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Day in the Life of a Leader with Luis Reis, General Manager of Chamisal Tennis & Fitness Club



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Introducing: Day in the Life of a Leader!


We're so excited to launch this new series! Each month we'll be featuring a conversation with a leader in our community about the day-to-day of managing a team, approaches to problem-solving, and career-related anecdotes. We hope you find this series fun and inspiring!


First, a few metrics:


Time as GM at Chamisal: 10 years

Total management experience: 23 years

Currently managing: approximately 100 employees



Luis's leadership style:


How do you get ready for the day?

Most days I try to get ready the day before. This way it is easier for me to have a game plan from the moment I wake up. Each day, first thing, coffee. One cup a day. Then I read as much news as possible on all topics and some related to the industries I work with to help me stay up to date on trends and changes.


How do you approach problem-solving?

My main strategy is to (1) give a problem a score (small, medium, large) and (2) decide if I need to be involved in the solution or if I can/should delegate it to a department manager. If I'm addressing a problem that needs resolution, I normally work backwards. Any problem/issue has a timeline of events. Review the timeline and once you find the cause, address it accordingly.


What's an example of a challenge you're facing right now, either in your role as a leader or in your industry?

Cost of doing business - with payroll, insurance, taxes, supplies and other costs going up it has been very hard to manage our business. It is a delicate balance between keeping prices attractive so we don't lose customers but also covering all expenses and generating a profit.


How do you motivate your team to perform well?

Every team member should know that their voice is heard and their opinion matters, from the lowest paid to the highest paid individual. I normally start by delegating simple tasks and with time move into more critical ones. This gives my team time to learn how to resolve issues and to see how I would normally address situations, so they learn to think a bit like I would in those circumstances.


Who are your leadership role models?

My biggest role model in life was my father. I try to be as calm and composed as my dad was under all circumstances.


I also had a great manager when working for an international resort company. At the time I thought he didn't work at all, but somehow his team performed better than everyone else's around the globe. Later I understood that he was empowering his team to lead and the results showed. He let all of us shine in our respective services and it reflected on him. Perfect!


What advice would you give someone new to leadership?

Slow down and don't make every decision if you manage a team of people. Empower them to decide with you and guide them towards the decision you would make, but accept their opinion even if it's different than your own. You are only as good as the team you manage. Let the spotlight shine on them. The reflection will be on you.


What's a particular anecdote that stands out in your career?

This story is a reminder that you will never be able to please everyone: A customer approaches me one day during a routine walkthrough and complains the pool is very cold and we should consider increasing the temperature of the water. I acknowledged the request and as I walked towards the mechanical room to check if the heater was working properly another customers stops me with a big smile and says, "the pool water is perfect today! You guys are doing such a good job managing the temperature." Those interactions were two minutes apart. It always reminds me that I should never be reactive and always investigate before giving any answers. And, you will never please everyone, so stop trying.




Is there someone you'd like us to feature in an upcoming edition of Day in the Life of a Leader? Contact us below and let us know!





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