Human Resources Management

The Human Dimension: A Review of Human Resources Management Issues in the Tourism and Hospitality Industry“, by Salih Kusluvan, Zeynep Kusluvan, Ibrahim Ilhan, and Lutfi Buyruk, all of the University of Nevsehir, Turkey, was one of the most frequently read articles in Cornell Quarterly in 2010. Professor Salih Kusluvan has provided additional background on the article:

Tell the story behind the article.  What prompted you to do this research and write this article? Do you have any specific memories about doing the research, writing or the review/publishing process that you would like to share?

All of my co-authors and I graduated from different tourism and hospitality management schools in the late 1980’s in Turkey. We all started to work in the tourism industry after graduation. However, having seen the poor working conditions and human resources management practices in the industry, we looked for other job opportunities  and started to work as research assistants in Nevsehir Tourism and Hotel Management School (now Faculty of Tourism) in the early 1990’s. It was our first hand experience and disappoinment with the HRM practices in the industry as well as our students’ constant complaints of the HRM practices both during the internship and after graduation that kept our interest on the HRM issues and practices in the tourism and hospitality industry. Being aware of our interest in HRM issues,  Prof. Chris Ryan (editor of Tourism Management) asked the lead author, Prof. Dr. Salih Kusluvan, to write a chapter on HRM for a Handbook of Tourism Management to be published by Sage Publications in 2006. But when we finished the chapter we learned that the handbook project was canceled. Then, we sent the manuscript to the editors of Annals of Tourism Research and Tourism Management for considiration to be published in respective journals. The editors rejected the manuscript on the grounds that it was too long. Lucklily, Professor Linda Canina, the editor of Cornell Hospitality Quarterly, gave us a chance and the manuscript was accepted for publication by two of the three referees.

As the author of one of the most read article in 2010, why do you think this research is important? Why are people reading it and who else should be exposed to it?

Our work is important because many bright and qualifed students who have studied tourism and hospitality management never start to work in the tourism industry after graduation, or they leave the industry after a few years of work due to poor HRM practices and working conditions.  We think that this should be a concern for managers in the tourism and hospitality industry as well as educational institutions and government officials responsible for education, industry and labour. We guess the appeal of our work for readers lies in the summary of vast amount of HRM literature in tourism over the past 25 years in a concrete and usefull framework.

Give us a specific review of the impact of this article. What additional research has this article led to (either your own or other’s)?

We have received many congratulations from many of our friends and colleages in Turkey and worldwide. We have also received proposals for joint research projects on HRM issues in tourism.

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