Industry Update
Press Release 8 April 2021

McNeill Hotels Announces Completion Of Company-Wide Hotel Sales Training On Using “Tech For Touch”

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McNeill Hotel Company

McNeill Hotel Company announced today the completion of the company-wide roll-out of an innovative hotel sales training and coaching program, entitled Hotel Sales Skills for Remote Buyers, delivered by Kennedy Training Network, Inc.

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"This program has helped us put the people part back into hotel sales," said Mark Ricketts, President, "This approach aligns perfectly with McNeill's overall focus on 'people serving people,' which is a core value of our company culture."

"For years now, hotel sales conversations have been taking place more and more by way of email, text and apps," said Kim Knop, Vice President of Sales & Marketing. "The skills our hotel sales leaders have learned will help us stand out in the market long after the pandemic is over."

KTN President, Doug Kennedy, said "With so many hotel companies seeming to just want everything to go back to where it was a year ago, it is just wonderful to see McNeill recognizing that disruption creates opportunities to stand out from the rest." Kennedy added, "Our relationship with The McNeill Hotel Company has been such a collaborative experience. From day one, everyone we have worked with from the C-suite level to the field has treated us like a partner, not just a vendor."

KTN's three-part sales training process begins with a private, live webcam training, delivered individually for each sales manager or director. Next, leaders return for a private role-play sales coaching event, followed by an accountability session a few weeks later for reporting back on how they have used the new tools as part of their daily sales habits. The program covers using an online scheduling app to make it easier to schedule conversations and not just settle for endless email exchanges; truly mastering sales presentation skills for selling to remote buyers via online meeting platforms (i.e. Zoom or Teams); and how to record and send personalized video email messages.

Tracy Walkup, Director of Sales, Homewood Suites, Carmel, IN said "This technology and instruction has been invaluable – really game changing. Not only have clients responded, but it has helped me stay engaged and excited, which is more essential than ever in these challenging times."

"These tools truly do set us apart from our competitors. There are two brand new hotels that are literally our neighbors. In using my KTN training, I have been able to knock my comp set out of the park in RevPAR week after week," said Eric Gillum, Sales Manager at the Home2 Suites, Gainesville, FL.

Christian Madsen, Director of Sales, Hilton Garden Inn Portland/Beaverton added, "This training opened me up to a new way of expressing my appreciation to my clients. In this world of long-distance buyers, we are now able to connect on a level that builds the foundation of a partnership."

About Kennedy Training Network

KTN is the lodging and hospitality industry's go-to source for hotel training programs and related services in topic areas of hotel sales, catering/event sales, reservations selling, and hospitality & guest service excellence. KTN President Doug Kennedy has been a fixture on the lodging and tourism conference speaking circuit for over three decades. Hoteliers worldwide read his monthly hotel, tourism and hospitality industry sales training articles in this publication and elsewhere. Visit www.kennedytrainingnetwork.com or [email protected]

About McNeill Hotel Company

Headquartered in Germantown, Tennessee, McNeill Hotel Company is built on a foundation of trust, pursuit of excellence and a philosophy of "people serving people." The firm focuses on select-service hotels with a growth strategy based on a mix of new hotel development, meaningful acquisitions and third party management agreements. The company is an approved franchisee for both Marriott and Hilton. Phillip McNeill, Jr. and Mark Ricketts, the company's principals, are 2nd generation hoteliers with over 60 years of combined institutional experience in the hotel industry, encompassing nearly every discipline of the business. For more information, visit www.mcneillhotels.com

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