The Dark Side or is it?

“You will come to a place where the streets are not marked.
Some windows are lighted. but mostly they’re darked.
But mostly they’re darked.
A place you could sprain both your elbow and chin!
Do you dare to stay out? Do you dare to go in?
How much can you lose? How much can you win?”
Dr. Seuss, Oh, The Places You’ll Go!

Still in Bloomington IN, but new assignment and new job title. A few weeks ago, I was asked to switch over from the Sales side of Task Force Management (covering and recruiting for Sales positions) to the Operations side of Task Force Management (covering for General Manager positions) or what some have said is the Dark Side. This was not a shock, in the interview process we had discussed how I enjoyed both “sides” of Hotel Management and would be willing to help on both. There was still some fear on my end, and I likely told several people how long it had been since I was a General Manager, and I was never one who traveled from place to place. I explained in detail that while I could learn the paperwork again, the accounting and the human resource side, that I would need to adjust my brain. Easier said than done, for those who know me best. (here’s your shout-out, Bill) While I love working with employees and guests, I find my challenges are finding the right mix of sympathy and firmness in handling the day to day, never ending lists of things to do. Sales offices shut down at a certain point in the day, Operations never does. The last time I was a General Manager, I worked a lot, hired a lot, trained a lot and yes, fired a lot. I took the responsibility for everything that happened, and had a hard time dividing work from home. I am older now (ugh) and hopefully wiser. I will focus more on empowering others than on thinking I need to do everything, be everything to everyone.

I am starting out pretty well, have been accepting that I don’t know everything – and I need to reach out to my colleagues to ask questions and be open to making mistakes. And ideally the different hotels I work with – will appreciate my efforts while I am there but adjust to their new long term General Manager once found. Feels right that my first hotel for my first “new role” assignment is in Bloomington IN – and keeps my family close to mind.

The quote from my favorite Dr. Seuss book is for one of my nieces, Annmarie. I contributed a note to her Time Capsule that she will open her senior year of high school. I thought about how at her age, I had no idea what I would be doing as an adult and how many paths were taken and still will be taken. And how fear of what might happen, can keep you from going into the dark or unknown places. But if you don’t move in any direction, your fear keeps you in the same place. I, for one, want to move. To change. To learn. Make mistakes and learn from them. Take some risks and succeed from them. Because the scariest thing is not doing anything at all.

Wow. That got deep. how about something lighter?

Travel tips for Bloomington IN? There is nothing like walking around downtown Btown on a nice day, lots of local businesses to visit. Live music – go to the Bluebird or Players Pub. Unique watering hole – House Bar. Yep, it is a bar in a house. Irish Lion for great pub atmosphere and food. Delivery to your hotel room – nothing like Mother Bear’s Pizza and yes, they will deliver cold beer too. Business lunches or dinners – Malibu Grill. Everyday awesome lunch – Bub’s or Scholar’s Inn. Special mention for the sweet potato fries at Bub’s – they serve with marshmallow cream – enough said. Not sure how long I will be here but chances are – I will continue to eat, drink, think and share my thoughts.



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