Editorial Board   

Mr. Courtnell

Paul Courtnell

Director, Leisure & Resorts Group, Gunster LLP

Paul Courtnell Jr. is a senior partner at Gunster, Attorneys at Law with eight offices in Florida. He developed The Leisure and Resorts Group and serves as Director. The Group provides specialized legal and consulting services to the hospitality, recreational and resort development industries. Mr. Courtnell earned his undergraduate degree from Ohio State University in 1965 and his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Florida School of Law in 1973, both with honors. Mr. Courtnell joined Gunster in 1976 and concentrates in the areas of: lodging and resorts; real estate finance (representing both borrowers and lenders); commercial real estate and hospitality transactions; hotel management and franchise agreements; public finance; public/private partnerships; club structures; and timeshare. Mr. Courtnell was nationally recognized in 2010 by the leading legal directory Chambers and Partners in the area of Leisure & Hospitality. He is member of the Florida Bar, Urban Land Institute (Recreational Development Council), International Society of Hospitality Consultants (ISHC) and American Resort Development Association (ARDA). His experience with resort real estate, real estate finance and hospitality properties spans four decades. Mr. Courtnell is a featured speaker for the National Golf Foundation, the Urban Land Institute, ARDA, the Lodging Conference, and other organizations.

Mr. Courtnell can be contacted at 561-650-0517 or pcourtnell@gunster.com

Coming up in March 2020...

Human Resources: Confronting a Labor Shortage

With the unemployment rate at its lowest level in decades (3.7%), what has always been a perennial problem for human resource professionals - labor shortage - is now reaching acute levels of concern. It is getting harder to find and recruit qualified applicants. Even finding candidates with the skills to succeed in entry-level positions has become an issue. In addition, employee turnover rates remain extremely high in the hotel industry. As a result of these problems, hotel HR managers are having to rethink their recruitment strategies in order to hire the right talent for the right job. First, hotels have been forced to raise their wages and offer other appealing perks, as a way to attract qualified candidates. Secondly, HR managers are reassessing their interviewing techniques, focusing less on the answers they receive to questions and more on observable behavior. Part of this process includes role-playing during the interview, so that the recruiter can gauge how a candidate works through specific problems and interacts with other team members. Additionally, some HR managers are also creating internal talent pools as a way to address labor shortages. Instead of utilizing department resources to find new hires with specific skills for needed positions, hotels are cultivating talent pools internally and preparing their employees to assume leadership roles whenever the time comes. They are also placing greater emphasis on a company culture that is more performance-based, as a way to curb employee turnover, increase employee satisfaction, and assure higher levels of customer service. Finally, recognizing the importance of employee retention as a way to lessen the impact of a tight labor market, some HR managers are instituting generous reward programs in order to retain their top performers. The March Hotel Business Review will explore what some HR professionals are doing to address these and other issues in their departments.