Interview by Kritika Gupta
Mr. Tamarakolanu Chandra Mohan is designated as the Principal of the Pioneer Institute of Hotel Management (PIHM). His qualifications include BHM & CT, ADST, MBA (HR), M.Phil. (Bus. Admin.). He has expertise in F&B services, Management and Computers.
Mr. Mohan has a total experience of 19 years in the education industry. Before joining as a full-time professor at PIHM, he worked as a part-time educator in F&B service faculty in the institute. In an exclusive interview with collegedunia.com, he talks about the hospitality industry in India and gives some insights about the Institute.
Growth of Hospitality sector in India
India has the world’s largest population of about 500 million in the age bracket of 5-24 years. This fact provides an excellent opportunity for the education sector, especially in the Hospitality division. This sector has emerged as a driving force for developing economies. Therefore, these economies recognized hospitality as a vehicle for their envisaged development and growth. Along its way towards developing new attractions, a similar significance is also given to building the capacity of interested individuals. This is done by initiating educational institutions to offer hospitality, tourism and its related programmes.
The education sector has seen a host of reforms and improved financial outlays in recent years that could transform the country into a knowledge haven. With human resource increasingly gaining significance in the overall development of the country, the development of education infrastructure is expected to remain the key focus in the current decade.
Challenges faced as the Principal of PIHM
As the Principal of PIHM with 19 years of industry and academic experience has helped me a lot when it comes to facing any challenges. According to me, challenges are professed as the best opportunities to enrich the standards of the education system and thereby aids in branding and further accreditations.
Challenges are the perseverance testing points to control students’ behaviour, decision making, scheduling, attendance & discipline, curriculum design, communication & collaborations, recruiting staff, promote personalised learning, improve teaching effectiveness, parent support, and more.
Curriculum is the bloodline for any institution and student
Linking curriculum to industry needs is the biggest ever challenge. The curriculum addresses technical and works readiness skills prioritised by employers. Since our institute is affiliated to Osmania University, the curriculum is reviewed and necessary amends are made in order to impart a student-centric learning approach for better employment. Employers’ input and review of the institution’s curriculum typically produce better skilled, more knowledgeable employees who have a more significant potential to succeed.
Innovating, modifying and updating the curriculum is a vital task for all educational institutions. It is a bloodline for any institution and student’s skill development, and learning outcomes mainly depend on the strength of the curriculum and its proper execution by the institute. We at PIHM ensure to conduct regular activities, workshops, seminars, and maximum industry exposures is given to the budding hoteliers.
Qualities required for an aspiring Hotel Management student
Hotel Management is the most admiring profession among others since its inception. Every year thousands of students across India are passing out with a degree, a diploma from India with flying colours to work within India and overseas as the industry needs and demands are numerous and having a plethora of opportunities.
As an aspirant, basic qualities been observed are a passion for becoming a star, positive body language, keen interest towards career development, discipline, grooming standards and more. Apart from that, they must have a positive attitude towards challenges of situational based tasks, learn to communicate and present effectively, succinctly, and with conviction. Be flexible, take initiative, respect for others will go a long way are important aspects.
Surprises instored for an aspirant
Everything is new and surprising for the student who has started their career in hotel management program at the beginning stage. As it is the abode for skills learning with various technical jargons needed for academic and industry, each student will learn something new each day.
Methods opted to establish a healthy relation with the students
Student’s relationship management is one of the important and toughest tasks amongst others. To establish it, one needs to be acquainted with the needs and demands thereby channelising the institution objectives and goals for the program requisites.
Parent association on regular intervals, student counselling, analysing the gaps to address the issues not only academic but also social, psychological, intellectual perspectives would help to boost the student interest and builds a healthy relationship.
Growth and Placement opportunities offered at PIHM
From the student perspective, high-quality placements in the hotel industry can bring a range of benefits and positive impacts. There is strong evidence to suggest that placements are extremely valuable to students, both in terms of their academic performance and their employability skills.
PIHM has formed a separate cell – Placements & Training Cell. This exclusive cell strives to hold considerable value for the students personal and professional development. It provides the best opportunities to all where ever possible in different sectors like Hotels, Travel, Tourism, Cruise lines, Govt. Sector and allied sectors.
Since its inception, we have got associated with Star Hotels of National and International level. With this, we have also collaborated with reputed consultants to place the inspiring students in India and overseas. Also, we organize various programs for students to work on their skills imbibing, building confidence, conducting mock interviews, inviting guest speakers and distinguished alumni to share valuable insights, seminars, workshops and attending inter and intra-competitions pan India are the few of our USP’s.
Dr. Mohan’s Leadership philosophy and style
To develop an effective leadership philosophy, we first need to look at what we mean by the term, “transformational leader.” No matter whether our title is leader or Principal, we need to be transformational. A transformational leader is one who is capable of leading the organization from one paradigm to the next.
A paradigm is a way we think. The way we do things. The way we approach things. In the hospitality industry, primarily in the education sector today we need a new model. We need to think differently. We need to do things differently. We need a new paradigm. The paradigm of the past will not work in the future. We need to be able to lead us from the paradigm of the past to the paradigm of the future.
Well style will be judged by those who work with me and also anxious to describe the style of leadership to carry but yes is basically lead by example: “I like to lead by example. I lead from the front by taking action, demonstrating what needs to be done, and keeping my team organized to make sure we’re all on the same page and contributing equally.”
Secondly, lead by facilitating communication: “Communication is one of my greatest strengths. I lead by facilitating open communication, and trying to bring out the best in every team member”.
Finally, lead by delegating and making others better: “I’m great at delegating and finding the strengths of other team members. I try to give each person a chance to do what they’re best at and create a team effort that delivers a result that’s greater than the sum of its parts:”. At times the decisions from hierarchy may also influence my style of leadership.
Suggestion to the youth and aspirants
I believe it is easy to suggest someone especially to the student, but hard to make them understand to work for it. We the educational facilitators always bond and bind to advise the students at every point of time as on when situations trigger. My sincere advise to the current youth and the aspiring student is to work with commitment, accept the change and challenges to prosper, have a clear vision, mission and goal of long-term rather than a short term to be accomplished consistently.
A proverb says “There is no shortcut for Success” even for success needs to work for it, as hard work always pays dividends eventually. Also, be technological savvy apart from learned skills and knowledge during the course of the program due to highly demanding multi-tasking jobs seeking by employers. Always they should have a zeal to learn new things, be innovative, be creative and add value to life with great learnings both professionally and for personal foster.