Why Hospitality Needs More Trained Mentors

It’s a common known and verified fact that more restaurants close down every year, than open. Have we ever thought, why so!? Then there are these restaurants which stay the same without any visible change in them or their staff over years and people have gone there, or ordered delivery from there so many times over that the customers start looking for similar options close by, and it’s the same for many hotels as well. Change is the operative word here. Entrepreneurs must see the change that is continuously developing in F&B Industry and must strive to stay ahead of trends, and if they can’t, they should get qualified help before their property ceases to change or worse, get shut down.
Every industry has qualified people who can mentor the early stages of business, however least use of that is seen in the F&B Industry, and the reason behind that is lack of enough experience and knowledge, for the entrepreneurs as well as the mentors. The Hospitality trade is so vast in itself that for someone to have enough experience would mean travelling across the region to gain it, years upon years at a time. Whilst this is not common, it is still available and it should only increase with time.
Since the emergence of business there has been an availability of mentors / consultants, however never has an industry needed it so bad as now like the F&B/Hospitality Industry. With increasing population, people want to enter supply by opening Hospitality establishments like Hotels/Restaurants/Bars/Cafes etc. but without basic knowledge or attention to things like:
– Hygiene
– Taste
– Quality controls in processes, and vendors
– Attention to customer, and overall customer experience
– Attention to staff
It is the above things that should top the priority of the entrepreneur, and not the investment that has gone into buying that big TV on the wall for IPL Matches, or the furniture. However, having said that, when a lot is on the line, and there seems a possibility of a major loss at hand, it is difficult to keep one’s thinking straight, everyone can’t be M. S. Dhoni. The tension of a shutdown is justified when the books are not healthy, but the real factor is that the entrepreneur needs to embrace the winds of change that are flowing. Customers want to see a change, that’s why business is low, and when you make the correct change as well as market that change back to your customers, maintain the positive momentum for some time, the situation can definitely come back in favor. This is where a mentor can be of great help, as that person is not emotionally attached in the same way as the entrepreneur.
Most people take a lot of time to actually call for the help they need, and in too many cases they never do. It’s rather similar for the Hospitality Industry, as is apparent from those shabby restaurants/hotels we see every day and refrain from. They don’t inspire enough confidence in our intelligence for us to seek them out. But imagine the same shabby place with an absolutely clean and polished turnout, tasty food and a welcoming environment, why would you not go there!? It’s quite simple isn’t it, but most owners take a very long time to understand these themself. These are the people who need a Mentor, and ASAP.
You invested in a property, hotel/restaurant/cafe and it didn’t work as well as expected, so now, let’s get bitter and treat everyone badly.
The very least an owner / manager can do, during any stage of the business is to be nice. They say nice is not a very nice word to use, but it’s a very important lesson in Hospitality, be nice to everyone, the customer, the employee, the vendor, the part timer. They are all stakeholders, and it doesn’t cost a thing to be nice, but it goes a very long way in Hospitality. People will remember you for it, and it will bring back good things to you sooner or later as long as you are in the industry.
With 60% of India’s population being below age 35, people are very soon going to have a complete #No Nonsense attitude towards things they care about, and F&B happens to top the list of things most people do care about. Get your priorities as an right owner, be nice, and seek a good mentor as soon as you feel a wind of change.
About the Author
Amit Tejpal is the owner of Tejpal Hospitality, a firm that provides solutions and executes hospitality projects in all fields of Hospitality. He is a green belt in six sigma, and a post graduate in Hospitality from ITC Hotel Management Institute, Gurugram and has also worked for Oberoi Hotels as Senior Management in a career spanning over 15 years.
Amit Tejpal is the owner of Tejpal Hospitality, a firm that provides solutions and executes hospitality projects in all fields of Hospitality. He is a granagement in a career spanning over 15 years.

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