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Mea culpa or ‘mea gulpa’

In Latin, mea culpa means “my mistake.” I use “mea gulpa” to stand for words that are swallowed before they are spoken.

My mind is rarely out of marketing mode. Some may call it daydreaming, but recently, seemingly out of nowhere, yet another idea sparked. (Speaking of “nowhere,” I don’t think anything really comes out of “nowhere.” Nowhere pronounced another way is “now here.” Opportunities abound. It is up to us to tune in).

Anyway, I mentioned to my husband — an awesome but more mainstream kind of guy when it comes to hotels — that it might be a good idea for the next hotel I work with to offer a “higher tea” instead of a high tea. Higher tea, of course, would be high tea with some hooch involved. I did not receive a comment from my passenger. Pressing on, I said, “Perhaps we could host a happy hour and then a happier hour. For happy hour we could offer a 30-minute meditation, then throw the wine in for the happier hour.”

Husband’s response? Something akin to, “I don’t like it. I don’t think it’s going to appeal to that many people, and may even turn off a few.”

“But,” I continued, “we could do a guided meditation on positive business outcomes: closing a deal, landing a contract, visualizing an event turning out as they please.” Silence followed by a sigh. 

But is he right? I was brand manager of Hotel Monaco in the year the GM of the Seattle Monaco came up with the idea of putting a goldfish in every room. I must say I had the same reaction my husband had to my idea: “Huh?” (All I could think of were the floaters on top of the bowl and if a goldfish runner would turn into a union position). It turned out to be the biggest public relations and marketing campaign in hospitality circles for a few years, bringing in lots of revenues, loyalty and good storytelling (and I should add that when my husband stayed in the Denver Monaco he was very happy to get a goldfish all his own).

I always advise people when I lead or consult not to edit their thoughts. Be willing to be adventurous, sound dumb on occasion and potentially create something groundbreaking. What is it inside of us that holds us back from veering outside the mainstream? Where would we be if no one did? I shudder to think. 

Enjoy your higher tea, your happier hours and distinctive thoughts, with or without the hooch.

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