Excerpt: Marriott Exec on Innovation Team & Metrics

By Scott Kirsner |  October 10, 2014

On the Composition of Marriott’s Insight, Strategy & Innovation Team

“It’s a cross-section of folks: writers, designers, folks from consulting groups, culinarians, artists. The idea is really building a team that thinks differently than your business is today — and that, my friends, is not easy. It’s very difficult to see the future, or when you’re in the throes of your own model, to see what a new model can be. Some folks came up through the hotels, and some folks came from outside innovation groups and advertising agencies. It’s a very diverse group, and that’s intentional.”

“One of the greatest things I always am fearful of is people think, ‘Oh, we have an innovation department, and they do all the innovating.’ The minute your culture starts to think that is the right answer, I think you’ve lost the battle. Everyone needs to be innovating and thinking and trying to get their ideas surfaced.”

On Metrics

“We want to make sure that guest scores are improving on quality of the hotel room, enhancing the guest’s stay. We measure product adoption — we are the first hotel company to roll out mobile check-in and check-out. We’re about to launch another 3,000 hotels in December. Adoption is huge, share of wallet is huge, and are we delivering a better experience for our customers than we were a year before?”