You meet a few people who are self motivated and self driven, Priyanka is one such young professional. My association with her is very recent, in fact we connected through the IWH, she also showed keen interest in all activities and was forever ready to chip in wherever required. I found that she is a person with the right mindset, attitude and the drive. When I approached her to share her story for the Rear View Mirror, she was very forthcoming. As a founder of the IWH, its a pleasure to share with you Priyanka’s story of grit and focus.
My remarkable journey from being regarded just a pretty face to someone who speaks serious business.
Coming from a Middle class family with our own financial struggles, difficult situation or criticism was always taught to me, to be taken as an opportunity to achieve higher.
From the very beginning as a child I was always motivated and encouraged to take up what I believed in – and hospitality was my childhood love affair. Having lived in Goa, Pune and Mumbai, exposure to various cultures only boosted my passion to explore, and hospitality was undoubtedly the best platform to achieve that. I have earned my bachelor’s degree in 2014 – International Marketing under Business Studies from South Indian Education Society, Nerul as one of the best institutions in Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra, India. Followed by the very first break with one of the biggest hotel brands in the world – the Marriott group!
I was often asked a question by college mates and friends, why did I choose ‘being a hotelier’ as a career than working in any FMGC firm that would pay me nothing less than 3 times more than any hotel in India, however it was the passion to serve that was rooted deep within and had no excuse to give up. Initially was difficult to get into sales department without knowing about what is hotel as a product and its service operations. Having said that, I had no hotel management degree and no hotel background to support my interest, however JW Marriott Juhu Mumbai, the iconic flagship property for JW Marriott in India had offered me a position as a coordinator in Training and Development to get into the hospitality and letting me find my way into the system.
Being said that, the best company and brand in this industry had not only allowed me to train and develop others, but also developed my personality as a hardcore hotelier.
Struggles of living in Mumbai were there, travelling in local trains gushed with hundreds of people travelling 2 hours daily to just reach the hotel for work every morning, followed by work and head back with another 2 hours journey with nothing less than 13-14 hours calculated in total. But the experience was life changing. JW Marriott had provided me a place in the industry and now it was my turn to grow further.
Moved to ITC Fortune Group, where my interest into Sales & Marketing was considered and trusted with by the General Manager of the property Mr. Chetan Bhatnagar: Fortune Select Exotica Navi Mumbai. Entitled with responsibility for MICE business including rooms and banquet spaces, he believed in my passion when applied for this role without a doubt; considering my training background. This is has been my foundation for Sales & Marketing with high exposure into the corporate segment. I was given the opportunity to structure the MICE brochure for Fortune Group of Hotels, India; which was accepted and appreciated by the head office representatives. This motivation which was initiated by Mr. Bhatnagar and continued by the other industry colleagues kept the spark growing into the next major step I took towards my career- Fushifaru Maldives !
Fushifaru Maldives, this beautiful 5 star luxury property in the Maldives had accepted my application for looking after their Sales & Marketing through LinkedIn. Culture, exposure, experience was best offered along with the sense of responsibility for a new brand. General Manager Mr. Ahmed Siaar and Resort Manager Mr. Abdulla Malaaz, had offered me the life changing opportunity and support that has gotten me to where I am today, on a global platform. With such huge sense of responsibility however entrusted with the passion of being a successful hotelier, Mr. Siaar has been the motivating force regardless the difficulties has encouraged me to keep my head always held high with pride and generosity at the very same time. With exposures at various trade conference and international visits for business today they have entrusted this 26 year old with international markets to nourish.
Living an island life but undertaking global responsibility in today’s date, from the girl who travelled hours just to get to work – it has been a journey I’d take pride in for being able to grow with the support of my people at various stages.
For the success I hold today, it was possible with the support and encouragement of mentors at different stages of my career that brought me from being a Business graduate – to a successful hotelier. That’s exactly what I try to give back to the society, empowerment to enter hospitality as a career and to maintain the belief in the profession you hold.
Today this 26 year old is known globally for talking about figures and revenue, it wasn’t easy getting here, because of investing money to come aboard, meeting needs back home but the statement “ you get business because you are pretty “ discounts all the hard work. One gets business because one works hard for it.
Today, I actively promote “hospitality career” also I would love to develop and nourish the community.
Letting others also experience the remarkable journey that I have had by such platforms like IWH which is set up to motivate and empower self and others.
Thanking IHW and Ms. Laxmi Todiwan for promoting and encouraging this 3 year journey, it is empowering to me and reaching out to others the young professionals to achieve their goals and dreams that they have set for themselves. Telling them that nothing is impossible.