Bilingual Business Leader Program,Core Curriculum of Department of Business

EAP 2 Students Learn about Global Leadership from Hilton Tokyo Bay General Manager Mr. Neil McInnes

Updated on: June 16, 2015|  PrintPrint

McInnesProfileJPG (2).jpgMr. Neil McInnes, General Manager of Hilton Tokyo Bay, visited Rikkyo University on June 11, 2015 to speak to the COB students enrolled in EAP 2 about his twenty-year career with the global hospitality company Hilton. Mr. McInnes shared invaluable advice with the students about the skills and qualities needed to be a successful global business leader based on his vast experience working for Hilton in countries such as Scotland, Wales, England, Ireland, Australia, Micronesia, Korea, and Japan.

To begin, he stressed that a fundamental value of a good leader is how they coach their team. Mr. McInnes currently leads a team of over 500 members at Hilton Tokyo Bay, and thinks that a leader is only as strong as their team. He believes in leading by example and working to build trust among team members. He explained that although earning trust takes time, it is crucial to the success of a team because a leader needs to be able to delegate duties to people who are dependable and capable of doing the job. He explained that at Hilton, the concept of coaching and mentoring is key to developing leadership amongst employees.
Next, Mr. McInnes advised the students how to prepare to be future global leaders. He stressed the importance of reading international news daily, learning a third language such as Mandarin or Spanish, possessing both cultural and self awareness, understanding the global aspects of companies, cultivating presentation skills, and taking advantage of opportunities to travel the world. He challenged the students to have the courage to work toward achieving their goals. He explained that is it crucial to take risks and not be inhibited by the fear of failure. He told the students that without taking risks, success cannot be achieved; and failure can also be a learning experience to grow from.
Mr. McInnes’ popular presentation was followed by a lively Q&A session. He kindly responded to a plethora of questions from the students. One student wanted to know Hilton’s plans to increase the number of female managers in its organization, another student was interested in hearing more about how intercultural communication can be improved in the Japan context, and another keen listener inquired about Mr. McInnes’ new personal goal since recently being appointed the General Manager of Hilton Tokyo Bay. Time ran out before all the students’ questions could be addressed, but Mr. McInnes’ kindly spoke to the long line of students who were eager to continue their conversation with him after the end of the presentation.
Student feedback for the guest lecture was overwhelmingly positive and Mr. McInnes’ talk spurred interest in Hilton’s management development program for new graduates. Students were drawn both to Hilton’s future growth prospects in Asia Pacific as well as the company’s CSR initiatives. One female student, Ms. Tsugumi Nagai, expressed interest in a future management position in the hotel industry. As more companies like Hilton strive for gender diversity at the management level, increasing opportunities will become available for talented female business students like Ms. Nagai who will have a chance to take on future leadership roles in the hospitality industry. 
Report and photos by Melanie Czarnecki


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