2017 Looks Great for Business: Gaurav Singh

The GM of Courtyard by Marriott and Fairfield by Marriott in Bengaluru believes in taking a challenge and making it a strength. Just one of the reasons behind his remarkable first year performance in an extremely competitive market.

GAURAV SINGH, the young dynamic General Manager of the Courtyard by Marriott and Fairfield by Marriott in Bengaluru's Outer Ring Road, spoke with BW Hotelier exclusively on the challenges ahead for his hotels and how his first year in operation was in an already highly competitive market.

“We opened in December 2015, so last year was actually our first year in operation. This year, the aim will be to stabilise the hotels and take it forward,” Singh told us, adding that 2017, according to him looked bright, with the current economic and political condition seeming to be at the right place with good indicators. 2017 will be good from the business point of view.

Speaking on his charge, he explained, “We’re located on the outer ring road, which has become the real hub for the IT sector in Bangalore. We’ve got great neighbours and big corporates and they are going to grow this year.” He added that the growth would be at a phenomenal pace, going by what he has seen in just one year.

A very important part of a new hotel is working to specific goals with a balanced scorecard approach, Singh told us. “We try and fix our parameters year on year, based on how we perform vis-à-vis our competition,” he added.

A huge part of managing the impact and reputation of the hotel of course demands on social media, he agreed. The hotel, has had excellent reviews on both Zomato as well as Tripadvisor according to Singh. “On Tripadvisor among 650 hotels in Bangalore, Courtyard by Marriott ranked 2nd and Fairfield by Marriot 6th,” he proudly told us.

“From the perspective of our competition and our rev par growth among our competition, in the first year of operations itself, we have already hit fair share. It’s quite rare to be at an index of one and above,” he added.

One of the major differentiators in the hotels was the way that they approached the manpower issues. Marriott has consistently ranked in the top 10 best places to work, he reminded us, adding that unique programs like a drive to improve employee fitness, trickling down from the leadership team, whose exercise regime and times are measured, with an instructor actually encouraging employees to take breaks and work out, even during the work day, has really paid great dividends.

One of the major challenges of the industry, one which Singh said was already very evident, was dealing with the millennial workforce. “If you are open and aware of it, you will take the challenge and make it a strength,” was Singh’s motto. The work force is broken up into houses, much like in school with regular competitions taking place to keep energy levels up. “They won’t stay for 20 years, but at least, it will keep them engaged a longer,” Singh added.

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