We had the good fortune of connecting with Jeff Bartel and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jeff, what makes you happy? Why?
More than anything else, “giving” makes me the happiest. With family and friends, it is giving all my heart, soul, passion, energy, and purpose to them. With commerce and community, it is the giving of my time, experience, advice, economic and social capital, and resources to the people and places around me. Beyond that, it is giving whatever else I may have to help others beyond the businesses, community entities and associations in my area–whether that is through philanthropy or public policy, or other areas. After having read Adam Grant’s seminal book “Give and Take,” it has become clear to me that I enjoy being a “giver.” There is certain joy and self-actualization that comes from focusing on others and that translates into joy and fulfillment for oneself. And possibly, strangely, over time, the more that direction is focused outward and toward giving to others, the less the day to day problems and frustrations affect me. I’m not saying they don’t, but instead of thinking about “self,” when the focus is “others,” it helps make my own challenges and issues less anxious or stressful, and brings a certain peace and harmony to it all.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Hamptons Group is an alternative investment and strategic advisory firm headquartered in Coral Gables—with assets, investments, projects, and clients across the United States and worldwide. Its commercial ventures, partners, and investments include public and private companies based throughout the U.S., Latin America, Europe, and Asia; national and regional investors and developers; local governments and agencies; public utilities, contractors and vendors; as well as educational and civic institutions. Most importantly, we focus on investing in people, projects, and positions that are consistent with social responsibility, sustainability and environmental integrity, corporate governance best practices, good government, and public integrity. It was while a senior C-suite executive at two Fortune 200 companies that I decided to broaden my professional and personal opportunities, to establish a personal business vision and real enterprise ownership and create a business investment, advisory, and financial services platform where I could work with people, places, companies, and executives who do the right thing and do things right. I sought to establish a team and firm culture with the best and brightest colleagues and affiliates—to make wise, well-placed, and thoughtful investments of time, talent and treasure, to seek greater balance in my life and help those around me do the same, and to dedicate more time and resources to community service, philanthropy, part-time university teaching and writing, corporate board work, and family. At Hamptons Group, our core values drive everything we do. We are focused every day on: Value Creation and Asset Preservation; a Strategic Mindset and Entrepreneurial Vision; Outstanding Resources and Relationships; Seeking and Obtaining Competitive Advantage; Executing with Effectiveness and Excellence; Strong, Tested, and Enduring Fundamentals; Relentless Pursuit of Opportunities; Success with Integrity and Ingenuity; a Culture of Inclusion, Empowerment, and Innovation; and Serving as a Role Model for Corporate Responsibility and Citizenship.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I can’t tell you how many times I have driven first-time visitors and out-of-town friends from the airport or their hotel, over the MacArthur to Miami Beach past the colossal cruise ships at PortMiami and the mansions of Star Island, up Ocean Drive and Collins Avenue with all its Art Deco and colors, looped back to the mainland across the Julia Tuttle Causeway with the water glistening and the small islands dotting the bay, headed south past the skyscrapers of downtown and through the glass-lined street canyon of Brickell Avenue, over the bridge to the getaway vibe of Key Biscayne peering out at the Miami and Miami Beach skyline on the north side and the Grove and Gables waterfront on the horizon to the south, then down past Vizcaya through Coconut Grove and the tree-canopied streets of Main and Ingraham Highways and Old Cutler Road—all with the sunroof open while playing Steely Dan or Sting music in the background—and have my guests turn to me and say, awestruck, how stunning and beautiful Miami is. As for the best places to eat, it’s tough to beat Prime One Twelve for steak, Joe’s Stone Crab for you name it, Zuma for Asian fusion, Cecconi’s for a great patio dinner, Sapore di Mare for authentic Italian, and my favorite Miami’s Best Pizza near UM, or the cafecito and croqueta window at Versailles. We are so blessed to live in such a vibrant, diverse, sensuous, and sun-soaked city where others want to come to vacation. Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would really like to ShoutOut to teachers and other educators. They take their profession incredibly seriously, they have an inordinate impact on students and even students’ parents, and they do all of this for the love of teaching, certainly not for the compensation of money or fame or adoration. When I see the incredible effort and dedication of teachers for my own children, their willingness to always be there to help nurture students and guide or reset them, it is remarkable. The contribution they make to the development of children–not just cognitively but well beyond that to issues of character and deep intellectual thought–is astounding. As a parent of a teenager and a middle school student, they should be thanked so much.