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[Excerpt] Today’s hospitality and tourism companies face complex, dramatically shifting challenges, most notably the need to compete for increasingly sophisticated customers in a global, fluid marketplace. To attract and retain the loyal cadre of customers that will ensure the organization’s success, service companies such as hospitality organizations must employ technologically advanced, yet margin sensitive, product and pricing strategies and practices that will differentiate themselves to their intended market. Even more importantly, these service organizations need to devise strategies that will capture and retain the most important yet, from a financial perspective, unrecognized asset on the balance sheet: the employees that design and deliver the service to the customer base. Human resource strategists (i.e. Becker & Gerhart, 1996; Cappelli & Crocker-Hefter, 1996; O’Reilly & Pfeffer, 2000; Pfeffer, 1998; Ulrich, 1997), including those who take a hospitality perspective (i.e. Baumann, 2000; Hume, 2000; Worcester, 1999) advocate a renewed attention to the investment in employees or “human capital” as a source of strategic competitive advantage.


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© Nova Science Publishers. Final version published as: Walsh, K., Enz, C. A., & Siguaw, J. A. (2007). Innovations in hospitality human resources: Cases from the U.S. lodging industry. In S. Kusluvan (Ed.), Managing employee attitudes and behaviors in the tourism and hospitality industry (pp. 787-803). Hauppauge, NY: Nova Science Publishers. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.