031 | Do the Right Thing, Then Do the Thing Right with Sterling Stoudenmire


Sterling Stoudenmire is versatile executive proven in uniquely challenging situations involving transformation, turnaround, re-engineering and disruption. A successful, top-tier consultant and chief executive, he delivers value through the synthesis of a unique and distinct skillset in finance, strategy and technology combined with innate ability to lead, inspire and mentor others.

Sterling’s diverse career includes business consulting with Arthur Andersen and Accenture, Vice President of Research & Development for the Orange Lake Country Club, Senior Vice President and Chief Executive Officer of Island One Resorts, Managing Partner of Sterling Leisure Asset Management, Operating Partner of Van Dyke Holdings, and President & CEO of America’s Best Franchising Inc.

In this episode, Sterling reveals some of the critical success factors he has identified in business over the course of his career, including:

  • Do the Right THING, then Do the Thing Right
  • To lead the people, walk behind them
  • Innovation starts with the customer…see the world from their perspective, then let the products flow from their needs, both explicit and implicit
  • Always look for 1.01 when hiring, .99 is a long slow path to mediocrity
  • Set goals, provide resources, remove obstacles…people will amaze you with their ingenuity, perseverance, and commitment once you set them on the path with the tools they need to succeed
  • Share the view out of the front of the bus with the entire team, as well as the results of the journey so far, on a regular basis
  • The key ingredients for a happy, productive, and committed workforce: Autonomy, A sense of purpose, the opportunity to grow and learn
  • The key components of any business are People, Process & Technology [in that order].

Resources & Links

  • 311 | Shelters From the Norm: Hotels used for hospitals and housing face unexpected problems

    A year ago, Darshan Patel, CEO of Hotel Investment Group in San Diego, California, was one of the first hoteliers in the U.S. to step up and offer properties to overwhelmed hospitals seeking places to care for COVID and non-COVID patients as well as vulnerable populations. As the crisis eases and Hotel Investment Group works to return the hotels to business, Patel is negotiating with local governments to pay for the wear and tear on the properties. Patel is not alone as many hoteliers are unexpectedly dealing with problems that state and local governments’ urgent decisions have created, including property damage, increased costs and eviction bans. This report is the second in a two-part series examining the pros and cons of opening hotels to alternative uses during the pandemic. It is part of Long Live Lodging’s special coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.

  • 310 | Hotels Convert to Housing: Federal COVID-19-relief funds fuel transactions

    Dhruv Patel, president of Ridgemont Hospitality, in October shared a bittersweet moment with his parents, Pravin and Sima Patel, when the family business sold the first motel that Pravin had built from the ground up more than 30 years ago. But they rest assured knowing it was the right decision because the 22-room property is being converted into affordable housing for military veterans at risk of homelessness. The transaction is among hundreds taking place across the U.S. as state and local governments work with non-profit agencies to create affordable housing solutions for vulnerable populations amid the COVID-19 pandemic. In Episode 310 Long Live Lodging reports on the financial and legal aspects of what it takes to convert a hotel into long-term housing. This report is part of Long Live Lodging’s special coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.

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