FOXTROTS 

Fox – sly.  Trots – left-leaning (Trotsky) plus its more insalubrious meaning. 

Foxtrots – leading the industry in a dance. 

 

2006 July 30

Easyhotel CEO job. My application.

Dear Stelios

You have met me 2/3 times. I once came to your office to explain to you about dynamic packaging.

I am interested in the Easyhotel CEO job. 

Two statements in particular that I have made about hotels might be relevant to my application:

1. “I can get a higher occupancy than any professional hotelier every day of the year.” (I don’t charge for the rooms.)

2. “Using a phrase over-used by no-frills-airline management, [Easyhotel’s prices in London] are a ‘rip-off’.” 

 

Let me explain. 

Most no-frills-airline (NFA) managers does not understand the NFA business plan. Most hotel managers are even further from understanding a ‘LRH’ (low-rate-hotel) business plan – partly because it has not been written. 

You must already have a sense of this – at least from one of meetings you panelled, where I was present, at ITB in Berlin in March. (So why are you looking for someone with hotel skills?) 

If you don’t choose me to run Easyhotel, you would be better to choose an airline person for this job – but from Air Asia, Easyjet, Ryanair, or Southwest, not the pretenders. (Although working for those four airlines does not automatically bring understanding of the NFA psyche.) 

The success for a LRH will be in cost control and marketing. You don’t need – as the job spec noted – an expert in franchising to run Easyhotel. In fact, I can go further – you should not have a franchise expert in that position. The franchise person can be No 2 or No 3 in the company, as it is a straightforward function. 

The most-important skill would be to apply an NFA business plan to Easyhotel – not to apply a franchising skill to a new type of company. (I hope it was not you who put that requirement in the job spec…)  

In addition, it should be noted that franchising for a LRH business plan could be risky. It can be done – must be done – but nevertheless, some careful thought is needed in advance. 

(Your new master franchiser has plans for 38 properties in the next five years. Man, you should have more than that each year! This could be big, big. Surely you are disappointed at how slow it has been so far?) 

Voila. There you have it.  

I know more about how NFAs work than most who work in them, and many who run them. I know a lot about hotels. Over the past five years I’ve asked hotel management about LRHs. Most don’t get it. I know that running Easyhotel would be more about running an idea than a hotel company. 

My CV won’t tell you much about all of this. And it won’t touch on most items you’ve listed in that job spec. However, I believe you may see that this might not be important for the success of Easyhotel. Let me know when you need to know more. 

 

Yours in anticipation,

The Fox