Discipline: Hospitality Man
Title: 1. Human resources as a source of competitive advantage
Are any of Westward’s advantages sustainable?
The human resource was the biggest vantage point of Westward Hilton. It is therefore the most sustainable advantage westward has since it is highly flexible. However, in order for human resource to be sustainable, the greatest contribution is mostly associated with the hotel manager. The way the employees are treated, trained and perceived is what contributed to the success of Westward under the leadership of Peter Green (Cathy, 2009). Even with new management, respecting the employees dignity is what will make Westward competitive advantage last. Another advantage likely to last is the superb customer experience that has earned Westward Hilton a great reputation among customers and the hotel industry. It is likely that the management may not compromise such a reputation in the short run.
Are the human resource practices and corporate culture easy for competitors to imitate?
Human resources practices and culture are easy to imitate. Since competitors are always looking at what their competitors are doing right, therefore it is easy for competitors to take similar actions in order to stay at par with their competition or even ahead of them. Like in the case of Peter Green, he used his experience of interacting with the customer from other hotel companies and incorporated them in Westward Hilton. The culture of employee appraisal, non-discrimination and direct communication is easily shifted between competitors. However, the personality of the management responsible with imitating the culture and practices should be flexible and ideal to new ideas (Cathy, 2009).