Editorial Board   

Mr. Narasimhan

S. Lakshmi Narasimhan

Founder, Ignite Insight LLC

S Lakshmi Narasimhan is the Founder of Ignite Insight LLC a New York City based consultancy, which specializes in Group Executive Training, Coaching and Consulting.

Prior to founding his company, Mr. Narasimhan was the Vice President Finance of an award winning Hong Kong headquartered luxury hotel chain - Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts. He has more than 25 years of experience in the hospitality industry (14 of them in a senior corporate level) and has held diverse portfolios from a hotel Financial Controller to a group level Human Resources position, head of Corporate Internal Audit and head of Corporate Financial Systems. His career is epitomized by new and challenging roles.

Mr. Narasimhan has designed and developed a series of 2-Day Finance Courses amongst which the two signature offerings are titled “Optimizing Hotel Profits” for senior Hotel and Resident Managers and “Restaurant Profits A la Carte” for Food and Beverage Directors and Executive Chefs in the hospitality industry, which he delivers personally. The unique aspects of the course presentations are: jargon free, simplified financial concepts, use of visual teaching methods through color, shapes and movement to reinforce and cement learning, practical exercises in budgeting and financial analysis and many more.

Mr. Narasimhan teaches graduate as well as undergraduate courses during the Spring and Fall semesters as an adjunct faculty member at the New York University, Tisch Center for Hospitality & Tourism. Courses include hospitality finance, financial management, business development, rooms division management and investment analysis and financing.

Mr. Narasimhan is a prolific writer having his own blog while also contributing to prestigious third party blogs. He published his first book: "Discover the Genius in the Mirror - You are an Einstein waiting to be discovered" - an exercise book on how to discover your own genius through introspection. It is available online on Amazon and other literary outlets.

Please visit http://www.ignite-insight.biz for more information.

Mr. Narasimhan can be contacted at 201-253-5000 or narasimhan@ignite-insight.biz

Coming up in April 2018...

Guest Service: Empowering People

Excellent customer service is vitally important in all businesses but it is especially important for hotels where customer service is the lifeblood of the business. Outstanding customer service is essential in creating new customers, retaining existing customers, and cultivating referrals for future customers. Employees who meet and exceed guest expectations are critical to a hotel's success, and it begins with the hiring process. It is imperative for HR personnel to screen for and hire people who inherently possess customer-friendly traits - empathy, warmth and conscientiousness - which allow them to serve guests naturally and authentically. Trait-based hiring means considering more than just a candidate's technical skills and background; it means looking for and selecting employees who naturally desire to take care of people, who derive satisfaction and pleasure from fulfilling guests' needs, and who don't consider customer service to be a chore. Without the presence of these specific traits and attributes, it is difficult for an employee to provide genuine hospitality. Once that kind of employee has been hired, it is necessary to empower them. Some forward-thinking hotels empower their employees to proactively fix customer problems without having to wait for management approval. This employee empowerment—the permission to be creative, and even having the authority to spend money on a customer's behalf - is a resourceful way to resolve guest problems quickly and efficiently. When management places their faith in an employee's good judgment, it inspires a sense of trust and provides a sense of higher purpose beyond a simple paycheck. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate and manage guest satisfaction in their operations.