Successful Meetings - October 2008 - (Page 10)

News & Analysis > On The Record Leading Industry Analyst Turns to Teaching Numbers and quantitative analysis may come easy to some but for many, the deciphering of such information is about as simple as calculating the national deficit. Since 1990, the caped crusader who has made the process of breaking down hotel industry data painless was Bjorn Hanson, global industry leader of PricewaterhouseCoopers’ (PwC) hospitality and leisure practice, which he founded. He fought the crime of illogical room rate hikes and dips with logical and even colorful analysis. Like all good things, Hanson’s analyst career had to come to an end sooner or later. Fortunately for some of the meeting and hospitality industry’s future leaders, he has been moonlighting—in a manner of speaking—for his entire career in industry education. This month he will report for full-time duty as a clinical associate professor at New York University’s (NYU) Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism and Sports Management. Before he went back to school, Hanson paused for some reflection. Clinical at various schools, including NYU, where I taught managerial finance for 16 years. SM: What do you like about being an educator? HANSON: It is truly exciting to plan, prepare, and deliver a lecture and then to assess students’ understanding of the material. I especially enjoy teaching material that is totally new or that may be intimidating to some students, such as statistics or econometrics. When a lecture is successful, it is incredibly exciting to see the comprehension, enthusiasm, and self-confidence of the students. SM: Why did you make this career change now? HANSON: In 2007 I reached the age that is politely described as the one when there is no longer a discount for early retirement, so it was time to think about what to do next. I had been involved with NYU in many ways including serving as a member of the adjunct faculty, receiving my Ph.D. there, chairing the executive committee Associate and advisory board of the hospitality Professor, NYU SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS: In the announceschool, speaking at the NYU International ment of your hiring, you said education has Hospitality Investment Conference, and so been a passion of yours throughout your career. Can you on. NYU was seeking new faculty members, so the timing was elaborate? great for me to discuss my future with the school. Joining the NYU faculty doesn’t seem to me to be a career change. BJORN HANSON: I considered two career paths when I was Instead, it feels like a natural next step in my consulting and in college: hospitality consulting and hospitality education. The education career. consulting opportunities upon graduation were exactly what I was seeking, and with limited professional experience and SM: How do you think your students will benefit from your without graduate degrees, hospitality education was not as PwC experience? appropriate an option. But I never lost my interest in hospitality education and was fortunate to be invited to be a guest lecHANSON: I have been fortunate to have worked on many of turer at Cornell, NYU, and several community colleges soon the largest, most complex, and most interesting transactions, after graduation, and I pursued my MBA and Ph.D. while worklitigations and arbitrations, and other consulting assignments ing. in our industry. Unfortunately, I can’t reveal any details without Consulting provided an intellectually stimulating and financlients’ written permission, but they were great experiences. cially rewarding career that allowed me to be a guest lecturer And I enjoyed the support of PricewaterhouseCoopers (and BJORN HANSON 10 OCTOBER 2008 SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Successful Meetings - October 2008

Successful Meetings - October 2008
Editor's Note
Supplier News
On the Record
Planner News
Planner Spotlight
Personal Success
Technology Talk
Food &Beverage
Tools of the Trade
On Site
Technology for Modern Meetings
A Tale of Two Cities
A Cast of Thousands
Places & Spaces
Mexican Destination Resorts
New Orleans
Lake Tahoe / Reno

Successful Meetings - October 2008