Our thinking

Carley Grelié - Interview with Ian Carter

Ian Carter is President of Global Development, Architecture, Design and Construction for Hilton. With more than 5,000 properties within Hilton’s portfolio, one might expect him to be primarily focused on the bricks and mortar. However, Ian, as one of 11 members on Hilton’s Executive Committee, strikes me as a leader who truly understands the importance of Hilton’s family of guests and Team Members. “Everything about our company and what it does – its role in life – is to serve guests,” states Ian. “We are in an industry of people serving people.”

The travel and tourism industry is the world’s single largest employer, supporting one out of every 10 jobs worldwide. Across its portfolio of 14 brands, in 103 countries, Hilton serves close to one million people per night, in more than 825,000 rooms. This means the Hilton network directly employs more than 360,000 Team Members worldwide.

The Brunswick Perspectives research uncovered that citizens look to business to provide solutions to global problems. The number one area in which citizens consider business can make a positive impact on their country is in providing quality education opportunities. However, suspicions around business motives remain: 80% of respondents believe that business leaders serve, first and foremost, themselves.


I spoke with Ian Carter to determine how Hilton prioritises providing quality education and training opportunities. I wanted to examine how investing in its workforce and the wider community was a win-win for Hilton and the communities it serves. I also wanted to understand how Ian feels Hilton is working to gain the trust of people around the globe.

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