God and gay marriage: What Chick-fil-A could learn from Marriott

Published: Sunday, July 29 2012 12:00 a.m. MDT

Our Take: Business Week offers an interesting comparison between Chick-fil-A's Dan Cathy and Marriott Corp's Bill Marriott on how religious beliefs influence business policy and communication:

A few months ago, I had an interesting conversation with Bill Marriott. As a prominent Mormon-controlled venture, his hotel company was an obvious target in 2008, when the church vigorously supported California’s now-overturned ban on gay marriage. The Marriott International (MAR) chairman has never tried to hide his deep faith, often referring to God in his writing and interviews.

In Marriott’s personal life, marriage is something reserved for a man and a woman. But he has long been reluctant to impose that view on the company his father founded. Not only could that crimp the company’s $12 billion in sales, it might demoralize employees working in more than 3,700 Marriott properties worldwide. With Mitt Romney’s presidential run and same-sex marriage in the headlines, we spoke about his stance as Mormon leaders were being held up for scrutiny again.

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