Creating Powerful Connections with Customers - Phil Cordell

About This Episode

Phil Cordell, Global Head of New Brand Development at Hilton, shares the way the brand is differentiating itself in a tough competitive marketplace through the power of customer connections while also making an awesome cookie that connects two favorite flavors.

While creating chocolate peanut butter cookies, Phil dishes about the impact that enabling employees to act like themselves has on creating genuine customer reactions. These small things make lasting impressions that customers remember about their experience with Hilton brands. He also serves up the powerful way that Hilton's franchise model allows each property to retain its unique personality while staying true to the brand.

About Phil Cordell

Phil Cordell is one of the nation’s leading hospitality-industry experts.

After nearly 35 years of launching some of the world’s most iconic hospitality brands for Hilton — the internationally recognized, preeminent hospitality company — Cordell was promoted in 2018 to Global Head of New Brand Development.. In this role, he uses his extensive industry knowledge and deep strengths as an innovator and pioneer to successfully launch new brands for the company.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

Soft and fudgy chocolate peanut butter cookies, with thick ribbons of peanut butter.


  • 1 cup of white, oat, or spelt flour
  • 6 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup vegetable or melted coconut oil
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 bag of chocolate chips
  • 10 to 15 half-teaspoons of peanut butter


For easier handling, freeze about 10 to 15 half-teaspoons of peanut butter before beginning. Preheat oven to 325° F. In a large bowl, stir together the first 5 ingredients. Add remaining ingredients except peanut butter. Stir to form a batter. Make a log out of the dough on a sheet of plastic wrap, then completely wrap and refrigerate dough until firm enough to slice and form balls. Smush a frozen ball of peanut butter into the center of each cookie and re-roll.

Bake 10 minutes – they should look underdone when you take them out of the oven. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before handling, during which time they will firm up. If the cookies haven’t flattened, feel free to press down gently with a spoon. Store leftovers in a covered container for up to three days.

Peanut Butter Cup Martini


  • 1 1/2 ounces chocolate vodka
  • 1 ounces crème peanut rum
  • 3/4 ounce chocolate liquor
  • 1/2 ounce cream
  • 1 peanut butter cup
  • Chocolate syrup


Drizzle chocolate syrup along the inside of a chilled martini glass and place the glass in the refrigerator.

Add the remaining ingredients to a shaker and fill with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into the prepared glass. Garnish with a peanut butter cup.

The Pot Stirrer

A cooking show with business leaders – what? Yes! One part talk show, one part business show, The Pot Stirrer brings together leaders from the world’s most disruptive companies to find out the “secret sauce” behind their success. Leaders dish on the key ingredients of their growing companies, how they create change, how they motivate and inspire their people, and how they win the hearts and minds of their customers. And, they share their favorite recipes.

About the Pot Stirrer