Bridging the Industry with Digna M. Kolar

Advisory Services answers recent client questions about hotel revenue management

Digna M. Kolar, IDeaS senior advisor, ponders what it means to be a good revenue manager today…and tomorrow.  Click to Tweet | IDeaS Twitter

What makes a good revenue manager today?

To try to answer that, first I must think about how to define revenue management. Also, how has it changed, and how will it continue to change? Because the qualities that make someone a good revenue manager today may not be good enough tomorrow.

You can find quite a few definitions of revenue management, but my best friend Wikipedia says, “Revenue management is the application of disciplined analytics that predict consumer behavior at the micro-market level and optimize product availability and price to maximize revenue growth.”

Maybe a bit generic, but it fits the way most industries utilize revenue management today; however, as the environment of those industries changes rapidly, many revenue managers are struggling to keep up.

If you think about the different modern consumer behaviors we see, thanks to technology and other factors, we are faced with way more trends than ever before impacting how a person makes a decision, making it harder for an organization to maximize revenue growth and remain competitive.

So, going back to what makes a good revenue manager today, and assuming this person has access to the latest revenue management technology, she or he should be a strong leader with a clear, innovative vision able to see beyond data and trends. They should also be highly adaptable.

A good revenue manager must lead their organization to sell to the “right” customer, not only of today, but also of tomorrow. They need to anticipate what products this customer will want to buy now, and in the future, and ensure they are offered not only at the right time, but also in the right manner and at the right price.

But how does a revenue manager determine what is “right,” both for today and tomorrow? A proactive approach to all the synergies impacting their environment, directly and indirectly, is critical. Being aware of all the factors impacting how their current customers make a decision will help determine how best to influence them.

I wish I could tell you exactly how the roles and responsibilities of the revenue manager of tomorrow will be different. It’s possible we will no longer even call these people “revenue managers.” We tend to associate a job title with a specific, unchanging description, but as technology continues to alter the world we live in, people have to accept that our job duties must evolve as well to support this new technology and adapt to a our new environment, whatever that may be.


Hey, don’t leave now—the fun is just beginning. Here are more industry insights making the rounds this week:

Digna Martinez Kolar

Senior Advisor at IDeaS Revenue Solutions

Working intimately with hotels all over the world, Digna Martinez boasts a strong global background in hotel operations, revenue management, consulting and strategic pricing. As the senior advisor at IDeaS Revenue Solutions, Digna leads advisory services initiatives for the Americas region, assisting hospitality companies of all sizes to build and enhance their total revenue performance and price optimization capabilities.

Prior to joining the IDeaS global team, Digna spent 11 years in leadership roles at InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG). Her roles with IHG previously included the regional head of revenue management for Japan, Korea, the Middle East & Africa, as well as the global pricing implementation & business integration manager.

Holding deep expertise in the deployment and structuring of pricing and revenue management processes, Digna helps clients build sustainable revenue management cultures in multi-cultural and diverse organizational environments.

Digna holds an MBA in Hospitality Management IMHI, a joint program of Cornell University and ESSEC. She currently lives in sunny California with her husband

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