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HFTP Annual Convention — Invest in Yourself

Written by: Jessica Vint, CHAE

Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others.

Unsuccessful people are always asking, “what’s in it for me?”

The inspirational author Dr. Stephen Covey once said, “strength lies in differences, not in similarities.” This quote encapsulates a large part of the HFTP Annual Convention. If you have ever attended, then you understand the quote. If you haven’t, you owe yourself the opportunity to participate and come to learn from the insight of other long-serving HFTP members.

HFTP is an association that frequently, generously and effectively provides education dedicated to the furthering of the hospitality industry. Having been a part of the industry for over 20 years, means I have a lot of information in my head that could no doubt help others with their hospitality challenges and hiccups. In my experience as an active member of HFTP for more than 10 years, I have found a large part of the membership falls into the “successful people” category as stated above.

So here we are, over 500 wonderful hospitality driven people all networking in the same hotel, in the same meetings, in the same education sessions with all of our differences… sharing our knowledge to help others. If you think about it, how much more “priceless” can you get? Read More »

Adding Diversity and Taking the Scare out of the Visa Process in the Club and Hospitality Industries

Written by: Keith A. Pabian

As someone that often speaks about visas and U.S. Lawful Permanent Residency (green cards), there are two common looks that I see in the audience when I start my presentations – a look of dread that the presentation will be boring (visas – yawn!) and one of apprehension (the visa process – that is so much work!).

As much as I would like to think that I give fun and engaging presentations, the fact is that by the end of the presentation, most in the audience are excited about the possibility of adding a diverse, multicultural staff to their existing workforce and one that is often more professional than what can be found using seasonal college students and young adults.

Traditionally, many in the U.S. hospitality and club industries have used the J-1 visa when hiring and employing foreign nationals. The J-1 visa is a temporary visa that goes through a third party company/program administrator and is usually valid for four to 12 months in duration. The hospitality organization/club is not the employer or visa sponsor; rather, it is a client of the J-1 visa program that sponsors the foreign national.

There has been a recent and ongoing trend in the hospitality and club industries to break away from the J-1 visa as organizations look to take control of their visa processes rather than go through third-party J-1 visa programs. Additionally, I hear more and more opinions from those in the hospitality and club industries that a more experienced and professional international workforce can be achieved using the H-2B seasonal visa. Another benefit is that it can be easier for the employer to bring back the same employee year after year on the H-2B visa, allowing for less training, more familiarity between the employer, employee, and the employer’s customers/patrons, and less stress in wondering if the employee will be a good staff member.

The H-2B seasonal visa is available for up to 10 months in duration and can be applied for annually. We help those in the hospitality and club industries to define their seasons of need – meaning what periods are the H-2B visa workers needed and what are the busiest months of the year for these organizations. Once the H-2B visa process is implemented, it can be a very straightforward visa route for organizations year after year.

The biggest challenge surrounding the H-2B visa process is ensuring that there is enough time to go through the application process. We always advise clients to start the process five months prior to the date that they need their H-2B visa workers. Therefore, if your organization is interested in learning more about the H-2B visa process, it is worth starting the discussions as early as possible to ensure that there is enough time to go through the process.

If your organization is interested in a diverse, multicultural, and professional workforce, it may be worth looking into the fun and not at all scary world of visas!

To learn more about adding international employees to your workforce and navigating the visa process attend the upcoming HFTP Prolinks Webinar on September 18, 2014 at 2:00 p.m. CST.

Keith A. Pabian is an immigration attorney at Pabian Law, LLC.  He has developed a unique niche in representing organizations in the club and hospitality industries across the United States in visa and immigration matters. He can be reached at keith@pabianlaw.com or +1 (617) 939-9444. This article was prepared for educational use only.


Written by: Monica Henegar

When I received the email about the upcoming HFTP Club and Hotel Controllers Conference and saw the location was sunny Los Angeles, which I have traveled through but never really had a chance to explore, I decided that I wanted to go. The “why” never came up until I actually submitted the request for approval to my employer, and had to make a case for it.

HFTP is the first professional organization that I have belonged to, aside from my professional accounting association. Initially, I was invited along to the local chapter meetings, which take place monthly at different clubs and hotels in the area. Other than the attraction of great lunches and wines mid-day, as each property brings out their best to impress the rest, the sessions always provided interesting and varied educational topics that I was able to apply in my daily work. Read More »

Now Presenting — The HFTP Regional Mentor Program

Written by: Danielle Chong

HFTP is thrilled to announce the addition of a NEW member benefit. Starting in September, members have access to a Regional Mentor in their geographic area. The Regional Mentor program was designed to accommodate the needs and wants of the current membership, as well as to draw in additional prospective members. Regional Mentors are chosen representatives who exemplify leadership and the guiding principles of HFTP. Read More »

Bi-annual HFTP Compensation & Benefits Survey Released

Written by: Tanya Venegas

Results of the 2012 HFTP Compensation & Benefits Survey are available. In addition to providing basic compensation and benefits information such as salaries, bonuses and retirement plans; the survey digs a little deeper by analyzing other various factors such as certifications, property characteristics, and demographic information. This information can be utilized for multiple purposes including salary comparisons, budgeting processes, staffing guidelines, contract negotiation and benefit standards. Read More »

Summary of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012

Written by: By Mayur T. Dalal

On January 1, 2013, both the United States Senate and the House of Representatives passed the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012. Here are some key highlights of the new “Act.” These provisions are effective for the 2013 tax year, except where otherwise specified. With over 100 changes to the Tax Code, we have put together a summary of the changes that will impact businesses. Read More »

Job Prospects and the Value of Graduate Education in the Hospitality Industry

Written by: Sophia Foster

As today’s students enter college and select a degree program, many employment outlook analysts are urging them to consider a career in hospitality management, citing both projected industry growth and a widespread lack of skilled job candidates. Read More »

HFTP Plans for Another Great Year of Education

Written by: Sharon Litchfield, CHAE

One of the more important councils for HFTP is the Education Advisory Council, of which I had the pleasure of serving. Finding the right theme, keynote speakers and education topics for the HFTP Annual Convention and the Club and Hotel Controllers Conference are the most important tasks they face. This sets the tone for the events and what you take away from it. The council is currently planning for another fantastic year of education in 2013, so if you have any ideas for a session, please submit it to the council (submission guidelines)! You have a chance to share your knowledge and expertise with the attendees of the Club and Hotel Controllers Conference and/or the Annual Convention & Tradeshow. Read More »

Pay or Play? Deciding on Employee Health Care Coverage

Written by: Jane Schmitz, CHAE

Pay or Play?

I started my second day listening to the Thursday Keynote’s, Shawn Achor’s, excellent presentation on how concentrating on the positives improves your career success. I ended the day wondering how I was going to apply his principles to dealing with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act after attending the government update session with Brad Steele.

Every club, hotel and business in America with over 50 full time employees has a very difficult decision ahead of them. To Pay or to Play? Do we pay the fines and not offer employee health insurance, or do we offer employee health insurance and pay the fines? Yes, there are fines in both of those options, it is not a typo. Read More »

Building a Chapter Web Site: Part 1

Written by: Jim Wisniewski

As board members of the Greater Nashville Chapter of the HFTP, we find ourselves often wondering two things: How can we build our membership, and how can we engage our membership on a more regular basis? Fairly typical questions for most businesses, but considering the wealth of resources that HFTP and its members provide, responding to the challenge becomes a great opportunity for all of the individual HFTP chapters through their web sites. Read More »

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