Published March 7, 2024

In Episode 2 of the Chairlift Chat Series, Todd Bennett, President and COO of Deer Valley, discusses with Rob Sogard, the Vice President of Skier Services, his extensive career from teaching skiing in high school to his role with the Professional Ski Instructors of America. They explore Deer Valley's Skier Services, which include ski school, rentals, and childcare, supported by nearly 900 staff members. Highlights of the conversation include the resort’s commitment to training excellence and the expansion of new terrain, emphasizing the collaborative culture at Deer Valley that makes it an outstanding place for both guests and industry professionals.

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Deer Valley's Skier Services is a robust ecosystem designed to enhance guest experiences on the mountain. This service trifecta includes ski school, rentals (encompassing skis and basket check), and childcare through the Deer Valley Academy. Supporting these frontline services are approximately 900 dedicated staff across a dozen areas, including call centers, reservations, sales, and on-ground operations. This wide-reaching support ensures that every guest interaction is smooth, enriching, and tailored to individual needs.

Rob's decades-long journey in the ski industry, highlighted by a significant tenure with the Professional Ski Instructors of America, has equipped him with a unique perspective on the integral role of ski instruction in enhancing resort experiences. His narrative underscores a deep-seated passion for ski teaching and an understanding of its profound impact on a guest's resort experience, reflecting Deer Valley’s commitment to top-tier ski education.

Deer Valley prides itself on an exceptional training regimen for its ski instructors, who are often self-described as 'training junkies'. New hires undergo a comprehensive, week-long training program that not only hones their skiing skills but also improves their instructional techniques. This program is meticulously designed to ensure that every instructor can offer personalized and effective lessons, catering to a diverse clientele ranging from children to adults across all skill levels.

The recent expansion of new terrain at Deer Valley has been met with excitement and approval from both staff and guests. This development not only broadens the scope of skiing opportunities but also enhances the learning environment for beginners and intermediates alike. By carefully designing these new areas, Deer Valley continues to facilitate optimal learning conditions, ensuring that guests of all ages and abilities have memorable and enriching experiences on the slopes.

Rob emphasizes the collaborative spirit that permeates Deer Valley, noting the seamless integration across various departments—including food and beverage, lift operations, ski patrol, and guest services. This synergy is pivotal in creating an environment where staff are empowered and guest service is paramount, illustrating the resort’s commitment to excellence in every facet of its operations.

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Continue Exploring the Chairlift Chat Series:

Ep 1: Mountain Operations
Ep 2: Skier Services
Ep 3: Food & Beverage
Ep 4: Human Resources