Are You an Ostrich or a Llama?” by Larry Mogelonsky Hits the Shelves

Are You an Ostrich or a Llama? Essays in Hospitality Marketing and Management.
By Larry Mogelonsky


Written by one of the world's most published authors in the field of hospitality, this 396-page book represents a radical departure from traditional industry. Targeted at hotel management, this book serves as a platform for discussion on current issues relating to the performance of hotels and resorts. Through a combination of real life examples and an examination of current challenges facing the hotel industry, the book comprises one hundred and twenty individual segments each dedicated to a single thought or concept. These standalone articles are then combined into ten chapters, each dedicated to a specific topic.

The book has been written so that hoteliers of any level, from apprentice to seasoned general manager, will be able to gain value from the contents. While the bulk of articles deal with marketing aspects, many of the items relate to core operational issues. A common emphasis throughout is the paramount importance of quality guest service. For those outside the hotel industry but who have careers involving customer service, the practical hints provided in this text serve as excellent training pointers.

So, why the title? Ostriches are classically known as avoiding conflict by putting their head in the sand. While probably not true, the stigma remains, and those who are considered an ostrich, are living in the past, with their head's in the sand. Llamas, on the other hand, are considered utilitarian, hardworking and reliable. They are very friendly too! This is what you want to strive for. By reading this book, and digesting the contents, the hope is to move the reader from being an 'ostrich' to  a 'llama.'

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Reviews of Are You an Ostrich or a Llama

“The most important element of the hotel experience is the interaction between guest and employee.  Larry’s book offers a comprehensive review of how to achieve success as a hotel manager in a changing world, while maintaining an all-important focus on customer service.  “Are you an Ostrich or a Llama?” will help managers navigate the latest technologies while providing the utmost in hospitality.”

– Isadore Sharp, Chairman, Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts


“Leave it to Larry Mogelonsky, one of the industry's most prolific visionaries, to write a book that examines every minute detail of how hospitality should be run – LIKE CLOCKWORK. His unique personal experiences combined with his professionalism give readers a hands-on approach to the issues affecting today's hotelier.  This book should be a permanent addition to the library of every hotel operator and management team.”

– Benedict Cummins, Publisher,


“If you are looking for a self-gloating book by some hotel executive, telling you how wonderful they conduct business, this book is not for you. With his precise, often humorous and enjoyable writing style, Larry’s book is a breath of fresh air, in an industry that was able somehow to portray itself as sophisticated and cutting edge and that is instead paying the price for a decade of self-inflicted wounds. Through a series of poignant articles, Larry looks at the hospitality world with an inquisitive eye, paying attention to the smallest of details and trends as well as questioning the industry to its core and often-misleading beliefs.  A must read for any hotel executive.”

– Renato Alesiani, President and COO, Wave Crest Hotels & Resorts


“As a long time fan, I always look forward to Larry Mogelonsky’s business savvy articles and insights on hospitality marketing, which I excitedly share with the managers of the Library Hotel Collection. Larry’s thought process is so logical and perceptive, readers will find themselves saying. “Yes! How true!” but more importantly, “I am going to do that, too!” because it is thick with practical ideas on how to make your business prosper. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to elevate the business acumen of their company and find a wealth of opportunities to please customers and maximize profitability.”

Adele Gutman, Vice President of Marketing, Library Collection  Hotels


“A wonderful read. Insightful, intelligent and fun to read and identify with.”

Janis Clapoff, Managing Director (former), Ojai Valley Inn & Spa


“Larry is one of those rare individuals that will provide you with an outsider's perspective from an insider's point of view. You may not agree with everything Larry has to say, but I'm willing to bet that most of it will ring true when you take the time to think about it.”

Chuck Kelley, Principal, G7 Hospitality Group Inc.


“Larry takes what we hoteliers often think is difficult and simplifies it in a way that makes perfect sense.  A must read for hoteliers to understand that excellent guest service leads to greater profitability.”

– Gordon Carncross, Principal, G7 Hospitality Group Inc.


“Larry nails some of the critical issues facing hoteliers today and gives them a 'velvet hammer' approach to solutions. Throughout the book, I couldn't help but see immediate parallels with many of the property situations encountered on a day-to-day basis. A great read.”

– Marshall Calder, President-Americas, Great Hotels of the World


“The complexities of hotel operations and marketing are rarely found in a single book. Yet, Larry is able to intertwine these two core elements of hospitality management in a single edition, and present these in an easy-to-read approach. The use of real live experiences and interviews with leaders in the field brings these topics to life, and prompts further debate amongst practitioners. Read it, then reflect upon how these examples can enhance your operations.”

– Kuno W. Fasel, Chief Operating Officer, COMO Hotels & Resorts


“From the first article to the end, Larry provides a wealth of information for hotel managers to wrestle with, to question their strategies and operational plans. There is learning in every chapter.”

– Fred Grapstein, President, New York's Hotel Pennsylvania


“You can run but you can't hide from the truths in this book:  Wishy-washy it's not.  Hopefully, you'll read these words of advice carefully and more than once — until you can truly see the ostrich in the mirror.  This is solid advice, but offered with great humor.  I found myself saying “Yes!” and chuckling at the same time.  Good stuff!”

– William J. Callnin, Chairman & Managing Director, Cayuga Hospitality Advisors

PRAre You an Ostrich or a Llama?” by Larry Mogelonsky Hits the Shelves