Food! One of the basic necessity of all living objects! The love for food for me goes back to my school days when my mother used to cook variety of delicious breakfast and meals to keep us all happy. Also the attraction for eating out in a restaurant was always there. There was this restaurant close to our home in Chembur, Mumbai which was famous for its butter chicken and all tandoori dishes. Eating out was luxury in those days but my father always made it a point to take us out and enjoy our meal. I used to be amazed at the consistency with which the butter chicken was made. I was 10 years old and always wondered how that damn thing could taste the same every-time I had it even after a gap of six months! That was my first direct love with the hotel industry!
Also I used to make good tea at home and my father always joked with my mom saying “our son can make better tea than both of us!” (My father made morning tea as most fathers do nowadays and my mother evening tea”) This gave me a lot of confidence and happiness and was my first step towards doing hotel management. After my 12th, everyone in my family wanted me to do Engineering (as both my father and elder brother are engineers) But I convinced them that I had no aptitude for the same and wanted to do something out of the box. When I mentioned about hotel management, my mother was skeptical about it, ( naturally as in those days,in 1986, this course was looked at below dignity) but my father supported me and convinced my mom too for a green signal.
I got selected in IHM, Mumbai, the best institute in India (still is) and my long journey in this industry began. I completed my hotel industrial training from Oberoi Towers (now, The Oberoi) Mumbai and was selected for the internship at The Taj Mahal Palace and intercontinental, Mumbai. For me The best hotel in India if not in the world!
After gaining experience and serving the Taj, I decided to be on my own and shifted to Nasik and started my own Restaurant- The Pavilion -Chinese restaurant. Its been 22 years now and still going strong.
Why does Hotel Management even exist?
The food industry or restaurant industry is such that it caters to the basic need of a person, food! The trend for eating out is no longer a luxury but it is a necessity for many as both man and woman of the house are working couple. At-least twice a week or in some cities even more, people tend to go to a restaurant and have a good time. Good time includes, good food, music, entertainment, service and a great lively atmosphere. It actually recharges many person to put in more efforts at work the following week.
How one can become a professional hotelier?
One needs to have proper education and training to become a professional hotelier. In order to open a restaurant all pros and cons of the place have to be studied. Its location, its clientele, its menu, its kitchen site, equipment, furniture, decor and interior. All work in conjunction.
The Hotel Management academics
Hotel management is a 3 year degree course conducted by National council for hotel management, New Delhi under Ministry of tourism New Delhi.There is an all India entrance exam after which one is allotted admission to an institute based on one’s scores. (There are 23 central institutes and also some state institutes attached to National council fot hotel management.)
After getting selected to any of the institutes, one has to undergo 4 months of industrial hotel training during the 2nd year of the course. This is the trailer of the things to come in the future. This is a rigorous training program in a 5 Star hotel where the trainee is trained through all the departments of a hotel. It’s the survival of the fittest.!
Do you have these qualities in you?
The restaurant industry is client oriented. Its a food and service industry. Everyday is a new day even though we serve the same food and do all the routine activities day in day out. One must learn to please the guests, be humble, be polite, look after the guests well, listen to their grievances, rectify the grievances and be innovative. Hygiene plays a major part while opening a restaurant. Hardworking, punctuality, sincerity, honesty and pleasing personality go a long way in making your restaurant successful!
Over and above all this is the food and service one gives at its restaurant/hotel, which is remembered by guests and goes long way for a restaurant to be visited again and again.
Future of Hotel Management in India
The hotel industry contributes to almost 3% of GDP in India which is more than the IT industry here. India boasts of some of the best hotel chains from the world as also some best restaurants serving the best cuisines of the world. There is no death to the hotel industry. As our economy grows and our country attracts foreign investments our hotel industry will also take a big leap forward. It will create lot of jobs for the professionals, skilled and unskilled personnel too.
Stability and Security
The most important thing is to secure admission to a good institute by appearing for the entrance examination. The more renowned institute, better is the job opportunity in a leading hotel chain. Also one gets to learn on job. Promotions are faster. There are enough options one can select after completing the 3 year course
One can choose from the following
- Hotel, restaurants
- Cruise liners
- Industrial Catering, Hospital Catering
- Private Caterers
- Sales and Marketing
- Become an Entrepreneur, Just like ME! 😉
Try to find out your USP or uniqueness?
I am running my restaurant single handedly without any personnel for the last 22 years and boast of 90% regular clientele who come back again and again to my place. This is my USP and uniqueness in the field. Even though our is a labor oriented industry, I have eliminated that thing in my establishment and have tasted success in it; how did i do this?
I visited places in Europe and USA where there are street cafes, small restaurants, run only by a couple. The husband is the chef and the wife serves clients at the table! Also, where there are rooms to stay in Switzerland, Austria, France etc, the husband-wife team clean up the room, make up the room, clean toilets and keep them ready for the guests when they return from day’s sightseeing! There is no labor and hence i decided to adopt above Funda!
I chose this profession as I always wanted to do something different. I pursued it, worked hard, followed my passion, worked sincerely, honestly and smartly. My message to you will be there is a huge scope for you to do things differently. Always follow your dream, whether it is sports,a beauty parlour course, an event management degree or a hotel management degree. Always perform at your best, give it your best shot, work hard towards achieving your goals, be honest and sincere and whatever you choose be the best! Success will follow. Do not run behind easy money- on the other hand once you are successful, money will follow you!