As of 7/16 there are 156 comments on his blog that announces the new MVCI points program. Almost all of them are negative. They have been made since the day of the announcement (6/20). Many are asking him for ehlp and are wondering if he is aware of the great number of very unhappy customers the new program has created.
If this is Mr. Marriott's way of connecting in a 2-way conversation with loyal customers, why has he still not responded?
Welcome back and thanks for posting. If I recall correctly, you own several weeks in Aruba. Several of us have been monitoring Marriott on the Move, the sharp tones of discord, deep undercurrents of disappointment and vitriol. What's so surprising is the level of betrayal and animosity that so many once loyal, trusting owners feel. Many like us have multiple weeks of Marriott timeshare and the lack of communications, change management and response seems to be creating a Perfect Storm.
One poster referred to MVC's Destination Points program as 22. Send a private message with your e-mail for a copy.
While I am sure there are many responses to Bill's blog that were removed, what fascinates me is that MOTM has chosen to allow the myriad of deservedly harsh criticism filter through, albeit a few days delayed. Even more interesting is that there have been no responses by Marriott to the 150+ posts.
I just find that a curious approach to PR.
Thanks for the PDF offer, TJC. I've taken the time to read every one and added mine.
It would sure be nice if Mr Marriott replied. It seem ingenuous for him to not use this. After all Marriott's site promotes this as a way to "interact" with him. Interacting takes at least 2 parties.
I have also been actively following the postings regarding this program on TUG. Comments are overwhelmingly negative, and TUG member appear to know more about the program than MVC employees. Those who plan to join the program are doing it to 'cut their losses', not because the program is appealing to them. I am very disappointed that Marriott has not responded to complaints on this forum, nor are they providing any feedback on TUG.
Do they think they can bury their head in the sand and this problem will go away. This indicates to me that Bill Marriott is no longer involved in the business, and career minded executives are running the show. I would not be surprised to learn that an outside consultant had been hired to develop the new program.
"This indicates to me that Bill Marriott is no longer involved in the business"
Bill Marriott just celebrated his 55th wedding anniversary and shared several details about the experience on his blog. Since Bill Marriott" is the family patriarch, it is my expectation that Mr Marriott is very much involved in the business.
Marriott on the Move stipulates, "This blog allows us to hear from you and build on the community that we've nurtured since 1927. We are delighted you have decided to visit us, and we will do our best to make it a valuable experience for you."
Owner feedback is making it very clear that a challenging situation has developed within Marriott Vacation Club. In very stark contrast, just yesterday, The Washington Post published an extremely favorable review about Marriott International's 2nd quarter financial performance.*
Once the 2nd Qtr attaboys and shoulder pats are delivered, we can expect that management will make certain that MVCI is subject to scrutiny. Given the scale of Marriott International and the chain of command, covering up what is so clearly exposed at Marriott on the Move, Timeshare Users Group and elsewhere will not be in corporation's best interests.
Striking an analogy, it wasn't too long ago that betrayal, distrust and dishonesty had a major impact in public accounting. Do you remember when the Big 5 became the Big 4 and Andersen - under court order - dissolved the corporation? We witnessed unexpected events in the banking industry just 2 years ago. Maybe we will see a new chapter unfold in hospitality? This question compels another, Is A Perfect Storm Brewing @ Marriott?
Update 7/20/10: The most recent batch of MVC owner comments posted to Bill Marriott's blog, Marriott on the Move further suggest, IMO, that he is very much involved in the business. To his credit, Mr. Marriott has not censored posts with feedback that clearly reflects the disapproval of hundreds of Marriott Vacation Club owners. Along the 'blunder' theme, here's an excerpt from an owner comment posted, 7/16/2010:
"In the sad and despicable tradition of the MOUNTAIN MEADOWS MASSACRE**, the DESTINATIONS PROGRAM, in my opinion, brings shame and disgrace to you and your Corporation.
I have received my mailed enrollment kit materials and, quite frankly, they are totally unresponsive to any concern I (and perhaps others) may have with the new program. They are a Marketing Abomination of wishy-washy information and half (if that) informations. They are more noteworthy in what they do not say as opposed to what they should divulge - how can you not minimally include a list of the current resorts included in the program and what it will cost with points or otherwise to stay at any one for whatever various views or seasons exist for that place! Unfortunately, resort to any MVCI agent to clarify matters has been futile - they really do not fully understand the Program either!
With all due respect, Marketing has failed to adequately do its research before foisting this program upon us and the many complaints and questions listed on this site appear to give credence to that. In the process, they have alienated many of your loyal customers to the extent that you should seriously consider whether those responsible merit continued association with the firm and whether the program should continue as it is.
As with MOUNTAIN MEADOWS, it is, in my opinion, more likely than not, that history will record the CURRENT INTRODUCTION of your DESTINATIONS PROGRAM as one of the classical marketing blunders and as one of the less favorable periods of your Company. NOTHING less than the integrity of your Company is at stake here and you should do everything in your power to maintain and sustain what has taken your family and you years to build up - it is at the essence and heart of the hospitality industry and your Company.
There is little doubt in my opinion and in my mind but that your father would be ashamed of what is going on and would take great exception at the legacy and lesson that you are passing on and the image you are projecting by virtue of the DESTINATIONS PROGRAM (as nice a concept as it might be, it has not been fully thought out or properly unveiled - leaving many people with the many questions and complaints you are receiving). I fully expect to see your father frowning the next time I look at the painting of you and him that hangs in most of your facilities." (Excerpt from Owner message, posted Marriott on the Move, 7/16/2010 at 07:29 AM)
** The owner's comments about the "Mountain Meadows Massacre" strikes a parallel to a historical event that the faithful in the faith tradition of the Mormons believe to be a shameful disgrace in their heritage. See Mountain Meadows Massacre at Wikipedia
Regards TUG, is anyone connecting-the-dots between the Florida legislation, HB 61* passed last July and the Destination Points?
House Bill 61 was sponsored by the American Resort Development Association aka ARDA.
Under this legislation, timeshare companies have a financial incentive to develop and sell timeshare and then convert it to rental inventory. I recall you stating that everyday check-in would turn the clubhouse into a hotel lobby. Hindsight is always 20-20.
The more one overlays Destination Points with HB 61, the new product looks, smells and acts like a glorified rental program. Any insights worth sharing from TUG? Anybody over there seeing this connection? Is it any coincidence that Florida is the timeshare capital of the world?
If transient rental of timeshare is not subject to tax in Florida, then Interval International, Disney and Marriott Vacation Club who are headquartered there, get 100% of the revenue on timeshare rental!