IT’S NOT THE FINE PRINT, BUT WHO SIGNED IT

June 23, 2015
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Three times in the past two months, I received calls from hotel executives relating the most most damning experience: in one case, a position of General Manager for a major luxury hotel was very “sloppily” extended to two different candidates. Due to an embarrassing misunderstanding and communications breakdown between the property and the corporate office, a candidate had received an email notifying him that he was no longer being considered for the position of General Manager. Disappointed, he certainly was. However he was baffled when he received a call from the CEO of the management company congratulating him on getting the job…

The second instance was possibly more bizarre yet: a gainfully employed and most respectable hotelier was extended a detailed offer as General Manager of another property in the same city. A gracious professional, he gave ample notice to his current employer, realizing he was taking the risk of being released on the spot. One week before starting his new job, however, his new employer notified him of the fact that ownership of the hotel, after signing off on his profile, had been convinced by someone in their circle of influence, to consider another candidate. Here was our friend not only jobless, but also homeless, as his previous job included housing, a rare perk in the US.

On another occasion a candidate who had been interviewed for a position of Chief Operating Officer, discovered, in reading his letter of offer, that he was in fact going in as President of the company, at a salary 20% higher than what had been agreed upon.

The letter of offer or employment contract should bear two signatures and/or indicate the following sentence:
I________ Executive Vice President of Brand X Hotels, am fully authorized to make the decision to hire ________ in the position of__________ with both Management Company and Hotel Ownership, at such salary and with such title.

The General Manager and the Director of Finance, unless they are naive, already know that they need to be endorsed by both the Management Company and Ownership.

Watch your step.

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