A: Hospitality is a niche market that sets very high standards for suppliers. For a new product or technology to be adopted by hoteliers, it must help enhance guest satisfaction, positively impact occupancy rates, and increase management efficiencies. In our case, a guest who spends a couple of hundred dollar or more per night for a room expects to find a clean, reliable and easy-to-use room phone, regardless of what personal mobile device they may be carrying.
Q: What drives you?
A: Actually, in early 1990s when I first started the company, I used to tell my staff that my greatest hope was for each of them to drive a black Mercedes sedan, and I still feel that way. I've had great personal success, but have never forgotten how poverty feels, so my overarching desire is for my staff, and the people with whom I interact, to be financially successful. That's what makes me happy, and makes me feel that I am living my life meaningfully.
Q: What are your plans for the future, and does it include hospitality?
A: Yes it does. Based on my estimates of 10+ million hotel rooms globally where our phones have been installed, my goal is to develop a way to capture a minimum $1 per room revenue per night.
Q: That's interesting, because it's known among your management team that you often say Nothing is impossible!. Do you truly believe that statement as it relates to business?
A: Yes, I do, because I'm living proof that the American dream is still achievable to the extent that I've been able to overcome some very difficult life challenges, as well as business challenges over the past 23 years in the hospitality industry, and expect to do so in the future.
Q: Your life story is certainly different, but perhaps still somewhat reminiscent of The Pursuit of Happyness movie with Will Smith. Do you see a connection?
A: Yes, to some extent, and I did enjoy the movie and could certainly relate to Will Smith's ordeals. In fact, because I have received so many encouraging reader comments from the Life Series blog, and have many more details to share, I am expecting to authorize expanded ebook and printed book versions of my life story in the coming months. As Paul Harvey, the famous radio-era commentator, used to say, "Stay tuned for the rest of the story."!