Is Luxury Stingy? Overpriced Hotels and Restaurants

I love staying at nice hotels, but often they feel like a ripoff.

While the La Quinta Inn in Walla Walla Washington offers free wifi, the Grand Hyatt in Los Angeles charges $5 a day.

While In and Out offers free refills on sodas, some five star restaurants charge you $2.00 for every glass you get.

The cost of hosting one more person on wifi or giving someone another $.05 glass of soda is marginal, but the impact is significant.

Maybe most people that go to nice restaurants and hotels don’t care about a dollar or two here or there. But for me instead of creating an experience of luxury, it creates an experience of stinginess. I start to feel like I’m getting nickeled and dimed, because that’s what’s happening.

Which makes me think about who I am as a leader and business owner. Because generosity (within reason) almost always leads to a sense of spaciousness and abundance. Whereas holding things tightly creates the opposite impact on both sides.

So the question is how do I want people to experience me as a leader. After all, the word of mouth created by my generosity is much less expensive than the cost of advertising.


The Art of Leadership

Many people think about leadership as a process or a method.

If I input X then I can get my team to give me Y. And that might be true if the people you were leading were simply robots; easy to program and decode.

But the nature of leadership is that it’s messy humans leading messy humans. Humans who have deep-seated fears, hang-ups from the past, and dreams about the future.

So many leaders try their best to squeeze their teams into a box they want them to be in. They talk about leadership like a big chess game or a mass propaganda campaign. For a long time, that kind of leadership was effective, but the smarter and more powerful human beings have become, the less effective that style of leadership has become.

This is why I often talk to my clients about the art of leadership.

When you see leadership as an art you can begin to see the constraints of your team like the colors in your palette.

You can begin to see the uncertainty in the market place as the distortion your eyes create when it looks out on a landscape.

You can begin to see each challenge as an invitation to create art, inspiration, and possibility.

But this can only happen if you let go of the machine of leadership and the x=y mentality.

If you paint by numbers 1 may equal red, but if you paint as an artist 1 can be any color you want, so long as it invokes purpose, beauty, and serves the people you long to change.

Leadership as an art can be intimidating because what’s right gives way to what works and who’s in charge gives way to who’s committed.

But people are done being treated like machines. Especially the kind of smart, talented, caring individuals who you want to lead.

This is why when you take on the task of leading with art not only does your life get easier and more interesting, the people around you also become better at being who they already are.