models are emerging in the form of corporate rate shoppers like TripBam, hybrid social sites like TripAdvisor, and large players in the sharing economy like Airbnb. Cindy Estis Green '79 (Kalibri Labs) will discuss strategic issues, such as how the dynamic digital market will change the economics of the hotel business and how hoteliers are responding to the challenges and opportunities.

Social Media "Power Hour"

Hospitality professionals everywhere understand that a wide array of data is available to address new and existing customers, partners, employees, and influencers. Very few, however, understand the deep implications and raw power of today's psychographic targeting revolution. "Psychographic" distribution is all about advertising, marketing, and selling to consumers online using data collected about their lifestyle, habits, hobbies, and values. In the first half-hour of the Social Media "Power Hour," Marty Weintraub (aimClear Marketing Agency) will teach attendees how to get a target audience to transition from just "liking" to buying.

Traditional social media strategies struggle to keep pace with tech-savvy guests and Millennials. Guests crave so much more. Every pixel, from mobile apps and websites to TV screens and jumbotrons, is an opportunity to develop relationships with guests. In the second half-hour of the "Power Hour," Tim Sae Koo, CEO, and Quinn Cox '15, business development executive, from the world's leading digital engagement platform, TINT, discuss how the industry can leverage customer social content in groundbreaking new ways.

360° Look at the Hospitality Data Universe

Marty Weintraub (aimClear Marketing Agency) will also conduct a no-holds-barred shredding session, providing a comprehensive look at the hospitality data universe. He aims to empower attendees with greater understanding of "big data" marketing, excite them at the prospect of crushing competitors, and make them more aware of how corporate spends cooperative dollars.

Please visit www.hotelezracornell.com for more information about the program and other conference events. Join the conversation on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

About Hotel Ezra Cornell
Hotel Ezra Cornell (HEC) is a weekend-long business conference organized and executed by students at the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University. The conference boasts a series of educational seminars, food-and-beverage events, and leisure activities to generate thought-provoking conversation about the industry and build long-term relationships. A 91-year-old tradition of the school, HEC year after year has given students the opportunity to practice skills they learn in the classroom and showcase their talents to the conference's attendees: Cornell alumni, faculty, staff, and industry professionals from around the globe. For more information, visit www.hotelezracornell.com.

About the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University
The School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University is shaping the global knowledge base for hospitality management through leadership in education, research, and industry advancement. Accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the school provides management instruction in the full range of hospitality disciplines, educating the next generation of leaders in the world's largest industry. Founded in 1922 as the nation's first collegiate course of study in hospitality management, the Cornell School of Hotel Administration is recognized as the world leader in its field. For more information, visit sha.cornell.edu.