With 20 Years of hands-on experience in procurement and materials management, in the hospitality industry in the Indian sub-continent, Sanjay Verghese, Director Material and Food Safety at The Imperial, New Delhi share his views on regular and need-based training in the Hospitality Industry in India.

Professional Journey

I Joined Taj as a Management Trainee way back in 1988 and completed two years of training with them and the identified area for me was materials management and since then I have always been in materials management which is procurement and Inventory control. My journey has taken me through Hotels, Food manufacturers, Airline catering companies and now back to Hotels. Overall it has been a great journey. I have completed 15 years in The Imperial and it is like home to me. It's a great property to be in. As of now, I am the Director of Materials & Food Safety.

Experience attending Cornell Executive Programme in Managing Strategic Growth and Leadership in Emerging Markets

Coming from a procurement background, It was an eye-opener. The kind of depth these professors go into on topics like customer satisfaction and raising the bar beyond the customer expectation is very enlightening. Especially coming from a purchasing background it was a great experience and it opened a completely different paradigm for me.

Importance of training at all levels

Even after 26 years of experience, attending training programmes at various levels shave only made me feel more empowered. I have always been able to take back something that I can implement in my work every time.When I was a management trainee at the Tata management training centre Pune what I learnt I could implement immediately, but what I learnt at Cornell is helping me even after 10 years, because as a senior in the organisation now I am able to see the big picture and contribute to the operations team. So Training at all levels is only helpful.

Managing Complaints and Exceeding Customer Expectations with appropriate need-based Training

For any people industry, there will always be complaints.Let's face it, we can never be perfect, we are not robots. Artificial intelligence as much as it has progressed today, we are still nowhere close to a stage where we can have a complaint free environment. But training is helpful and important to manage these complaints in any people industry. However what is more important is to identify the exact needs of the trainee and that has to be brought out and looked after at every level where supervisors are identifying training needs and accordingly the training are customised and crafted.

Finally, always know that the primary need in the hospitality industry is to understand what our customer expects and to exceed that expectation