Tisch’s ‘Power’ Is About Partnerships
Inhis new book, CEO of Loews Hotels and Tufts graduate JonathanTisch talks about adhering to principles of partnership –not only in the corporate world, but also with the community.Medford/Somerville,Mass.
Medford/Somerville, Mass. [11.17.04] Jonathan A. Tisch may be the CEO of a large hotel chain,but in his new book “The Power of We,” he attributeshis and his family’s success to the establishment of cooperativepartnerships.
“The power ofpartnerships begins with the recognition that no organizationexists in a vacuum,” the Tufts trustee and 1976 graduatewrites. “We can achieve success and prosperity only by workingeffectively with others.”
Tisch, chairmanand CEO of Loews Hotels, got the idea for the book from a seriesof talks he had been giving around the country.
“The thoughtsare important in this age of CEOs being hauled off in handcuffs,”Tisch said in an online chat on Forbes.com. “We should allbe working together.”
This fall, the 50-year-oldTisch embarked on a 14-city tour to promote the book and his viewson business partnerships – including a stop at his almamater.
The best partnerships,Tisch believes, are mutually beneficial.
“When you partner,you work together to help and better yourself, while doing thesame for the group that you are working with. And this is notjust for CEOs,” he told Forbes.com.
One of Tisch’smost successful relationships has been with the city of MiamiBeach, with whom he worked in the mid-1990s to build a large resorton the oceanfront.
In an unconventionalpitch, Tisch showed city commissioners a video of himself dressedas a woman, talking to beachgoers.
The LoewsMiami Beach eventually became the chain’s most successfuland helped spark a hotel boom in the city, The Miami Heraldreported.
“I thinkpart of the reason Miami Beach is doing well is because the Loewsgot built,” Scott Brush, a Florida hotel consultant, toldthe Herald.
The Tisch family enjoysa vast business empire, which includes the Loews Corp. holdingcompany and half of the New York Giants, among other companies,and once included CBS and the Loews theater chain. Tisch’sfather, Preston Robert Tisch, and his uncle Laurence Tisch onceboth sat on the Forbes 400 list. Laurence Tisch died last November.
His family’ssuccess was also inspirational in writing the book.
“My father andlate uncle were the perfect example of partners,” Tischtold Forbes.com “My father was the one who would run thecompanies that Larry would buy.”
This spring, Tischparticipated in a show on The Learning Channel called “NowWho’s Boss?” where he rolled up his sleeves and doveinto the housekeeping, room service, kitchen and bellman choresthat his employees perform each day.
For Tisch, the showrecalled the values he espouses in his book.
“I was remindedhow important it is for all departments in the hotel to coordinatetheir activities and work together,” he told The LearningChannel. As a result of his appearance on the show, senior managersthroughout the hotel chain will have to go through a similar experienceof performing their employees’ duties.
The close relationshipbetween management and employees will not be entirely unfamiliar.
“Even prior tothis experience, I have spent a lot of time with our employeesand at Loews Hotels, we pride ourselves as being part of a family,”Tisch told The Learning Channel. “This experience probablybrought the family closer together.”
This attitude he favorsis far different from the cutthroat corporate mentality conveyedon reality shows like “The Apprentice.”
“What is interestingabout the young people on “The Apprentice” is thatthey start out all playing nicely in the sandbox. But then, theonly way they can succeed is to stab each other, pretty much inthe front, not the back. This is a bad message,” Tisch saidin the Forbes.com chat.
But, like any businessman,he is aware that getting his company featured on a televisionshow pays large dividends in the form of exposure.
“We’renot as large as our competitors,” Tisch told Timemagazine, “so we have to use creativity.”