This Week's Herman Trend Alert

Leadership in Normal 2.0

  The Herman Trend Alert

April 26, 2006

Technology Assists Travel and Hospitality---and the Environment

Many of us who are road warriors have seen airlines, restaurants, and hotels embrace technology in an effort to serve their customers with fewer employees. We have kiosks to check us into both flights for most airlines and Hyatt Hotel rooms. Microtel, Hilton, and Radisson Hotels allow guests to check in on line. Many Hilton vans will allow guests to check in and receive their keys on the shuttle bus on their way to the property. The object is not only to save the chain or airline the salaries, but also to provide an extra measure of time-saving convenience to consumers.

But recently the Fairmont Hotel and Resort chain has embraced technology in a way that will benefit the brand and the environment. The chain is “going green” by powering its front desk computers with wind. No kidding, with wind.

Soon, Fairmont reports, it will have all 249 of its check-in computers throughout North America powered by wind. The technology comes from an organization called Ego-Logo. The firm supplies systems that provide “certified wind power.”

According to Fairmont, the systems will result in an almost 100 ton reduction of greenhouse gases, not to mention the obvious energy savings. . . and with energy costs rising exponentially, this purchase makes sense from a number of directions.

Fairmont has certainly positioned itself on the leading edge of technology by being one of a growing number of progressive companies purchasing wind power. In addition, this move garners favor with Fairmont’s affluent guests who respect the environment. According to Fairmont’s manager of environmental affairs, Michelle White, this purchase of wind power is a new component of the company's “Green Partnership Program,” Green Partnership Program includes conserving resources in many ways thereby respecting the environment.

Look for more corporations, those inside and outside of the travel industry, to find ways to embrace alternate sources of energy, while demonstrating their high level of corporate citizenship. This social consciousness will be received well by both internal and external customers, and thus will contribute to both increasing market shares and higher employee retention as employees embrace green initiatives.

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