2020 Connect Corporate 15 Over 50: Gary R. Hernbroth

Gary R. Hernbroth is the chief motivational officer at Training for Winners. He is based in Danville, California.

2020 Connect Corporate 15 Over 50: Gary R. Hernbroth

Gary R. Hernbroth describes himself as creative, loyal and entrepreneurialLearn more about him.

What I do: As a professional speaker, trainer and business coach, I am driven to help others find that extra gear. I work very hard to build customized presentations and programs that will inspire and enable teams, organizations and individuals at all levels to become more successful. A client referred to me as his organization’s “strength and conditioning coach,” and I love that because it accurately describes my role. Essentially, I’m here to help people kick up their games.  

How I got here: After graduating from The School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University, I completed my management training at the Westin St. Francis, learning the hotel business from the ground up. I spent 17 years in luxury hotels for Westin, Fairmont and Park Lane Hotels International in sales and marketing leadership roles. In 1995, I founded Training for Winners, parlaying my hospitality and meetings experience into a speaking, training and coaching career with a commitment to help others succeed.

Greatest career accomplishment: On the hotel side, from pre-opening through its formative years, I helped put a brand new, unknown 1,006-room luxury hotel in San Francisco on the meetings industry map as a serious player against more established brands. Leading the sales department, my team and I built a formidable and sustainable book of business and market share from absolutely nothing. The fact that I walked into that job 12 months before the hotel’s opening without a single existing sales file made it all that much sweeter. As an entrepreneur, I’m very proud of having founded my own enterprise and still making it go 25 years later, despite all of the challenges of running one’s own business and the many economic ups and downs during that time. 

Impressive stats: It’s hard to sum up career accomplishments in terms of stats, as there have been many different metrics over the years. However, here’s one I am proud of from my years in sales and marketing leadership for the Parc 55 Hotel: our team’s 91% sales success rate. I’m very proud of the booking stats that we as an independent luxury hotel consistently accomplished in a very competitive city filled with revered nationally-branded hotels. We made our booking goals in 10 of the 11 years I was there. The exception was the Earthquake World Series year of 1989. Mother Nature knocked us out of a lot of business that fall.

What I am working on now: In addition to transitioning my live presentation material into virtual deliveries given the times we are in, I am very excited about the upcoming publication of my first book, “Twisting the Familiar.” It’s a phrase I coined in front of my audience during a sales training workshop for a client a few years ago. I didn’t want to use the trite saying “think outside the box,” so while searching for the right words to say, this phrase just popped into my head. My books will include entertaining and enlightening stories in topics such as sales, service, entrepreneurship, motivation, branding and leadership. My goal is to provide readers the “stuff” to build their own playbook for success. My manuscript is being edited and is projected for a 2021 release.

What I do outside of work: I like to spend time with family and friends, as nothing beats making new memories together. My hobbies and interests include playing golf, bocce, biking, studying American history, sports and traveling. I make a return trip to MSU each year as a member of the Alumni Board of Directors for The School of Hospitality Business. As such, I help to mentor students, speak to classes, conduct mock interviews and review resumes in order to help the next wave of professionals prepare for their careers beyond graduation.

Connect with Hernbroth on LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram.