Posted By: SilverBirch Hotels & Resorts
Interview: Vijay Pahuja, Director of Sales, TownePlace Suites® by Marriott Mississauga – Airport Corporate Centre
“Move forward” – We make the company successful. We will work towards growth of the business, and we will grow as individuals too.
SBHR: Vijay can you tell us a little about yourself?
VP: The journey started about 20 years ago when I completed Hotel school. I started in operations as a restaurant server. I got a taste of the hotel day to day in that year. This was when I realized that my heart and soul belonged to Sales & Marketing and from there I haven’t looked back! I love it each and every day! My first Sales job was in Asia with Starwoord Hotels & Suites; then Hyatt Hotels where I spent a lot of time opening new hotels, my favourite was the Grand Hyatt in New Delhi in August 2000. Lot of hard work and a lot of team spirit! From there I went to Singapore and finally to Canada. My wife and I decided to call Toronto our home in 2001. In Canada I worked with IHG and then came to SilverBirch Hotels & Resorts. I have been with SBHR for 6 years now and love every minute! I am looking forward to all of the exciting change and growth of our company in 2013 and beyond.
SBHR: What does Growth mean to you?
VP: To me growth constitutes four metrics: growing topline revenues and hotel profitability; exceeding our guests’ expectations, this drives growth; professional development for our associates; growing the brand equity in the local community.
SBHR: Why is the Growth value so important to you?
VP: The Growth value is very dear to me. Growth is the only way to be successful. If we aren’t growing we become stagnant and we start to lose associates and guests. It is so important to continue to learn and grow ourselves professionally.
SBHR: How does the Growth value guide you in your day to day life?
VP: As a professional, if you believe in continuous learning for yourself and your organization you are successful. You not only help yourself but your team and your organization to become better.
SBHR: Why do you think the Growth value is important to an organization?
VP: I think it is critical to an organization to be successful. Growth helps drive profitability in both assets and human capital.
SBHR: Can you share an example of when you witnessed an associate exemplify Growth?
VP: Absolutely. I would actually like to share two. Over the weekend we had a guest from another hotel in the area stop into our hotel this past weekend. He stopped by our hotel and the only person available to show him around was our housekeeping supervisor. She gave him such confidence in staying with us; and our associates made him feel so at home that he decided to move to our hotel, and now calls us home for the next year and a half. Not only is he staying with us, but he is a project manager who is now looking to bring his entire team to stay with us for 7 months! This is an example of how each of our associates are “Guest Obsessed”!
The other I want to share is about our Guest Services Manager. She is talking to our guests each and every day. In every conversation she is wearing a sales hat and asking them about whom else in their organization is travelling and every day is passing along sales leads to our sales managers for more business. At the front of the house we now have an extension of our sales team.