Celebrating a Star-Studded Year in Starwood!

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Dear Friends of Starwood Cares,

There is no better way to close the year 2014 than sharing with you the following glad tidings :

We thank our property leaders, management and associates for making 2014 a “star-studded” year. These awards are testaments to our distinctive spirit of Starwood Cares that deeply permeates everything that we do.

Starwood Asia Pacific also scored big in the area of Care for Community, successfully carrying out our audacious plan of impacting hundreds of communities all on a single day. This happened through The Starwood Run for Good races held simultaneously in 92 racing locations across Asia Pacific, raising USD 227,500 that will benefit a total of 91 charities in the communities in which we work and live. 

Congratulations to all 19,708 racers comprising guests, business partners, property owners, associates, their family and friends who trained hard for the marathon. Because of you, many communities will receive help in essential areas of health, nutrition, education and job opportunities. Thank you for making real to these communities the distinctive spirit of Starwood Cares. 

In the same period, Starwood Asia Pacific also enthusiastically supported Starwood’s first annual global volunteer campaign appropriately named Together As One. Over 14 days, in hundreds of cities around the world, over 170,000 Starwood associates worldwide came together to make a real difference in the communities where we live and operate. 

Some of the activities included organizing a joint hotel blood donation drive in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, building and setting up a library for students in Chengdu, China, treating elderly guests of the Asian Women Welfare Association to a delightful afternoon tea in Singapore and helping to bring access to clean water for rural communities in Thailand.

“Giving back to our communities is not new to Starwood.  In fact, Starwood associates have volunteered more than 200,000 hours since 2008.  What is new is this international effort to involve every associate, Together As One.  It’s an integral part of our Starwood Cares for the Community program, launched in February to harness Starwood’s global reach and the power of our people to make a meaningful difference.”

Frits van Paasschen
CEO, Starwood Hotels & Resorts

Thank you for standing in the gap for communities in need.

And as in every quarter, we honor outstanding acts of care through our quarterly Starwood Cares Awards. Their stories of care will inspire many others that will further reinforce to our guests and the communities our distinctive Starwood Cares culture. To read their inspirational stories, follow this link.

As an organization with a presence in hundreds of cities around the globe, Starwood is uniquely placed to impact communities around us. In Asia Pacific alone, our wide reach across 16 countries and over 200 cities  in diverse cultural and geographical landscapes allows us to connect and work with many communities to uplift people in need. Together as one, we definitely can and will make a significant impact and give our guests, our partners and our communities a better way to experience the world. And together as one, as we reach out to communities in need, we will also be creating a better way for our associates to experience the world. 

We wish all associates a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

 

Message from the Editor

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Dear Friends of Starwood Cares,

This issue, we celebrate the achievements of many outstanding associates, teams and hotels across Asia Pacific and in the industry.

On September 4 th, the Starwood Asia Pacific Divisional Award Gala Dinner recognized our winners in style and gave a fitting tribute to their selfless and inspirational examples. Many of the winners expressed their heartfelt thanks and gratitude to leaders, colleagues and families for their unceasing support and encouragement.

In addition to the gala awards dinner, our Starwood Cares President’s Award 2014 winners also enjoyed an exclusive 3-day, 2-night stay in Bangkok that included a tour of the culturally-vibrant city. Get a sense of their special trip here.

Building on our brand strength through our associates’ consistent and passionate activation of our brands and SPG, Starwood won the highest honor at the 25th Annual TTG Travel Awards 2014 when it was named Best Global Hotel Chain.

This award is truly an encouragement for Starwood and an affirmation that we have been doing everything right as a hotel partner to our B2B customers. I want to share this award with all colleagues in every Starwood property across Asia Pacific, our global, divisional and regional team members as well as our Starwood Sales Organizations worldwide.  Your combined efforts made it possible for Starwood to be a best-in-class hotel company.”

Stephen Ho
President, Starwood Asia Pacific

Still on the topic of celebrations, associates throughout Asia Pacific will happy to know that now, there is yet another official avenue where their good work will be recognized. The inaugural Global Rooms Week is designed to promote collaboration between Front Desk, Housekeeping and Engineering teams as well as recognize outstanding individuals and teams. These are exciting days indeed for properties and associates as they fully embrace GPS.

And as in every quarter, we honor outstanding acts of care through our quarterly Starwood Cares Awards. These associates and many others are constantly helping us to reshape and redefine service. To get to know the winners and their winning ways, click here.

As we move towards delivering GPS to our guests, we can remain confident that Starwood will continue to set the pace for the hospitality industry. More and more associates are joining our ranks of care ambassadors and their unique interpretations of care and their personal touch create unparalleled experiences that are authentic and hard to replicate. Thank you for your dedication to giving our associates, our guest, business partners and the community a better way to experience the world.

 

Message from the Editor

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Francis Tan, who started Starwood Cares and Starwood Careers some 15 years ago leaves with great comfort and satisfaction that the award-winning programs will continue to propel Starwood Asia Pacific in its war for talent. We wish Francis, architect of these key programs, a beautiful new chapter.
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Dear Friends of Starwood Cares,
 
Welcome back to another issue of Living Starwood Cares!
 
We continued the year on a strong footing, sustaining our winning streak and pocketing more than 20 Human Resources-related awards within just 1.5 years of active participation in regional awards. We are pleased to share that during the recent Human Resources Excellence Awards held in Singapore, Starwood clinched the prestigious Award for Excellence in Employee Development and Leadership Development. Additionally, we are also the proud winner of the Best Enterprise for Talent Development Award (China) awarded by the China Training Magazine.
 
 
                               Starwood AP Divisional TDC & HR Team at the HRE Awards 2014 

 

Best Enterprise for Talent Development Award (China)
 
To continue our focus on building Starwood as an Employer of Choice, a concerted decision was made to rename Recruitment Day as Starwood Careers Day so as to reflect Starwood’s talent strategy that goes beyond talent attraction, to include talent development and talent retention. The inaugural Starwood Careers Day attracted more than 19,000 applicants in 120 key locations across Asia Pacific. Read the interesting practices from different regions here.
 
  
 
Starwood Careers Day across various regions
 
Since 2013, Starwood Careers has been refreshed to better align our individual associate’s career aspirations with our corporate aspiration. This means that all associates can have the confidence that their individual development will dovetail into our corporate goals. The theme, “My Aspiration, My Journey” has been introduced to inspire all associates to realize their career aspirations with Starwood through personalized learning journeys.
 
 
 

Le Meridien’s General Manager, Harvey J. Thompson (Center)
 
Advancing our “Win with Talent” strategy and to inspire associates and future talents to cultivate a growing journey with us, Le Meridien Kuala Lumpur’s General Manager, Harvey J. Thompson (Winning Hotel of Starwood Careers Award 2012) spoke to the STAR about our unique Starwood Careers program. To quote Mr. Thompson, “The program is structured according to participants’ own personal development needs ...Our goal is that the talents get one thing out of their training which they can then apply to their leadership. We want them all to be leaders.”
 
Besides celebrating caring moments by numerous associates, this issue also showcases many interesting resources that provide tips as you prepare and embark on your Starwood Careers Journey with us. We made Talent Management resources our focus as we embark on our Talent Review cycle to select and groom successors through various Starwood Careers Tracks.
 
Based on our growth trajectory, we expect a vast number of new talents to join our division over the next few years as we move closer to our AP500 vision. Together, we will welcome our new talents with our signature culture of care and by growing their careers at Starwood.
 
On a personal note, some of you may have seen the announcement of my impending departure from Starwood to begin another phase of my life. It has been a great Journey at Starwood, filled with fond memories and great learning. I am extremely proud of and thankful for the time and opportunities provided by Starwood.
 
All our achievements would not have been possible without the unwavering commitment of our Asia Pacific properties, leaders, and associates in bringing Starwood Cares and Starwood Careers alive and I thank all of you for your wholehearted support. I couldn't have asked for more.
 
My best wishes,
Francis Tan
Vice President
Talent Management & Organization Development
Starwood Asia Pacific Hotels & Resorts

Message from the Editor

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Dear Friends of Starwood Cares,
 
Welcome back to the first issue of Living Starwood Cares 2014!
 
This new beginning of the year marks a great start for us as Starwood Asia Pacific won the Best Engagement Strategy Award and is also a finalist to Best Leadership Development Award during the recent HRM Awards 2014 held in Singapore.
 
This prestigious win comes on the back of numerous accolades we collectively won from 2013. Some of the key Awards and accolades include Excellence in Employee Engagement Award (Winner) and Excellence in Cross-border HR Programs Award (Winner), both conferred by the Human Resources Excellence Awards; Best in Employee Career Development Award (Winner) by Benefits Asia 2013; Best Employers India 2013 study by Aon Hewitt, Best Training Program of 2013 (China) and China Best Talent Development Organization. We have won a total of 15 Awards & accolades in the areas of Employee Engagement, Talent Development, Training and Employer of Choice to date.

  

Starwood AP Divisional TDC & HR Team at the HRM Awards 2014

As with all of our Awards, this represents the collective achievement of everyone from Starwood Asia Pacific Division and this latest award is particularly special for our properties who are great practitioners of STARWOOD CARES; and special thanks goes out to property leaders and associates.  

  

Left: Gwendolyn Chia at the ACIR International Receptionist of the Year 2014
Right: Saurabh Bakshi, GM of Sheraton Bangalore Hotel
 
We are also pleased to announce that Gwendolyn Chia from St Regis Singapore has managed to clinch first prize during the AICR International Receptionist of the year 2014 award in Hamburg and,Saurabh Bakshi, General Manager of Sheraton Bangalore Hotel has won the prestigious Rising Star Award for Emerging Hospitality Leaders. Congratulations to the both of you on your achievements and we hope to hear more good news on our associates being recognized and acclaimed for their exceptional leadership and services.

Trophy for Starwood Cares President’s Awards
 
Other than external awards, it is with great joy that we launch the nomination for the prestigious Starwood Cares President’s Awards and Starwood Careers Award 2014 (for the achievements of 1 Jan – 31 Dec 2013). These awards speaks even more volume internally on how we appreciate our associates and leaders on bring out the special Starwood Cares culture to make Starwood a great place to work in and a career to grow and develop with us. We look forward to receive your submission, please click here for more information on Starwood Cares President's Awards and here for Divisional Starwood Careers Awards.

   

Service Culture Next Generation – Activation of Brand Signature Programs
From Left – Participants experienced the St. Regis Bloody Mary Ritual, the Luxury Collection Cocktail Collection and St Regis Butler Service
Below – Luxury Collection Epicurean Journey
 
As the year unfolds, exciting changes await as we continue to launch our Service Culture Next Generation for the St. Regis and Luxury Collection brands in the recent hub at The Laguna, Nusa Dua Bali. This St. Regis and Luxury Collection Service Culture Champion Certification were the first to be launched in Starwood and participants get to experience and demonstrate their understanding of delivering branded services and our signature programs.
 
This issue features many of our interesting caring moment stories, hotel practices as well as useful tips and resources. May you be inspired and enjoy reading!

Francis Tan
Vice President
Talent Management & Organization Development
Starwood Asia Pacific Hotels & Resorts

 

Message from the Editor

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Dear Friends of Starwood Cares,
 
2013 has been a year of change for us. Some of us have termed it as the year of the ‘Next Generation’. This is not referring to the often talked about ‘Gen Y or Millennials’ demographic segments. Rather, the term ‘Next Generation’ heralds the latest initiatives, systems or training programs that support our critical business goals and represents many key components of GPS.

At the same time, I believe that many of us are starting to better appreciate the changes that are happening in our immediate and the macro environment. We are more aware of the opportunities happening in the Age of Great Change such as the rise of the middle class, the speed of technological changes, new mediums to do business and how people learn. In addition, we should be aware of new expectations, in terms of how customers get and share information, what it takes to keep them loyal to our brands and how they expect a seamless and consistent experience across our entire global network.

With our GPS strategy, all these can be articulated as having this one big audacious goal of making ‘Every guest feel special and recognized every time', ie, helping them to have a better way to experience the world. A simple phrase with huge implications!

Underpinning this audacious goal is the importance of our Associates in making this audacious goal a reality. The quality of our Associates, leaders; their motivation and how well they are trained are instrumental to this goal. Contextually, ‘Technology Enables and People Deliver’.

To enable our Associates, one of the key initiatives is the launch our Starwood Careers in 2011. To date, we have developed close to 7,000 Associates and this achievement would not have been possible without the joint effort of our properties and leaders.

We launched the Starwood Careers Next Generation with a renewed focus of encouraging our Associates to find their “Career Best” and to realize their aspiration. A mindset shift can be seen in many of the recent inspiring Starwood Careers Property Launches by our hotels. Our Associates are excited by the opportunities to grow, to dream as evidenced by many who wanted to be enrolled for our Starwood Careers tracks and even articulating their ultimate career goals.

 

   

Another critical piece to support our GPS strategy is the launch of the Service Culture Next Generation . It will provide a renewed focus on enlivening branded experiences and in line with our goal; to touch every guest, every time. We started with the W, Sheraton and Westin Brands and have certified many Service Culture Champions who will spearhead the rollout of the Service Culture Next Generation together with their property leaders. Other Brands will launch theirs in 2014.

The latest approach with the Next Gen version also signals a major shift in the way we train our Associates or the way we learn. We have evolved from the traditional classroom approach to a blended learning format that enables flexible learning, timeliness and organization of learning into meaningful ‘chunks’. There are also different approaches to making sure training sticks such as having experiential activities, creating passion for the brand, assessments, etc. So, who says learning can’t be fun and yet effective?

Again, we hope to inspire everyone so that we will all ‘Make every guest feel special and recognized, every time!’.

  

Remembering all our heroes who in their day-to-day help move us closer to this goal, we celebrated the Starwood Cares President’s Award 2012 a few months back.  They are our benchmarks and exemplary of our Starwood Values, that helps personify what Personalization should be.

Read about what these Caring Moment winners did to create emotional connections with our Associates and guest. Just like Arnold protecting Ajesh's valuables against being snatched by a thief and Sherry providing a personal touch to our guest when she noticed that he was cold. Join me in celebrating their moments as our Starwood heroes.

As you read this note, chances are that you may have a fleeting thought that your story have not been told.  Despite this, do take pride in the fact that you can stand shoulder to shoulder with the winners that we have featured. We thank you for helping to make a difference; not only to our guests but also in helping your Associates better experience their world.

While the year is coming to a close, it also beckons a new beginning. Let’s continue to work together to lead and consolidate our position as the number ONE lifestyle hospitality company.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!  

 

 
Francis Tan
Vice President
Talent Management & Organization Development
Starwood Asia Pacific Hotels & Resorts

A Short Note from the Editor

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Dear Friends of Starwood Cares,
 
Welcome to the Q2 issue of Living Starwood Cares for 2013!
 
In this issue of Caring Moment Awards, I was moved by Peter Brown who made the community a better place by organizing  charitable activities such as blood donation drive and fundraising activities. Also check out the story of the Excom team from Sheraton Zhongshan Hotel delivering nourishing soup to their associates after a hectic period during the Chinese New Year.
 
 
Recently, Greater China Region held the Starwood Careers - National Associates Micro- Film Festivalwhich each hotel was encouraged to upload a video and share their associate’s successfully career growth and achievements. Check out the award winning films that match Oscar’s Award Standards!
 

 
 
 
Congratulations to all the winning films and to the Greater China Region for a very successful film festival. Most of all, thank you for inspiring us with your growth stories.
 
Getting up on social media, in our Ideas and Resources page, follow our very Own Starwood Hotels & Resorts Instagram! You can find updates about Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide and also learn more about our CEO, Frits van Paasschen's month-long market immersion in Dubai. 
On a final note, we are in the midst of revamping the website; do look forward to the revised Living Starwood Cares in the next issue with our new Next Gen Starwood Cares look and results of our Starwood Cares President’s Award winners.
“Do the right thing. It will gratify some people and astonish the rest” – Mark Twain
 

Francis Tan
Vice President
Talent Management & Organization Development
Starwood Asia Pacific Hotels & Resorts

Stephen's Message

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Dear Colleagues,

Let me take this opportunity to share some of the latest happenings in the world of Starwood Asia Pacific and some personal learning as I embark on my Journey on getting to as many of our locations and meeting as many of you as possible.

We have just ended the first quarter and a lot has happened in our division and the world of Starwood. We have signed 18 new hotels and opened 7 new hotels including the first W Hotel in mainland China; W Guangzhou, the 3rd Luxury Collections Hotel in Thailand; Vana Belle in Koh Samui, the biggest Aloft globally (482 rooms) in Kuala Lumpur, the 6th Westin in India; The Westin Chennai and the 20th Four Points by Sheraton in Greater China; Four Points Sheraton Taizhou, Yuhuan. We also opened the second tower of Sheraton Macao with an additional 2000 rooms. Our Pacific team re-opened the Westin Fiji Resort in early February after it was damaged by cyclone Evans in December. Year to date, we now have 248 hotels in operation and 164 hotels under construction, so we have surpassed the 400 hotels milestone!

I am pleased to have visited many of our hotels in the five diverse regions across Asia Pacific. My purpose is to understand our business better and interact with our talented associates and management teams. In addition, my visits have provided a more “real life” feel of the situation on the ground and to better understand the long term perspective of market movement and dynamics.

On the people front, we held the Asia Pacific wide Recruitment Day on March 6. This event started in Greater China last year and extended to the rest of Asia Pacific this year. The Recruitment Day initiative demonstrated the “Power of Starwood”; with our wide distributions in over 240 operating hotels and resorts. We must not forget that one of the key priorities of our leadership teams at the hotel, regional and divisional levels is to recruit, develop and retain the best talent to support our growing footprint.

Our hotels would just be a nice cold box without soul if we do not have well trained and dedicated talents to deliver the best personalized service to our guests. I understand that Starwood in Asia Pacific enjoys a good reputation in people development and training.

Once again, through our collective effort with Starwood Careers and more, we want to continue to excel, not only in developing our talent but also to be able to attract and retain good talent. It is good for the business and more importantly, good for the individual.

As usual, I would like to close my letter with a quote by Henry Ford: “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.” So don’t stop learning as you never know what you learn today can someday be useful as you move on with your life.

Regards,
Stephen Ho
President
Starwood Asia Pacific Hotels

A Short Note from the Editor

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Dear Friends of Starwood Cares,

Welcome to the final issue of Living Starwood Cares for 2012! In this issue, we will be featuring recent events that took place in the properties as well as touching stories of associates who played their part by living out the Starwood Cares culture in their daily lives.  
 
In this issue of Caring Moment Awards , I was moved by our associates from Sheraton Seoul D Cube City who helped a guest to reunite with her family lost over 15 years. Also, check out the story on how Jackie Xu introduces innovative ideas to boost business for Grange Grill at The Westin Beijing Chaoyang.
 
 
Associates from Sheraton Seoul D Cube City – Winning story for Care for Guest category
 
Also, take a look at all the Happenings that took place across Asia Pacific such as Le Royal Meridien Shanghai recognizing their Smile Ambassadors. 
 
 
The winners for Smile Ambassador Competition in Le Royal Meridien Shanghai
 
In addition, the annual Talent Development & Culture (TDC) 2012 Conference took place over the past 1 month in regions such as Japan Korea Guam, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, and South East Asia. This is a 3 days conference with a theme of Future Forward where hotel TDC & HR leaders are exposed to changes happening globally, in Asia Pacific, and Starwood. They are inspired to move and think ahead with time as we plan for the upcoming year for their region, hotel and their own development.
 
In Profiles and Personalities, we are proud to feature Stephen Ford (General Manager of The Westin Beijing Financial Street and Area Managing Director of North China), Kalyan Ghanagam (from Sheraton Udaipur Palace Resort & Spa) as well as our APD Talent Management and Organizational Development team, who shared their exciting Starwood Journeys with us.
 
Be in the know of creative ideas that you could implement in your property by checking out the Ideas & Resources page. Also, don’t miss out on the recent article featuring Starwood Headquarters’ innovative launch of its showroom in the new Stamford office to showcase the nine brands under Starwood.
 
 
A “Global Gallery” highlights Starwood’s global footprint in 100 countries with a five-panel installation featuring some of the company’s most high-profile recent openings around the world.
 
On a final note, I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for the upcoming 2013!
 
“The secret to getting ahead is getting started.” - Mark Twain
 
Francis Tan
Vice President
Talent Management & Organization Development
Starwood Asia Pacific Hotels & Resorts

 

Stephen's Message

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Dear Colleagues

Hello from Hong Kong! We just concluded our ten day SLT Asia trip with Frits, Vasant, Simon, Phil, Tad and Andrew together with our divisional and regional teams. We started our journey in Macau with the grand opening of Sheraton Macao, our largest hotel globally (approximately 4000 rooms with a ballroom that is larger than 11 basketball courts). From Macau, we travelled to Xian, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Langkawi, Manila, and ended our journey in Myanmar. The SLT trip showcased the diversity of our hotels, associates and regions in this division. You must be wondering the purpose of visiting Manila and Myanmar where we have no hotel. Well, this is precisely the reason for our visits as we wanted to explore opportunities with potential owners and make some noises with the media folks and government officials.

Talking about grand opening, Sheraton Macau’s opening is definitely a hard act to follow. From the fantastic firework display to the gala dinner and after-dinner pool party, everyone was so impressed with the power of Starwood. Our colleagues from Stamford, divisional and regional teams as well as supporting hotels and associates from Sheraton Macao worked together to host the biggest opening event in this division. We assembled nearly 517 media folks from Macau, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan, Korea, Indonesia, India, China, Philippines, Australia, USA, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, etc. Kudos to our owners, Las Vegas Sands; the Sheraton Macau associates led by Josef Dolp; SSO, Sales & Marketing teams from the various hotels and division who provided tremendous support to look after such a big media event plus nearly 1000 VIP guests. Our guests raved about the extensive facilities and more importantly on the excellent services provided by the 1450 tireless associates from over 20 nationalities at the hotel. To welcome the auspicious opening, the hotel with nearly 2000 rooms in phase one ran almost full house with paying guests two days after the grand opening! This successful opening sent a very positive message to the development communities and our owners of Starwood’s capability in delivering stunning result even for such a large hotel.

As this is my first letter to all of you after taking over the helm officially from Miguel on 1 July, I want to take this opportunity to share my reflection in the couple of months and how I see the future as we embark on a new chapter together. Actually I have been working closely with Miguel since his retirement announcement in April this year. It has been an interesting and at times exhausting journey as I juggled between learning new things in this new role while handing over the Greater China development responsibility over to Robert. The traveling to the diverse region within Asia Pacific is a real eye opener for me as with each hotel visit. I learned more about the intriguing part of our business in each city or resort. The highlight of my trip is meeting with our associates, customers and owners. I benefitted so much by talking to our hotel teams as there are immense wealth of experiences and ideas generated by our associates to improve our connection with our guests.

I am very fortunate to inherit a well-diversified hotel portfolio, generally reasonable owners who are great business partners and most importantly a very talented and dedicated team of people working in this division. Having Miguel around for over four months to do the handover has really helped me settled into the role comfortably. Quite a few folks asked me how I would fit into Miguel’s shoes. The reality is Miguel is a true legend in this company and would be difficult for me to fit into his shoes. I just need to bring my own shoes (at least it fits) and take one step at a time as I embark on the next phase of my Starwood journey.

Moving forward, we have launched Global Personalization at Starwood or “GPS” recently. This will be the game changer for all of us at Starwood. GPS is a slate of initiatives that would give us new capabilities to understand our guests and customers better to deliver consistent personalized experiences throughout the world, building loyalty beyond reason and achieving our goal to “Own the Guest”. If we execute this initiative properly, we will leave our competitors behind and ensure the loyalty of our SPG guests. So I am requesting that all of you especially the front line associates embrace GPS as only you can deliver the promise and touch our customers in a positive way. For General Managers and Operation Excellence team members, please ensure that you take the time to download the relevant GPS in Actions notes (e.g. 14 Things to Know & Do) so that you can train your teams accordingly.

Another important initiative which is instrumental in shaping our organization over the years is STARWOOD CARES. This is our pillar in defining our organization, creating a shared culture, establishing ourselves as an Employer of Choice and most importantly, sharing a set of important values. As Starwood Cares has been with us for more than a decade, it has evolved over time to support our business needs and plays an important part in bonding all our associates together. You will be hearing from Francis and the Divisional Talent Management & Culture Team on an important resource to supplement Starwood Cares. Stay tuned and more to come from Francis on this new resource available……….

Today, we are the largest upper upscale and luxury operator in Asia Pacific with 235 operating and 150 properties under construction. However, we cannot rest on our laurel and must continue to push our growth on the development front. We have strong pipeline and our development teams will continue to push our leads in each region. The reality is we will only be able to sign more deals if we deliver on our performance so the work by the field teams are extremely important for us to win new deals from our competitors. Overall, September has been a good month for us; beside Sheraton Macau, we opened W Sentosa in Singapore; ITC Grand Chola in Chennai, India; The Royal Begonia in Hainan; Sheraton Fuzhou and Sheraton Changchun Hotels which added another 6 new hotels to our operating portfolio bringing our YTD openings to 23 new hotels. Our development teams executed 46 new hotels including a new LOI for Sheraton in Manila which is one of the few countries in Asia where we do not have a presence.

With budgeting season in process, I would like to emphasize that we must focus on our initiatives but at the same time be adaptable to change in an uncertain global economy to stay ahead of the game. As a company, we have strong programs and KPI in place to support our business be it GPS, SPG, GEI, Channel Delivery, TLPE, ISAC, cluster sales, etc. We have witnessed and recovered strongly from previous crisis. The key is we must build a resilient business model and cost structure so we can weather any downturn and continue to grow our business in the right way.

I will sign off here with a quote: “It is important to think of the challenges or problems in life, but even more important to “Put Them Down” before you retire for the day. That way, you will not be stressed and wake up every day fresh & strong to handle any issues, any challenges that comes your way!”

Regards,
Stephen Ho
President
Starwood Asia Pacific Hotels & Resorts

A Short Note from the Editor

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 Dear Friends of Starwood Cares,

Warm greetings to everyone!

Welcome to the third issue of Living Starwood Cares 2012! The past few months have been an exciting time in Starwood Asia Pacific, with numerous Starwood Careers events happening and submissions of heartwarming stories from our properties where associates are living out the Starwood Cares culture in their daily lives.

The Starwood Careers GM Track 2011 (Graduation Workshop) and 2012 (Opening Workshop) commenced in Sheraton Towers Singapore from 29 – 31 Aug 2012. Besides the inspirational speeches given by the top management in Starwood AP Division and Starwood Corporate Office, the candidates from both classes got the opportunity to network with each other, along with many APD senior leadership during the graduation dinner held especially for the 2011 class.

Starwood Careers - GM Track 2012 - Opening Workshop - Pinning ceremony to signify the start of the GM Track.

Starwood Careers - GM Track 2012 - Opening Workshop - Pinning ceremony to signify the start of the GM Track.

 

Starwood Careers - GM Track 2011 - Graduating Class presented a song and touching individual speeches to thank their Direct Managers, Mentors and their hotel’s support during the Graduation Dinner.

Subsequently, the Starwood Careers - EAM/HM Track workshops were also held in Bangkok and Shanghai respectively in early Sept. Similarly, both Opening and Graduation Workshops were conducted at the same time and candidates attended a fruitful sharing session given by senior management, and were imparted essential tips and information for them to make the move to be EAMs and HMs.

Candidates in the Starwood Careers - EAM / HM Track 2012 (AP) Opening Workshop sharing their knowledge and experiences with each other

Candidates in Starwood Careers – EAM / HM Track 2011 (Greater China) – Writing down their leadership speech

The annual Talent Development & Culture (TDC) 2012 Conference for Greater China Region was a great success! The team seized the opportunity for the official launch of the Starwood Cares Weibo – a new media communication platform as well as organizing the first ever TDC Expo which provided an opportunity for participants to showcase their hotels best practices.

Highlights of the TDC 2012 Conference – Great China Region

Also, do not miss the short biography of Mr. Stephen Ho, our newly appointed President of Starwood Asia Pacific Division in Profiles and Personalities as he shares his inspirational story of his Starwood Journey.

Lastly, we are happy to announce the launch of the Starwood Cares Overview e-learning in Development Center. The STARWOOD CARES Overview summarizes the fundamentals of our shared values and culture for the Starwood Asia Pacific Division. This is indeed a valuable resource for you and reinforces your role in living our Starwood Cares values. We have incorporated a quiz with the launch of this e-learning and if you get all your answers correct, you will stand a chance to win 1 out of 10 shopping vouchers worth US$100 in a lucky draw. Please click here for more details.

We hope that you will enjoy this issue! Happy Reading!

 “Whatever you are, be a good one.” - Abraham Lincoln

Francis Tan
Vice President
Talent Management & Organization Development
Starwood Asia Pacific Hotels & Resorts


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