Reinventing the Coffee Bar

By Mac M. Martirossian, CPA

How many times have you stayed at a hotel and walked up to a boring and character-less coffee station?  You yawn as you grab a cup of coffee and get frustrated with where to drop your used stirrer and empty sugar packets.  Who could possibly improve this scene and make it a “point of differentiation” and a source of conversation and promotion?

On a recent visit to the Epic Hotel in Miami, the creative folks at Kimpton Hotels have completely re-invented the way to present something as dull, mundane and ordinary as free morning coffee.

Even the sign for identifying the milk containers was replaced with a snorkel mask with “whole” and “skim” written on each goggle.  The morning coffee bar had become the “water cooler” for hotel guests to gather, meet and take photos.

Innovating is difficult to do, because it takes enormous energy and thought.  When done right, it is priceless.

As consumers of services or products, we LOVE creativity and as producers, more often than not, we stand back and wait for someone else to take action….and then we say “Why couldn’t I have thought of that?”

Here are some points to consider: Learn More »

Make your Best Move!

By Lakecia Carter, PMP

There have been several times in my life when I’ve moved from one physical location to another. If you’ve ever moved before, I’m sure you will agree that the most dreaded aspect of any move is the packing! Every time I’ve gone through years and years of “stuff” I’ve accumulated, three things happened during the process: I found some things I forgot I had. I found some things I needed to throw away. I found some things I had been looking for and could still use. As a PM, when we are preparing to go into new territory, we must go through years and years of training, education and experience or our PM Toolkit. I believe the same three things happen to us. Here are 3 tips to keep in mind when it does: Learn More »

Are You a Guilt Ridden Time Manager? Don’t Be!

By Jennifer B. Kahnweiler, Ph.D.

I would guess that millions of dollars have been spent this past year on time management books and training programs. We all seem to want to know the answer to managing the chaos around us.

Somewhere along the way, I realized that I didn’t need to feel guilty about not doing time management correctly. There is no one way to do it. After I shed the guilt I decided to experiment with different approaches to organizing my day.

Colored sticky notes, highlighters and whiteboards? Mindmaps, arrows and circles? They may look weird to others, but to my right brain they work just fine.

And technology helps. I found that using the full functionality of MS Outlook was a lifesaver. Now, as a Mac person, I am still amazed that my calendars synch through some sort of virtual cloud.

I think everyone has to create a fluid system that works for him or her. I also am encouraged that current time management gurus stress strategy over technique. Setting goals and honing in on priorities are what counts. Are you taking the time to sit down and plan your day? Are you working on the right things? Are you able to refocus when necessary?

We all have the same 24 hours. Style doesn’t matter as much as substance. Be open to new tools, create a system that works for you and lose the guilt. It just takes up valuable time.

Go Ahead and Reinvent the Wheel!

By Lakecia Carter, PMP

As PMs, there are common responses that we’ve either encountered or will encounter when we present new ideas to a team. Do any of the following sound familiar to you? “Thanks, but we’ve always done it this way”, “This is what we’ve done in the past” or “After all, there’s no need to reinvent the wheel, right?” These are valid responses because we all leverage existing approaches or processes for the most part. However, what about when the “wheel” is not working? The wheel could be people, processes, or tools. When projects are not moving forward, PMs must create momentum. This may require that you reinvent the wheel. Here are 5 tips to keep in mind when doing so: Learn More »

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