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Date of publication: Jan 15, 2018

Thomas Mayrhofer

Area General Manager
InterContinental Hotels & Resorts
life.intercontinental.com

Date of birth: April 26, 1966

Hometown: Salzburg, Austria

Number of years in Japan (cumulative): 2.5 (as of December 2017)

Thomas Mayrhofer
Q1: What was your first encounter with Japan?

My first encounter with Japan was in 1986. The hotel I was working in at the time had a Japanese restaurant with three Japanese chefs, who spent every day delivering an authentic experience to guests. I was mesmerized by their meticulous attention to detail and the incredible consistency they were able to achieve in every dish. They truly perfected their skills and delivered each and every day — wow!

Q2: Please state your motto in life and why you have chosen it.

Continue to learn and extend yourself into the unknown, always with a smile on your face. Every day is a learning opportunity! Always be true and grateful for every opportunity given. 
Respect is something earned and does not come with your title.

Q3 : Over your career, what achievement are you the proudest of?

For many years I would have said it was achieving some great financial results, but as I’ve gotten older, and hopefully wiser, I have realized it is about people. I feel that my greatest achievements have been building future leaders and motivating teams to perform at their best. Legacy is about how people remember you and about doing the right thing at the right time.

Q4 : What are your goals during your time in Japan, your current position or in life?

I want to leave a personal legacy with my teams so as not to be just another expatriate who works here for a while and then leaves. My focus is on growing our future leaders and mentoring them in a lasting manner, while at the same time retaining the sense of attention to detail and perfection of processes that truly defines Japanese hospitality.

Q5 : What wisdom, advice or tips can you give to people living and working in Japan?

Take more risks and defy the conventional wisdom that some initiatives cannot be achieved in Japan! Japan is an innovative and forward-looking country and younger generations are becoming more open to change and thinking differently about traditional work culture. I am privileged to work in Japan and anyone that has an opportunity to work in this great country should not hesitate to come here.

Last updated: Oct 2, 2018