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. Mr. Narasimhan  teaches Financial Management related courses during Spring and Fall semesters as Adjunct Assistant Professor at the New York University, Jonathan M Tisch Center for Hospitality.

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 titled "Optimizing Hotel Profits" for non-financial managers 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. Read testimonials about his courses.  His online academy Profits Master Class offers courses that are self-paced, easy to understand in an inter-active, blended learning environment.

Mr. Narasimhan's special interest is in the gamification of instruction. He has developed a complete card game (with a 75-page Player Manual) which teaches the principles of revenue yield management and related topics with all the benefits of a game environment. The game makes you the Revenue Manager of a fictitious hotel allowing you to take all the decisions that a typical Revenue Manager of a hotel takes to optimize revenue yield. He also blogs about hotel, restaurant revenue management and profitability.

Mr. Narasimhan 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 on www.amazon.com and www.barnesandnoble.com both in print as well Kindle/Nook formats. His free monthly newsletter Voyages of Discovery is dedicated to empowering individuals discover the genius in them.

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

Linkedin Profile: www.linkedin.com/in/slakshminarasimhan/

Mr. Narasimhan can be contacted at +1 201-253-5000 or narasimhan@ignite-insight.biz

Coming up in September 2020...

Hotel Group Meetings: Demand vs. Supply

It is a great time for hotel group meetings. It is expected that once again this sector will grow by 5-10% in 2020, partly due to the increasing value of in-person group meetings. Because people now spend so much time in front of their screens, face-to-face interactions have become a more treasured commodity in our modern world. Plus, the use of social media reinforces the value of engagement, discussion, conversation, and networking - all areas where group meetings shine. Despite this rosy outlook, there is a concern that demand for meetings far exceeds the supply of suitable venues and hotels. There are very few "big box" properties with 500-plus rooms and extensive conference facilities being built, and this shortage of inventory could pose a serious challenge for meeting planners. In addition to location concerns, the role of the meeting planner has also evolved significantly. Planners are no longer just meeting coordinators - they are de facto travel agents. Cultural interactions, local dining, experiential travel, and team-building activities are all now a part of their meeting mix. Plus, they have to cater to evolving tastes. Millennials are insisting on healthier venues and activities, and to meet their demands, hotels are making yoga breaks, fresh-pressed juices, plant-based diets, state-of-the-art gyms, and locally-sourced menus available. Millennials are also insisting that meeting venues practice Corporate Social Responsibility, which means upholding sustainable and ethical values; investment in the local community; health and well-being of employees; and general business practices that reflect being good citizens of the planet. Finally, there is a growing trend to merge meetings with other local events, such as music festivals, sporting events, and cultural attractions. The December Hotel Business Review will report on issues relevant to group meetings and will document what some hotels are doing to support this part of their operations.