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Radiating Positive Impact through Resort Sustainability

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Radiating Positive Impact through Resort Sustainability

By Jess Hoover, Sustainability Coordinator & Hilary Chu, HR Director (Breckenridge Grand Vacations)

We who work in the vacation industry are fortunate tohelp create memories and experiences that touch the lives of our owners, guests, employees, and communities. Because vacation ownership is frequently passed down through generations, we also have an incredible opportunity to showcase sustainable ideas and practices designed to ensure that these experiences continue well into the future.

The impacts of resort sustainabilityare far-reaching. Businesses with strong sustainability ethics set examples for other companies in their industries, their communities, their customers, and their employees. Sustainability makes business sense, too. Increasingly, consumers report supporting businesses with established sustainability programs.

Moreover, adopting environmentally friendly behaviors, such as recycling and decreasing energy usage, are often cost beneficial. These behaviors foster habitsthat employees can take from work to their communities and homes. And, of course, sustainability is important for maintaining the vitality of the local environment.

It is important to make sustainability fun and engaging by celebrating events like Bike to Work Day
and Earth Day with employees and guests
on property. Consider creating resort activities that relate to sustainability issues.

When starting your sustainability program, mapout how your efforts will fit in with your company’s larger mission, culture, resort, and community—aligning strategically along key paths of change. Your leadership team should understand not only how sustainability can be practiced at your resorts but also its role at the department level. Challenge your departments to think of what actions they can take to reduce their overall impact.

As with any new program or initiative, it is always good to walk before you run. And once you’ve made some impactful changes, be sure to share them! 

For the full article on this important topic, see this month’s Developments Magazine. 

Who Wouldn’t Want Some Time Off?

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 Who Wouldn’t Want Some Time Off? 

By: Steve Weisz, ARDA Chairman and President/CEO Marriott Vacations Worldwide

 

 blog picture 2016 

It’s a known fact that there are a lot of people out there that simply don’t use the paid time of from work that their jobs allow. It is estimated that an astounding 55 percent of Americans will not use approximately 658 million days annually, and of that, 222 million are forfeited. It’s crazy! 

We sadly have a society of “work martyrs” that rationalize that it isn’t practical, easy, or “safe” to take time off and enjoy it as we should. Some see it as a fear of being replaced, the thought of a mountain of work that will await their return, or even worse, that a company
or management culture doesn’t encourage it.  

ARDA has proudly partnered with the U.S. Travel Association and their PROJECT: TIME OFF initiative, and I think the findings are nothing short of staggering. On the bright side, imagine the untapped opportunities that are out there for all these people who are getting paid to go on vacation! Who better to help them get there than us—companies that are in the vacation business?

Unlocking this earned vacation time isn’t an easy task, and unfortunately, the trend is getting worse—with paid time of usage decreasing in the last 15 years from 20.3 days to 16.2 days.

While it may not be easy, it is possible. Changes in employee and employer mindsets are critical to reshape the perceptions and misconceptions as well as create and embrace a balance work-life culture where the reward for hard work is simply some “you” time.  PROJECT: TIME OFF has made some great strides to bring this issue to the forefront and created some amazing campaigns that I encourage you to check out. 

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