Marriott Vacations Worldwide (MVW) is an organization that is constantly evolving. The last two years of the global pandemic and its multiple shutdowns highly impacted the travel and hospitality sector and ushered the company into a state of reinvention—one they are handling quite successfully. The organization’s EVP and CHRO Mike Yonker spoke with me recently about the redesign of HR during the pandemic and an acquisition that nearly doubled the size and scope of the company.
“It’s really been a chance to think about how we support our business and how we support our associates,” he says. “We are not resting on our laurels. I think reinvention is such a great word during this time of change.”
A top priority during the first months of the acquisition was creating a shared vision for the growing company, which now is “building long-lasting relationships with our customers and associates to help them live their lives to the fullest.”
“I think that step in and of itself is so critical to our future—making sure that we were all included and involved in the decision-making as we move forward with this now larger company that nearly doubled in size,” he says.
What’s up next for 2022? “We will be reevaluating our employee value proposition because what got us to where we are today will not necessarily get us to where we want to go next. I’ve been with Marriott’s family of companies for nearly 40 years, and one thing I know for certain is that we can’t become complacent about our success,” he explains. “We must continuously evolve—which is one of our company pillars—both for our customers, and our associates because we can’t assume that what worked for us yesterday will work for us today or tomorrow.”
If anything, the pandemic has taught organizations how critical it is to be agile. “It’s always important to be able to look back and learn from the road we’ve traveled, but if we spend too much time looking in the rearview mirror, we might miss what’s ahead of us. We must keep our eyes trained on the road ahead to best navigate every twist and turn,” he says.
Hear more from Yonker, the 2020 CHRO of the Year award winner for lifetime achievement, in our cover story, Reinvention at its Finest, on page 12.