Bangalore Desk, Delhi Magazine: Varun Mohan, GM of Hyatt Centric MG Road Bangalore, is regarded for being a results-driven leader who is adaptable to shifting business realities. Varun’s leadership style and attitude, with over thirteen years of experience, has not only been about positions held, but can best be defined as a platform for others to flourish and progress on all fronts. Varun’s business acquaintances frequently describe him as tech-savvy, people-oriented, an active listener, and a strong believer in transparency and working ethics.
Q1. Tell me about your background and success journey.
My association with Hyatt has been a journey of meaningful progression. While I pen down my thoughts today, as a General Manager of Hyatt Centric MG Bangalore, 14 years ago I was inducted as a Corporate Leadership trainee, from my Hotel Management School. The correlation of my development has primarily been driven by the expansion of Hyatt portfolio in India through the last decade. Each of the hotels that I have been associated to, have added many facets to my professional understanding which contribute to my current and past achievements. I bring to the table, a fresh perspective of handling people, strengthening revenue streams and innovative concepts to curtail bottom-line costs.
Q2. What are the challenges you faced so far?
One major challenge I faced during the COVID19 time was managing the cash flow along with the change of segment- from transient business hotel to leisure hotel post COVID. Targeting leisure guests packages were created keeping every guests need in mind starting from families, couples, millennials and leisure group. Ensuring tie-up in new forums to increase our visibility for our other operating departments (gym, pool and spa) also ensured generating more cash flow for the hotel. 20% of the overall Non-Qualified Revenue was contributed from Staycation (Half Board) & Centrication (Full Board) packages.
Q3. What are the nearby tourist places and the best time to visit them?
An early morning trip to the Nandi Hills, followed by a specially curated breakfast nestled in a vineyard along the foothills of the Nandi Valley. This one-of-a-kind opportunity to explore nature while engaging all of your senses is a must-do while visiting the city. A customized vineyard tour also includes an experience to learn from a sommelier and a wine tasting with culinary crafts. After that, step out of the hotel and explore Bengaluru like a local. Visiting well-known shopping hubs such as Brigade Road, Commercial Street, and Cubbon Park. Guests can end the day by unwinding by the poolside while sipping creative drinks or exploring Bengaluru’s vibrant nightlife at the restaurants and pubs close to our hotel.
Q4. Your thoughts on the ups and downs in the Indian Hospitality Industry in 2021?
Keeping all stake holders together in the most positive way for the last 20 months – our guests, our associates, our ownership stakeholders and our vendors was one of the major challenge in the hotel industry in 2021. Our road to recovery has been at a faster pace than the market and we have been the strongest in all our performance metrics post the lockdowns, and I am very certain it is the outcome of how we held each of the mentioned pillars during the most strenuous times for our industry.
I foresee a lot of development opportunities for hotels and aggregators in leisure destinations, B & C tier cities. Rise of new age/ lifestyle hotel brands would be more common as it appeals to the larger younger populace in the country. It would be fair to say, that hotels would be known for experiential platforms rather than brands alone.
Q5. What advice would you give to leaders in other organizations, who are just starting their journey?
My advice to budding hoteliers is to work hard and be passionate about what you do. Be patient and work on honing your talents. And there are long-term benefits if you are passionate about your career. Every day, you should learn, unlearn, and relearn.