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Blog Article

A Day in the Life of Zac Alft

May 13, 2024

Every day in our industry brings a fresh adventure, and I’m very grateful for that. I remind myself of this daily because without the constant challenge and opportunity, I’d surely hit boredom.

My day kicks off promptly at 5am, up and instinctively diving into reports from the restaurant, night audit, and overnight teams, wrapping up the previous day. Today starts on a high note: a perfect sell overnight, strong outlet sales, and no security issues to report (that’s always a win)! Scanning these reports as I brush my teeth has become as natural as breathing in the first 15 minutes of my day. I take 20 minutes to write out my five non-negotiable tasks for the day: 1) Team Birthday Lunch 2) HLA Board Meeting 3) Finalize Forecast 4) Work on EV Project 5) Workout

Before the day ramps up, I head to the gym for a quick workout. If I don’t get it done before 7am, it’s unlikely to happen.

Upon arriving at the hotel, my priority is connecting with the team. Touching base in all areas sets the tone for the day, allowing us to tackle any potential issues, resolve any guests, or team members concerns swiftly.

Post morning meeting, I often have a leader stay behind for a quick one-on-one session. Today is no different, David (DOE), wanted to connect on the ongoing process of tearing down our Igloo Activation and prepping for our Cabana and Pool Activations.  We closed our Igloos a month earlier this year in hopes of getting our pool opened quicker and capitalizing (fingers crossed) on the early Spring Break vacationers. We spent around 25 minutes poking holes in our plan, most of this time with me going down rabbit holes of “what if’s” and worst-case scenarios.

Back in my office, I tackle the tedious tasks for the day: following up on projects and scheduling meetings with the team and vendors for upcoming capital projects. Our ownership has been amazing this year allowing us to tackle some big projects in the 1st quarter of the year that will move the needle from a guest experience perspective.

Next, I look up and Katie (MM) and Stephanie (DOSM) are walking into my office for our Revenue Strategy Meeting. We jump right into it with our regional powerhouses Nadia and Chuck who graced us with their presence this week. Our hour call flies by as we dug into and poked holes in our Spring/Summer packages and rate strategies with our wonderful Amy (DORM).

A quick call with our owner regarding an EV charging project follows before it’s time for the Employee Birthday Lunch at 1pm. This typically is one of my favorite parts of my role as GM. We have had this in place for a couple of years now and it’s been a great success. Each month of the year we invite our team to “their” birthday lunch with the GM and HRD. Today’s three course meal is complete with a delicious salad, filet/grilled shrimp entrée, and a duo of dessert.

After lunch finishes up, I’m running to my truck to head to our KC HLA Board of Directors meeting at another downtown hotel. It was a great meeting discussing the Super Bowl Parade and the insanely busy March and beyond here in the KC market. I had the opportunity to speak with the City Manager of Kansas City regarding some projects that are extremely important to our HLA and CVA’s success moving forward in preparation of the World Cup here in KC.

Back at the hotel by 4pm, I spend the rest of the day fine-tuning our forecast for the coming month. Budgeting and forecasting are oddly another one of my favorite parts of running our business. It’s a game to make all the parts work together while ensuring that our team, guests, and owners, are taken care of in that order. It’s never an easy task, but one that I love navigating with each month.

I look up and it’s 7:30pm and I call it a day as I’m content with our forecast and what was accomplished.  A final lap to bid the team goodnight leads to an encounter with a tenant of the condo complex that is a part of the hotel. I assist with troubleshooting his Peloton app not working with our bikes and after a patient 20-30 minutes, his issue resolved. I finally conclude my day, grateful for the unpredictability and the amazing team that makes it all worthwhile.