The Layover: Q&A with Matt

My Place Hotels EVP/General Counsel Matt Campbell recently took time out of his busy schedule to discuss all things My Place. From reflecting on his time as a speaker at the 2019 ALIS Law conference in Los Angeles to looking ahead at what the future holds for My Place, Matt covers some ground on this short Layover.

  1. Describe your job in ten words or less:
    • Legal and administrative oversight of the company’s operations.
  2. On the panel at the ALIS conference, it was very clear that the safety and security of guests are at the top of your list. Why is that and how do you think we are communicating that to every person our brand reaches?
    • We are in the hospitality business. My Place’s objective is to provide a clean, comfortable, and affordable lodging option for all guests. In today’s world of countless digital threats, focusing on guest security is paramount to ensuring a comfortable experience at every My Place Hotel. We hope to convey this message at all stages of the booking process and, most importantly, while the guest is on-site at our hotels.
  3. What was your biggest takeaway from the ALIS conference and how will you apply that takeaway to the work you do?
    • As a speaker at ALIS Law, I was reminded that while our brand is relatively fresh to market, our team at My Place HQ is just as keen on industry trends and threats as any other hotel company. Being located in South Dakota, it’s good to remember that your industry knowledge and understanding is on par with the attorneys, developers, and other brands located throughout the United States. Actively applying this confidence in all business units, whether it is marketing, revenue management, or national sales, will continue to be the takeaway as we set our sights on opening our 50th hotel in the coming months.
  4. What is keeping you up at night and how do you get to sleep?
    • There are a number of hot button issues that are continually on my radar and likely other general counsel. These issues change frequently, but they include fraudulent booking scams, joint-employer issues, ‘surf by’ lawsuits, cyber security threats, and other wide-ranging digital threats that impose not only financial concern but possess a reputational threat. Staying aware of the general issues allows us to plan ahead and establish the processes and procedures necessary to confront problems immediately and with the appropriate level of priority.
  5. Where do you see My Place ten years from now?
    • My Place’s initial years of franchising have been extremely exciting and rewarding for everyone involved. The growth we will continue to experience over the next ten years will certainly provide new challenges, but we are up for the task. Our objective remains focused on achieving 1,000+ open hotels and I hope to have surpassed that mark by then.
  6. What is the smartest decision you have ever been a part of making during your time at My Place?
    • I am fortunate to be able to say that I have assisted in assembling the great team we have today at My Place HQ. The team is composed of proven industry veterans and a few hospitality newcomers. This mix allows our team to draw on the experience of the past as we innovate and modernize our products, processes, and procedures to meet the needs of today’s guest and hotel operator.
  7. What’s the most ridiculous thing you ever purchased?
    • I once bought a treadmill for my house. Unfortunately, I got more exercise moving it into my house (and eventually out of my house) than I ever got running on it.
  8. If you could change or create one trend in the hospitality industry, which/what would it be and why?
    • I would like to further My Place’s mission of providing value to the guest without compromising the quality and condition of the hotel. Too often today, hotel brands require too many underutilized amenities and features that do not provide equivalent value to their typical guest or the hotel operator. We’ll continue seeking out the amenities and features necessary to balance the needs of the guest and the operator’s bottom line in every decision we make.
  9. If you could open a My Place in one dream location anywhere in the world, where would it be?
    • This is a great question, but we already have My Place Hotels in areas that I consider dream locations such as our locations in Alaska and Arizona. Anchorage and Ketchikan have incredible views, outdoor activities, and are remarkably close to world class fishing opportunities. The Phoenix area hotels will be in close proximity to pristine golf courses. However, I wouldn’t mind seeing a My Place (or two) get developed off a beach in Hawaii. I will volunteer my time to conduct the quality assurance inspections!
  10. What is the greatest moment you have had so far at My Place?
    • In my almost four years with My Place, I’ve witnessed a number of great accomplishments and milestones. In fact, too many to only pick out one. A consistent factor of each has been the people. We have great staff at My Place HQ and fantastic franchisees that make challenging moments less difficult and the successful days more rewarding.
As a husband, father, executive, and community leader (in that order), Matt finds balance with an active home life that’s completed by hockey outings and projects with his family.