The Hilton Effect: 100 years of global influence

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The Hilton Effect

As Hilton heads toward a milestone 100th anniversary in 2019, new research has unveiled its impact around the world.

In a new book titled The Hilton Effect, Stanford business professor and best-selling author, Chip Heath presents a closer examination of the company founded by Conrad Hilton. To mark the book’s launch, a series of films have been developed telling the stories of the Hilton Effect across the Asia Pacific and beyond.

Hilton opened its first property in Asia Pacific, Tokyo Hilton, in 1963, and has since expanded to more than 750 hotels open and under development, opening more than one hotel a week. In fact, nearly one in four hotel rooms currently under construction in the region, and one in three rooms under construction in China carries a Hilton flag.

“We’ve witnessed the incredibly positive impact travel and tourism can have”

Alan Watts, president, Asia Pacific, Hilton, said: “We believe the world is a better place because Hilton was born into it one hundred years ago. Over the course of our 55-year history in the Asia Pacific, we’ve witnessed the incredibly positive impact travel and tourism can have. Today, as the centre of gravity in travel continues to shift to this part of the world, we aim to continue our pioneering spirit and be a beacon for hospitality.”

Hilton Effect APAC Hero Film from APAC Comms Team on Vimeo.

The Hilton Effect is the positive, world-altering impact that Hilton has had on billions of lives and thousands of communities around the globe – entering new travel markets and bringing people and cultures together to make the world feel smaller.

Heath focused on three areas that he argues define The Hilton Effect:

The Hilton Effect on guests

Hilton has influenced guests by easing travel and broadening perspectives – changing travel as we know it through a century of firsts, from air conditioning to a mobile-centric hotel room; creating the modern business travel industry; and innovating the guest experience, from the first concierge service for female travellers over 50 years ago, to unexpected moments at the breakfast bar.

The Hilton Effect on team members

Hilton has impacted millions of employees by fostering the entrepreneurial spirit and autonomy that Conrad Hilton established.

With 50,000 people currently working in Hilton’s hotels and corporate offices in the Asia Pacific, the company was this year named Asia’s best multinational workplace by Great Place to Work. Hilton plans to create more than 100,000 new jobs across the region in the years ahead.

The Hilton Effect on communities and economies

Hilton has been the first to enter numerous emerging markets around the globe. All across the Asia Pacific, Hilton’s team members have spearheaded initiatives to engage the larger community where Hilton operates.

For example, in India, Hilton works with the non-profit organisation Sundara to promote good hygiene practices and positively impact people in the communities in Mumbai through their soap recycling partnership. This helps decrease the number of children and families suffering from gastrointestinal problems or skin problems like boils and rashes.

Since 2011, more than 1,800 Hilton hotels have been involved in soap and amenity recycling, diverting more than 816 tons of soap from landfill and distributing over 7,000,000 new bars of soap.

“The stories that emerged were even more remarkable”

Heath concluded: “Most organisations celebrating their 100th birthday would be content to throw themselves a party, but Hilton opted to hire a pair of sceptical outsiders – business authors with backgrounds in social science – to examine its impact on the world. The stories that emerged were even more remarkable than we initially suspected and what Hilton employees considered to be just another day at work was quite extraordinary.”

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