Georgetown Retail & Luxury Association

Georgetown Retail & Luxury Association

Bringing Retail & Luxury to the Hilltop.

A Luxury Journey with Chairman Emeritus & Founding Partner of The Ritz-Carlton, Herve Humler

ON MARCH 20, GRLA HAD THE HONOR OF HOSTING HERVE HUMLER, CHAIRMAN EMERITUS & FOUNDING PARTNER OF THE RITZ-CARLTON

Pictured: GRLA Team and Stephen Jennings and Herve Humler

Pictured: GRLA Team and Stephen Jennings and Herve Humler

With charisma and elegance, Mr. Humler took his audience on a journey. Those in the audience could not help but spend the entirety of his presentation dreaming of themselves in the shoes of a guest at The Ritz-Carlton, having a meal cooked for them at the beach while they watch the sunset, drinking a glass of the best champagne. According to Mr. Humler, it is this type of experience that keeps luxury hotels alive. Under his management, employees are encouraged to create what he calls “WOW Stories,” the type of experiences that create long-lasting memories. Throughout his conversation with Stephen Jennings, the leader of the U.S. Hospitality sector at Deloitte, Mr. Humler outlined the secret of how The Ritz-Carlton and the other hotels under his management continuously engage with client’s emotions, and how these become engraved as some of their best memories.

A full house at Fisher Colloquium Auditorium where the event was held.

A full house at Fisher Colloquium Auditorium where the event was held.

        To Mr. Humler, the success of The Ritz-Carlton lies in its values and in how it trains its employees, both of which are highlighted in the company’s Gold Standards. At The Ritz-Carlton, employees are expected to be themselves, while treating their clients in a warm, relaxed and refined manner.  They are reminded every day of their mission to create “WOW Stories,” and are trained to be flexible and address clients in the most human and interactive way possible; they are not there to recite a manual, but to engage and have honest interactions with all guests. In an industry where many things are prescribed (the times where you can have certain meals, when and where they can serve you certain amenities), empowering employees with flexibility allows them to provide customers with tailored experiences. The Ladies and Gentlemen, as The Ritz Carlton calls its employees, are the soul and heart of its brand, interacting with clients morning, afternoon and night.

        In addition to empowering employees and establishing a strong corporate culture, Mr. Humler shared his other secret to success: to “always stay humble.” He told the audience a story about the beginning of his career.  As a young assistant manager of room service, he longed for a promotion, and he was assured that he would get it. His ego got in the way, and he did not get the job. However, he realized that the person who got it was an outstanding employee and truly deserved it. After this incident, Mr. Humler learned that nothing comes for granted and that one has to be always in a process of self improvement. He learned that success comes from staying humble, having patience, and always striving for your personal best while doing what you love.

Students could not resist asking countless questions after the event!

Students could not resist asking countless questions after the event!

Herve Humler captivated us with his incredible success story, and the subsequent success of The Ritz-Carlton. He left his audience genuinely inspired, as his natural charm and determination were incredibly powerful. Thank you, to Mr. Humler and The Ritz-Carlton team for this amazing event!

FOLLOW @GRLAGEORGETOWN