Editorial Board   

Mr. Nijhawan

Sanjay Nijhawan

COO, Guoman Hotels (UK)

With extensive experience of working for some of the biggest brands in the business, including Hilton, Holiday Inn, Marriott and Forte, Sanjay Nijhawan has been in the hospitality industry for over 17 years. Mr. Nijhawan joined Thistle Hotels in 2004 as general manager for The Tower in central London. He quickly moved on to area general manager for the Tower and City Barbican before being promoted in 2006 to area general manager for three further central London hotels - Thistle Marble Arch, The Selfridge and Guoman Hotels' flagship property The Cumberland. Earlier this year Mr. Nijhawan was promoted to Chief Operating Officer of Guoman Hotels (UK) overseeing the development of a collection of six international deluxe properties in central London. Speaking about his vision for Guoman Hotels, Mr. Nijhawan said: "Guoman Hotels will be a collection of unique hotels, where the key differential is the quality of our product, service and people. We will deliver exceptional service, through the exceptional people that work with us." Before joining Guoman Hotels (UK) Mr. Nijhawan spent two years with Hilton Hotels where he was responsible for a portfolio of five properties across south east England. Mr. Nijhawan graduated from Thames Valley University in 1992 with a degree in hotel management.

Mr. Nijhawan can be contacted at 0870 333 9280 or Sanjay.nijhawan@guoman.co.uk

Coming up in March 2019...

Human Resources: An Era of Transition

Traditionally, the human resource department administers five key areas within a hotel operation - compliance, compensation and benefits, organizational dynamics, selection and retention, and training and development. However, HR professionals are also presently involved in culture-building activities, as well as implementing new employee on-boarding practices and engagement initiatives. As a result, HR professionals have been elevated to senior leadership status, creating value and profit within their organization. Still, they continue to face some intractable issues, including a shrinking talent pool and the need to recruit top-notch employees who are empowered to provide outstanding customer service. In order to attract top-tier talent, one option is to take advantage of recruitment opportunities offered through colleges and universities, especially if they have a hospitality major. This pool of prospective employees is likely to be better educated and more enthusiastic than walk-in hires. Also, once hired, there could be additional training and development opportunities that stem from an association with a college or university. Continuing education courses, business conferences, seminars and online instruction - all can be a valuable source of employee development opportunities. In addition to meeting recruitment demands in the present, HR professionals must also be forward-thinking, anticipating the skills that will be needed in the future to meet guest expectations. One such skill that is becoming increasingly valued is “resilience”, the ability to “go with the flow” and not become overwhelmed by the disruptive influences  of change and reinvention. In an era of transition—new technologies, expanding markets, consolidation of brands and businesses, and modifications in people's values and lifestyles - the capacity to remain flexible, nimble and resilient is a valuable skill to possess. The March Hotel Business Review will examine some of the strategies that HR professionals are employing to ensure that their hotel operations continue to thrive.