Nurture Your Leadership Intuition

Guest post by Martha Alderson:
Leaders often rely on surveys, empirical data, conscious reasoning, concrete evidence, facts, logic, and scientific research before making decisions or changing the current course of action. We turn to experts for insight as we attempt to understand and solve a complex problem. We lean into tried-and-true strategies hoping to replicate past successes. However, life today moves at warp speed. What worked previously, doesn’t apply in today’s world. We’re asked to innovate and create new solutions instantaneously.
Rather than turn to others for answers, you have within you something more powerful and honest and reliable and immediate than any outside expert or long-standing model of operation. What you possess serves you better and makes you a unique and trusted leader. That something is your inner voice, otherwise known as your intuition and innate wisdom.
Trusting Your Inner Voice
When you’re asked to react on the fly, fix what’s not working, and come up with creative solutions, you don’t have the luxury of time to research. Instead, listen to and rely on your inner self for immediate hits of insight, knowing, and understanding. You make a snap judgment of the situation, the person, or the problem. This, then, becomes a starting place to form solid decisions as you invite in ideas and possibilities to plot a plan and determine a course of action.
If, however, you doubt your instinct and what you’re intuiting, or disrespect the inner guidance you’re being offered, believing your inner feelings are an illusion and can’t be proven, are immaterial, a weakness or insignificant, you’re negating your greatest strength. Your inner voice offers you the true nature of reality beyond the physical. Your sixth sense nurtures your confidence and grows your faith in yourself to inspire others.
Rely on Your Intuition
Your intuition is the non-physical and deepest part of you. It asks that you demand no proof and no evidence of its truth, but to simply trust when you pick up on subtle cues from those you’re leading, when you sense you’re headed in the wrong direction, when you feel an inner clarity. Your inner voice is that which you know to be true even when, especially when, everyone and everything else say differently. When you rely on your inner messages, you rarely make a wrong move. A hunch, a feeling, your gut reaction often lead you to answers you never could have come up with through your intellect alone.
We often have difficulty hearing our innate wisdom beneath the clamor of our learned responses and conventional wisdom. It takes courage to have faith in your intuition and to stick to your decisions when what you’re proposing goes against all available evidence to the contrary. To stand in your truth is daring and audacious, and often threatens your ego with fears of being wrong or laughed at when you know you know but have no idea why or how you came to be so certain, and are unable to explain beyond the simple statement—I just know.
As you learn to trust and are guided by your intuition, you lead by example, which in turn encourages those you lead to begin trusting their inner voice, too.

MARTHA ALDERSON, MA is the author of the best-selling The Plot Whisperer. She writes novels for readers, plot books for writers, and most recently Boundless Creativity: A Spiritual Workbook for Overcoming Self-Doubt, Emotional Traps, and Other Creative Blocks for anyone looking to enrich their lives with more creativity and inspiration. Her other books are Writing Blockbuster Plots and Writing Deep Scenes, The Plot Whisperer Workbook, The Plot Whisperer Book of Writing Prompts, as well as several ebooks. Look for her latest novel Parallel Lives: A Love Story coming out summer 2020. She lives and writes in Santa Cruz. Learn more about Alderson on her website, and connect with her on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Youtube.

Create Eagles – Not Ducks When it Comes to Policies

Guest post from S. Chris Edmonds:
Most stupid policies don’t start out that way. They are intended to “protect & serve” but can evolve into something not good.
There’s a story by Wayne Dyer about eagles and ducks. In organizations, ducks are those employees who are bogged down in the stupid policies, i.e. rules that no longer serve. They are helpless to change things that don’t work. Ducks quack, “That’s not my job,” and “I’m sorry, that’s our policy,” and “My computer won’t let me remove that charge from your account,” etc.
Eagles soar above the crowd, doing great things for customers and the company. They don’t get mired in policies that don’t work; they maneuver around stupid policies to serve the customer and the company fairly.
Years ago I discovered something about organizations and policy creation.
The client was a municipal government – city, not county or state. I was teaching a leadership program and participants were very pleased with the models, tools, and techniques the program presented.
At one point during the afternoon, one woman – let’s call her Joyce – shared her frustrations with a woman in her office (who was not attending my program). Joyce explained that this peer of hers had a unique role which placed her in a “gatekeeper” position.
This peer – let’s call her Roberta – touched key projects at key times, moving paperwork to decision-makers for approval, scheduling meetings of decision-makers with project staff, etc. Roberta tended to move more quickly on activities that her “work friends” would benefit from, and she allowed other activities to sit, untouched –  sometimes for days.
Roberta’s inconsistencies caused much consternation to Joyce and others in the room. I was about to inquire about how the group has tried to address these issues when Joyce stated, “And Roberta is ‘Employee of the Month’ this month!”
I’m certain that my shock was quite apparent; I felt like my jaw dropped to the floor. I sputtered a moment then asked Joyce, “Why would you select Roberta as ‘Employee of the Month’?” Joyce looked at me and calmly said, “It was her turn.”
The class and I spoke awhile about stupid policies; this “EOTM” policy certainly qualified. Employee of the Month programs typically do not celebrate great contributions or performance; they celebrate moderate contribution and (mostly) tenure. Why would an organization want just ONE Employee of the Month? Wouldn’t you want dozens of terrific employees, all recognized for doing great things every day for customers and for the company?
This particular practice is not unique to municipalities. We’ve all experienced this “good intentions gone wrong” policy issue in all kinds of organizations, all across the globe.
Impact of Stupid Policies
Every team member knows which policies are stupid; they talk about them with their peers all the time! Customers know – and some are quick to point out how dumb those policies are. Stupid policies:
     demoralize staff
     Alienate customers
     Cost your company hard dollar profits
How can you reduce the negative impact and undesirable consequences of stupid policies?
1. Spend an hour or two each week, seeking input from team members about policies that inhibit great performance.
2. As you discover stupid policies, eliminate them – or, at least, refine them so they have NO negative impact on great performance.
One company created a “stupid policies” group whose sole purpose was to identify and eliminate policies that inhibit good decisions, full presence, and full commitment. They celebrated their first year’s successes – cutting a policy manual down from 3″ to 30 pages – with a huge dinner party!
S. Chris Edmonds is a sought-after speaker, author, and executive consultant. After a 15-year career leading successful teams, Chris founded his consulting company, The Purposeful Culture Group, in 1990. Chris has also served as a senior consultant with The Ken Blanchard Companies since 1995. He is the author or co-author of seven books, including Amazon best sellers The Culture Engine and Leading at a Higher Level with Ken Blanchard. Learn from his blog posts, podcasts, assessments, research, and videos at Get free resources plus weekly updates from Chris by subscribing here

Beauty brand, duty boundMarcada de motivación – Manhattan Times

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Beauty brand, duty bound

By James Clark

“There are good days, and there are bad days,” says cancer survivor Julissa Pérez, here with relative.

“There are good days, and there are bad days,” says cancer survivor Julissa Pérez, here with relative.

It’s been a year since Julissa Pérez found out she was cancer-free.

“There are good days, and there are bad days,” said the 31-year-old Inwood resident, who battled thyroid cancer and underwent radiation treatment.

It has been a long journey.

“The after-effects of cancer are a process too,” she noted.

Her battled inspired her to raise awareness and to seek to create a network she bills as “supportive, uplifting, and educational” for anyone fighting or affected by cancer.

On Tues., Aug. 9th at Mamajuana Café, Pérez is hosting a reception she has titled “My Beauty Mark,” named after her acceptance of her own cancer surgery scar.

While the event will feature raffles, music, hors d’oeuvre and networking, its principal focus will be hearing from cancer survivors and other speakers, including Eileen Z. Fuentes, Cancer Care Coach and Wellness Specialist. Some present are actively waging battle against the disease.

Myahliah Domínguez has been undergoing chemotherapy treatments for about a year and a half.

Myahliah Domínguez has been undergoing chemotherapy treatments for about a year and a half.

Among them are Gisela Crespo, who was first diagnosed in 1995 with Stage 1 breast cancer and went into remission. Two decades later, Crespo is now waging war against Stage 4 metastatic breast cancer, which has moved into her lungs and spine.

Cancer has made itself known to even the youngest souls.

Pérez has sought to ensure that their journeys too are shared.

Myahliah Domínguez was four when she received her diagnosis of Stage 1 pilocytic astrocytoma, a brain tumor that predominantly afflicts children and young adults.

Myahliah has been undergoing chemotherapy treatments for about a year and a half.

“Their stories are powerful, and strong,” said Pérez.

During her treatment and recovery, Pérez often needed to take sick days from work. The experience made her ponder how others battling cancer are able to undergo treatment and support their families at the same time.

It is why she has aimed to raise $30,000 for individuals and families undergoing

Gisela Crespo is waging war against Stage 4 metastatic breast cancer.

Gisela Crespo is waging war against Stage 4 metastatic breast cancer.

through cancer treatment. Attendees will be asked to donate $20 per person.

Perez hopes the event will serve as an annual tradition, and ultimately, as a stepping stone for a non-profit providing support and resources to those affected by the disease.

Above all, it is her goal that “My Beauty Mark” sparks an honest dialogue that encourages everyone to speak more openly about cancer and to recognize its physical and psychological impacts.

“We are raised to not talk about these things,” said Perez.  “[But] no one should have to go through this alone.” 

For more information or for tickets to “My Beauty Mark,” please visit

Marcada de motivación

Por James Clark

“There are good days, and there are bad days,” says cancer survivor Julissa Pérez, here with relative.

“Hay días buenos y días malos”, dice la sobreviviente del cáncer Julissa Pérez, aquí con un pariente.

Ha pasado un año desde Julissa Pérez descubrió que estaba libre de cáncer.

“Hay días buenos y días malos”, dijo la mujer de 31 años de edad residente de Inwood, que luchó contra el cáncer de tiroides y se sometió a un tratamiento de radiación.

Ha sido un largo viaje.

“Las secuelas de cáncer son un proceso también “, señaló.

Su lucha la inspiró para crear conciencia, así como una red que llama “de apoyo, inspiradora y educativa” para cualquier persona que lucha contra, o es afectada por, el cáncer.

El martes 9 de agosto en Mamajuana Café, Pérez ofrecerá una recepción que ha titulado “My Beauty Mark”, llamada por la aceptación de su propia cicatriz de la cirugía del cáncer.

Si bien el evento contará con rifas, música, entremeses y creación de redes, su enfoque principal será escuchar a sobrevivientes de cáncer y otros oradores, incluyendo a Eileen Z. Fuentes, entrenadora de tratamiento del cáncer y especialista en bienestar. Algunos de los presentes están librando activamente una batalla contra la enfermedad.

Entre ellos estaba Gisela Crespo, quien fue diagnosticada por primera vez en 1995 con cáncer de mama en etapa 1 y entró en remisión. Dos décadas después, Crespo está guerra contra la etapa 4 del cáncer de mama metastásico, que se ha trasladado a sus pulmones y la columna vertebral.

El cáncer se ha dado a conocer incluso con almas más jóvenes.

Gisela Crespo is waging war against Stage 4 metastatic breast cancer.

Gisela Crespo está luchando una Guerra contra el cáncer de mama metastásico etapa 4.

Pérez ha procurado que sus viajes también sean compartidos.

Myahliah Domínguez tenía cuatro años cuando recibió su diagnóstico de astrocitoma pilocítico en etapa 1, un tumor cerebral que afecta predominantemente a niños y adultos jóvenes.

Myahliah ha sido sometida a tratamientos de quimioterapia durante aproximadamente un año y medio.

“Sus historias son poderosas y fuertes”, dijo Pérez.

Durante su tratamiento y recuperación, Pérez a menudo necesita tomar días de enfermedad del trabajo. La experiencia le hizo reflexionar cómo otros que luchan contra el cáncer pueden someterse a tratamiento y mantener a sus familias al mismo tiempo.

Es por eso que ha tenido como objetivo recaudar $30,000 dólares para individuos y familias pasando por un tratamiento del cáncer. Se les pedirá a los asistentes donar $20 dólares por persona.

Pérez espera que el evento funcione como una tradición anual, y en última instancia, como un

Wellness specialist Eileen Z. Fuentes will be a featured speaker.

Eileen Z. Fuentes, especialista en bienestar, será una de las oradoras.

trampolín para que una organización sin fines de lucro brinde apoyo y recursos a los afectados por la enfermedad.

Por encima de todo, es su objetivo que “My Beauty Mark” encienda un diálogo honesto que anime a todos a hablar más abiertamente sobre el cáncer y reconocer sus efectos físicos y psicológicos.

“Somos criados para no hablar de estas cosas”, dijo Pérez. “[Pero] nadie debería tener que pasar por esto solo”. 

Para más información o entradas para “My Beauty Mark”, por favor visite

Confronting the Uncomfortable Reality of Workplace Discrimination

1. M. Bertrand and S. Mullainathan, “Are Emily and Greg More Employable Than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination,” The American Economic Review 94, no. 4 (September 2004): 991-1013.

2. M.S. Harrison and K.M. Thomas, “The Hidden Prejudice in Selection: A Research Investigation on Skin Color Bias,” Journal of Applied Social Psychology 39, no. 1 (January 2009): 134-168.

3. D. Pager, “The Mark of a Criminal Record,” American Journal of Sociology 108, no. 5 (March 2003): 937-975.

4. D.R. Avery, S.D. Volpone, and O. Holmes IV, “Racial Discrimination in Organizations,” ch. 7 in “The Oxford Handbook of Workplace Discrimination,” eds. A.J. Colella and E.B. King (New York: Oxford University Press, 2015).

5. K.A. Couch and R. Fairlie, “Last Hired, First Fired? Black-White Unemployment and the Business Cycle,” Demography 47, no. 1 (February 2010): 227-247; and K.A. Couch, R. Fairlie, and H. Xu, “Racial Differences in Labor Market Transitions and the Great Recession,” in “Transitions Through the Labor Market,” eds. S.W. Polachek and K. Tatsiramos (Somerville, Massachusetts: Emerald Publishing, 2018), 1-54.

6. D.A. Thomas, “Diversity as Strategy,” Harvard Business Review 82, no. 9 (September 2004): 98-108.

7. A. Luksyte, E. Waite, D.R. Avery, et al., “Held to a Different Standard: Racial Differences in the Impact of Lateness on Advancement Opportunity,” Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology 86, no. 2 (April 2013): 142-165.

8. A.N. Smith, M.B. Watkins, J.J. Ladge, et al., “Making the Invisible Visible: Paradoxical Effects of Intersectional Invisibility on the Career Experiences of Executive Black Women,” Academy of Management Journal 62, no. 6 (December 2019): 1705-1734.

9. K.P. Jones, C.I. Peddie, V.L. Gilrane, et al., “Not So Subtle: A Meta-Analytic Investigation of the Correlates of Subtle and Overt Discrimination,” Journal of Management 42, no. 6 (September 2016): 1588-1613.

10. A.M. Czopp, M.J. Monteith, and A.Y. Mark, “Standing Up for a Change: Reducing Bias Through Interpersonal Confrontation,” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 90, no. 5 (May 2006): 784-803.

11. D. Chrobot-Mason, B.R. Ragins, and F. Linnehan, “Second Hand Smoke: Ambient Racial Harassment at Work,” Journal of Managerial Psychology 28, no. 5 (2013): 470-491.

CBRE Says Revenue Per Available Room Will Recover to 2019 Levels by 2023

The updated Coldwell Banker Richard Ellis (CBRE) April 2020 hotel report takes more into account the impact of COVID-19.

And as expected, things may get worse before they get better. So much so, CBRE says the revenue per available room (RevPAR) for hotels will recover to 2019 levels by 2023.

This is not to say there won’t be a jump from the record lows the hotel industry is experiencing in the near future. As a matter of fact, the outlook for the hotel industry is somewhat optimistic.

CBRE April 2020 Hotel Report

In the April 2020 report, Jamie Lane, Sr. Research Director CBRE Hotels Research, Econometric Advisors, says, “We expect challenging times ahead for the U.S. lodging industry, but believe travel and the services associated with it will once again recover and quickly outpace historical peaks once this pandemic is eradicated.”

Lane says, “Our current expectations are that as early as Q3 2020, the activity will begin to stabilize, and a recovery is expected to be underway by Q4.”

CBRE April 2020 hotel report

The optimism is more than welcomed, especially by small hotel operators who by the way make up 61% of the hotel properties in the U.S.

Key Findings of the CBRE April 2020 Hotel Report

As we head to the second half of 2020, the devastating impact of COVID-19 will be felt by businesses and individuals across the board. And these are some of the key findings from the CBRE report:

  • GDP growth will decline by 4% in 2020, before the outbreak the outlook it was 1.9% growth
  • S. RevPAR will decline by 46%, with a contraction of almost 80% in Q2
  • Occupancy will decline by 36%; average daily rate (ADR) is expected to decline by 16% in 2020
  • Occupancy levels are expected to bottom out at 23.3% during the second quarter
  • 37% decline in U.S. revenue per available room for the year

Furthermore, there are some complex constraints that will affect the industry. This includes social distancing and limitations on group gatherings, which is a global issue. Another pressing matter is uncertainty about the financial future. The last thing consumers will do with both of these constraints in place is to travel and stay in hotels.

Even though the industry is going to take a blow, above all, luxury, upper-upscale, urban, airport, and resort property segments will be especially hit hard. The report says these segments showed a 93% decline in RevPAR for the week of March 8-14. On the other hand, the decline for midscale and economy properties was 63%.

When it comes to markets, the most severe immediate impact will take place in locations that take a high percentage of their revenue from March and April. Locations in Phoenix, West Palm Beach, Tampa, New Orleans, Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Tucson are some examples.


The April 2020 CBRE hotel report is optimistic the industry will recover rather quickly. And this is based on data from past shocks and the impact they had on market hotel demand.

The report looks at the tech bubble, 9/11, SARS, and the Great Financial Crisis (GFC). In these four scenarios, the decline was steep and the recovery period was within 6 to 12 months. However, the drop with COVID-19 is high at 46%. The past event with the highest decline was SARS at a little over 30%.

Outside of these events, the Zika outbreak in Miami took 14 to 24 months to recover.

In the case of COVID-19, the RevPAR will recover to 2019 levels by 2023. But this won’t happen before losing nearly $100 billion in rooms revenue alone by 2022 based on pre-COVID-19 forecasts. The downside scenario in the report estimates 6 to 18 months for U.S. hotel demand to recover. And 12 to 24 months for ADR and RevPAR to recover.

The recovery process will require operators to make severe reductions to employees’ hours and compensation. But the report says operators will have to take additional measures. This includes many owners shutting down completely during this period. This is because any additional revenues from operating will not be enough to cover the variable costs of keeping the property open. Similar to how hotels in seasonal locations shut down during the off-season.This the report says may lessen the impact on profitability.

The Positive Outlook

On a positive note, the report highlights the fast recovery of Chinese hotels from the March 2003 SARS outbreak. In that case by July of that year SARS was contained and the hotels did well. The hope is the same scenario will play out for COVID-19, but this will depend on finding a vaccine early.

Another positive aspect of the recovery is U.S. hotels are in a much more profitable position than past recessions. The high-profit margins the industry experienced in 2019 in the U.S. should help.