2008 – 2009

I sell hotels for a living, and I left the public company I was working for in May of 2007 to come home and start over. Starting over is not for the faint of heart. It looks good, smells good, and feels good, but know a few things before you do it. It will cost several times what you think it will cost, it will take several times longer than you think it will take, and it will be several times harder than you think it will be.

We started Hotel AG in 2007 after I left the public company. We had our plan and it was a good one. What we didn’t plan on was the financial meltdown in late 2008 and 2009. Ha. We got Hotel AG going, closed our first portfolio of hotels, had a double handful of listings, and it was looking like it would work. Then, September 2008 happened. Lehman Brothers, Wachovia, and Bear Stearns all went away, and the Dow dropped by a huge number. Homes began to be foreclosed, jobs were lost, etc. Bankruptcy was everywhere.

Well, here we were as new company just getting started and the recession happened. From September 2008 through all of 2009, I think we closed 6 hotel transactions and lost 400k in operating loss in the process. We were able to keep our staff, and I personally funded the company’s losses until we recovered.

Let me tell you, when I was writing checks every month to keep the company afloat, it was challenging every bit of faith, trust, and boldness I had within me. That said, I had a lot of families depending on us to make it financially, and I really didn’t feel as though I had a choice but to work hard enough to make sure the decision I made was the right one. Let me say that again. I had to work hard enough to make sure the decision I made was the right one. Sometimes we have to work to make sure the decision we already made is the right one. If you walk away from adversity every time it shows up, you will never stick with anything long enough to succeed. This goes for marriages, debt, family, work, church, friends and just about everything in life. You need to decide at the beginning what you are fighting for, and then go fight for it.

So, when adversity shows up, go get by yourself and decide if it’s worth fighting for. If it is, then do whatever it takes.  KT

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