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Jim Phelan, Director of Analytics & Business Intelligence

Favorite Pillar/Value: Innovation

It’s no surprise that ‘innovation’ is Jim’s favorite CoralTree value since innovation has driven his career in hospitality. Though he stumbled into hospitality by following his girlfriend (now his wife) to work at a hotel for the summer in Mackinac Island, MI, he found the experience life-changing. “Hospitality felt natural and was exciting. Turning around a guest’s experience from bad to good was such a unique challenge and very rewarding.”

Following this job, Jim’s positions focused on service and operations. As a concierge at The Carolina Inn in Chapel Hill, NC, he regularly met The University of North Carolina sports personalities and athletes, but meeting basketball Coach Dean Smith was a highlight. “He was a very inspiring person and made me rethink how I interact with people. Once he met you he never forgot your name, and even late in his years he was very warm and welcoming.”

But it was Jim’s desire to learn about revenue management that led him to a big career change with Destination Hotels. As he puts it, “The team took a chance on me when they hired me as Director of Revenue.” It paid off. In 2011, he achieved a personal goal by winning the Revenue Optimizer of the Year Award, and it remains a huge source of pride. “This trophy is still on my top shelf even though I’ve won other awards through the years.”

Jim continues to innovate and is now responsible for the development and implementation of a new business intelligence platform across CoralTree Hospitality’s portfolio, and he also oversees data reporting and identifying key trends that impact business.

Jim draws inspiration from the outdoors, and it’s fitting that he and his family call the Colorado mountains home, where they regularly travel to attend high school sporting events for his two sons. They frequently turn these trips into mini vacations as a way to explore the grandeur of Colorado.

However, to paint a picture of his favorite travel memory, you need the blue of the Pacific. “Visiting Hawaii had always been a goal for me and my wife throughout our life together, and we finally traveled there to celebrate my 40th birthday. My favorite memory was watching the sunset from the North Shore while we were floating in the water with some sea turtles, and our sons played catch. The sky was ablaze with color.”

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