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10 brilliant books that every hotel manager needs to read

  Posted in Hotel Management  Last updated 30/11/2023

Yes, in 2018 we’re living and operating in a predominantly digital online world. Full-length or physical books may seem obsolete to many hotel managers, especially if they were written decades ago. But it would almost be a crime to let such vast caches of knowledge slip into obscurity.

Many hotel and hospitality practices are timeless, and many brands today are built on the ideas constructed in the past. So it’s important to take the time to read the most useful books the industry has to offer.

Here is a list of 10 books we think hotel managers should consider…

Book #1
The Heart of Hospitality: Great Hotel and Restaurant Leaders Share Their Secrets
Written by Micah Solomon

It doesn’t matter which industry you’re in, one of the most foolproof ways to improve is to study those more successful than you and try to emulate them. There’s no shame in adopting the examples others have set. Obviously you will adapt to your individual business but the general guidelines should still apply and work for you.

This book gives you a great insight into what some of the most successful hotel managers are doing that you may not have tried or considered in your own strategy.

View more on Amazon here.

The top 7 must-reads for hotel managers.

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Book #2
Without Reservations: How a Family Root Beer Stand Grew into a Global Hotel Company
Written by J.W. “Bill” Marriott, Jr

Somewhat complimenting book one, this is a specific example of a how a business can grow from something small to become a global leader in the industry.

Marriott is now the largest hotel chain in the world, but few people know that it began as a humble family business. This is a classic all-American success story that maps out the road to triumph in the hotel industry, with plenty of tips and insider knowledge.

View more on Amazon here.

Book #3
Contagious: Why things catch on
Written by Jonah Berger

Throughout human history there have been countless instances where something has spread extremely quickly. Whether it’s an actual virus or the next crazy fad, humans have a unique ability to share with each other.

In this book, Berger explores the science behind word-of-mouth advertising, how to get your hotel noticed, and how to make it popular.

View more on Amazon here.

Book #4
Be our Guest: Perfecting the Art of Customer Service
Written by The Disney Institute and Theodore Kinni

Hoteliers can never have enough tricks up their sleeve when it comes to understanding and pleasing their guests. The travellers that come to stay are the absolute priority in the hotel industry so any advice should be taken seriously.

This book will help hoteliers approach customer service in non-typical and effective ways to deliver an experience that goes beyond the standard expectation.

View more on Amazon here.

Book #5
Check-In Check-Out: Managing Hotel Operations
Written by Gary K Vallen and Jerome J Vallen

It’s important to understand best practices in all aspects of hotel business operations, and you can find it all in this book. You’ll find an extensive array of advice on how to ensure your hotel stays profitable from guest experience to record keeping.

Extensive revisions have taken place over the years, most recently to include culinary updates, to keep up with current trends and predictions for the future.

View more on Amazon here.

Book #6
100 Tips for Hoteliers
Written by Peter Venison

For hoteliers looking for general pointers across the board, there’s no better place to start. Offering advice based on proven experience, Venison takes holistic approach from the opening of a hotel to the day-to-day operations.

It should be noted this leans more towards a beginner’s perspective so advanced hoteliers may need to look instead at the other books on our list.

View more on Amazon here.

Book #7
Down and Out in Paris and London
Written by George Orwell

While it may be a surprise to see work by George Orwell on the list, this memoir is entirely relatable for hoteliers, despite being written in the 1930s.

You’ll find a story here that reveals the journey of working your way up through the hospitality industry and the importance of thinking about staff at all levels of a business.

It makes you think about how a restaurant and hotel function like a machine with many busy and interdependent components.

View more on Amazon here.

Book #8
Revenue Superstar!: The Simple Rules of Hotel Revenue Management
Written by Johan Hammer

Being a good revenue manager requires constant analysis, evaluation, and reevaluation. Questions must always be asked about what the best strategy is moving forward.

It’s enough to put anyone’s head in a spin. That’s why Johan Hammer has provided a straightforward explanation of how hoteliers can approach it at their property. Take note of the simple rules everyone can follow.

View more on Amazon here.

Book #9
The Cornell School of Hotel Administration on Hospitality: Cutting Edge Thinking and Practice
Written by Michael C. Sturman,‎ Jack B. Corgel,‎ Rohit Verma

Aimed specifically at hotel managers and administrators this book examines how to develop and grow a multinational career in the hospitality industry.

Among other things you’ll learn how to maximise profits, understand customer choices, and control business costs.

View more on Amazon here.

Book #10
Setting the Table: The Transforming Power of Hospitality in Business
Written by Danny Meyer

For hoteliers with a restaurant this should prove to be an easy, engaging, and insightful read.

Not only does it give you tips on how to have fun while running a successful hotel restaurant, but teaches you on how to bring real hospitality to your service.

View more on Amazon here.

By Shine Colcol

Shine is the SEO and Content Manager of SiteMinder, the only software platform that unlocks the full revenue potential of hotels. With 5+ years of experience in content strategy, Shine has produced informational content across various industry topics, mostly about operations management and continuous improvement. She aims to share well-researched articles for hoteliers to discover how to optimize their time and increase room revenue.


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