Category Archives: Career


Babe Ruth said, “you just can’t beat the person who never gives up.”

I have always been drawn to movies that are based on true stories like, Rudy, Invincible, Miracle, Secretariat, etc. There is something about an underdog winning that I have always enjoyed. In every one of those movies, they all have one thing in common. An actor that portrays a real person that just wouldn’t give up.

The apostle Paul was much like that in real life. He was persecuted and beaten for the gospel’s sake, but he never gave up. One such story is the the book of Acts and took place in the town of Lystra. A mob of religious people dragged Paul outside the town walls and stoned him until they were sure he was dead and then left him there. Later Paul got up and brushed off his clothes and went right back to the town center and started preaching again. He just wouldn’t give up.

There are times and relationships that you have no choice than to give up on. We all know situations like that. What I guess I am talking about is the person that gives up quickly. When you make a habit of giving up easy, the problem is it becomes a habit that can affect your life for many years. I supposed the advice is to give your best and don’t leave anything on the table. Try as hard as you can. I believe when you do that, you can rest easy knowing you did everything you could. KT

Hunter / Miner

Over the years there have been many people that have tried the hotel brokerage business and only a small percentage have made it a career. The reason is simple, as with most any business and certainly the hotel business, you have to want it. There is no causal show up and lollygag through the day. When you think of every hotel broker that has made it in our business, that are all Hunters and Miners.

When think of a hunter, they wear all kind of preparation for the hunt including but not limited to a flashlight or headlamp to find their way. It’s the same for a miner. They are all geared up and have a headlamp to show the way. Sure, the weapons of their trade are important but its interesting that the most important equipment is the old fashion flashlight. Without that, there would be no mining and very little hunting.

In our business I have had maybe a handful of situations where an owner calls me and says upfront, I want to hire you to sell my hotel. It doesn’t work that way. Most of the time its like following the breadcrumbs. The brokers that have made it in our business find that first breadcrumb and then turn on their flashlight and dig out the business. Most brokers think they are above having to dig deep for a deal and that is why they last for a few years and then go on to an easier job somewhere.

Isn’t it kind of that way in many areas of our lives? Marriage, business, exercise, financial, relationships etc. You have to want it. Apathy (lack of interest) is the main reason that our efforts many times fail. If you are in sales, management, construction, office work or any other type of business, the one thing that clients and employers want to see the most when they talk to you, is the beam from your flashlight. It is right there in the eyes of the people that want it. KT

Remember who you’re talking to

How many times have you heard someone speaking to a group or gathering and seemingly forgot who they were talking to? It’s like telling people who already have a job, how to apply for a job. There is a lot of other social topics I could use but the point is, really look at and understand who you are talking to.

Years ago, we were selling a hotel to a very well known and respected publicly traded hotel REIT. The owners were two family members and were feeling their oats thinking they were about to make the deal of a lifetime. I remember the introductory conference call like it was yesterday. Ha. While the sellers only had this one hotel, the public REIT had bought or sold 500+ hotels. To say they knew what they were doing is an understatement. So, we are about five minutes into the get-to-know-you stage of the call, when a very minor issue arose. One of the sellers (a little full of himself) said to the buyer (REIT) very seriously, “have you guys ever bought a hotel before?” The REIT quietly said yes and thanked the seller for their time and just never called back. The sellers forgot who they were talking to and tried to show how smart they were.

I learned on that call 14 years ago to never ever lose your cool because once you do, very seldom can you take it back. I once taught a young couples Sunday school class at church for a good five years. They were all young couple trying to figure out life and I remember tailoring my lessons to things that would interest them and life lessons that were important to them.

I love watching old NCIS shows and the main character is Jethro Leroy Gibbs. He still uses a flip phone and is old school in every way. His staff will try to explain some technical computer situation and every time he holds up his hand and says, “in English!” Ha.

Before you get on a conference call or speak to a group it is usually a good thing to really remember who you are talking to and use terms and use subjects that will matter to them. KT

First Listing

I have been mentoring this young want-to-be hotel broker for the last 18 months. He hasn’t earned one dime or been hired one time. I think he needs a better teacher. Ha

He reads the news and hears about this big deal or that big deal and he wants so badly to skip past the average deals and only focus on the big deals. Clearly this is the recipe for failure, but he hasn’t come to the point of understanding it. He has heard it from me multiple times, but it hasn’t gotten down inside of him yet. He is educated, talented, engaging, young, fancy suits, gelled hair, pointed shoes, the walk, the talk etc. You know the type. The problem is he doesn’t have any money because he hasn’t fully listened to me yet.

This week we were talking, and I ask him the following four questions. How long have you been trying to be a hotel broker? Answer- 18 months. How many hotels have you listed? Answer – none. How many hotels have you valued?  Slow,,,,,, answer – none. How much money have you earned? Answer – none. I then ask him if he was really to listen to me. He said yes.

I then proceeded to teach him course 101 of hotel brokerage. I told him to push everything he has been trying to do aside and purely focus on one single objective. Go get one listing. Don’t try to get 20, go get the first one. Then I told him when you are exclusively hired and you market that one hotel correctly, you meet 50-100 buyers. From that one listing you will get you 2 more listings and those 2 gets you 5 and those 5 gets you 10 etc. That’s how you build a career in our business. I have pounded on this young man for 18 months and finally this week he heard me. He had to try it his way first before he was ready to listen.

Isn’t it that way in a lot of areas of our lives? Financially, relationally, physically, socially etc. You must start somewhere and you (most times) can’t skip to the good stuff. If you are a runner, you don’t go out and just run a marathon. You must pay the price and start with something that is achievable, like run one mile. If you are painting your house, you don’t just grab a brush and start painting. There is a lot of prep work that must first happen. It’s the same with our children, jobs, spouses and even your dog. A dog must get to know you a little before he puts his full trust in you. Its like wanting to read a book so you skip to the end first. No, you must grind through the first 300 pages before you get rewarded with the surprise ending. So, in life don’t skip the necessary steps (building blocks) because they are the foundation you need. KT

Seek respect, not attention. It lasts longer

Respect lasts for a long time. Attention lasts about a minute.

There is no lack of people in the news that seek only one thing, attention. They don’t understand that every time you do something that attracts attention makes it more difficult to get respect. Being respected is much more valuable than attention.

I am working this deal that has been difficult and last week we had a zoom call with the principals. As these things often happen, it started off with a little ego getting in the way but after 30 minutes, I watched as the momentum changed and was replaced with respect for the other party. More times than not this step is often needed in any merger, sale, JV, or transaction and its not taught in any real estate school or any management courses. It is instinct and knowing the nature of people.

Far too often we see and hear from someone who has an active social media account and all they want is a sound bite and some short-term attention. When you get attention that is all you get. Short term gratification.

The bible tells us to be wise and redeem the time we have. There has never been a better piece of advice. I suspect that at your funeral, you will not be remembered for the moments of attention, rather your history of respect. That is what you will be remembered for. Respect takes much longer to achieve but it lasts oh so much longer and flows through your generations to come. There couldn’t be a better lesson to teach (and show) our children and grandchildren than to seek respect. Its not the kid that always gets mad on the playground rather, it is the soft spoken, levelheaded, mature kid that goes on to do great things in life. KT