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How Responsible Hoteliers Can Become Agents of Social Transformation

Eminent personalities discuss how innovative hotels are transforming the industry and how can they become agents of social transformation at BW Responsible Hoteliering Conclave 2016

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In the last session of BW Hotelier event, panelists discussed about how innovative hotels are transforming the industry and how can they become agents of social transformation. The panelists comprised K.B.Kachru, Chairman & Principal Advisor (South Asia), Carlson Rezidor Group; Uttam Dave, Managing Partner, Atmanya Projects; Mandeep Lamba, MD, Hotels & Hospitality Group, JLL; Sonica Malhotra, Joint MD, MBD Group and Neeta Mishra, Executive Editor, BW Sustainability. The session was moderated by Sourish Bhattacharyya, Consulting Editor, BW Hotelier.

K B Kachru, Chairman & Principal Advisor (South Asia), Carlson Rezidor Group, said, “We are looking at the industry from a different perspective altogether, with a certain sense of awareness - right from water conservation to operational resource management but there is no denying that a lot of learning has been coming through the government’s push. However, we must understand the culture is becoming a much questioning, even the customers or investors too are becoming conscious about a hotel service with good practices.”

Uttam Dave, Managing Partner, Atmanya Projects, said, “Awareness about the environment is all about a push or a pull, push in terms the agenda the government wants to achieve, pull in terms of people who are passionate about working for sustainability.”

Mandeep Lamba, MD, Hotels & Hospitality Group, JLL, said, “There are times we just talk about different issues like hunger, child-labour but the other part of it is actually supporting a cause, amidst the fragile ecosystem. Can we mandate it, I don’t think so..it needs to come from within.”

Sonica Malhotra, Joint MD, MBD Group, said, “In terms of social transformation for Hotelier, our perspectives lie around two things majorly. Set first I feel 90 per cent of the planning needs to be done at the construction stage, second to attract and train a lot of quality oriented students across industries, who come from vocational training or hotel management studies.”

Neeta Mishra, Executive Editor, BW Sustainability, “In terms of the SDG India has signed upon with regard to the hotel industry, that is employment, training about safety, raise awareness about sustainable measures and transform people’s behaviour. Hence, the can be big agents of change by associating with international days of gender-equality, conserving energy etc.”

The panel together appreciated each other’s views on the kind of catalyst a responsible hoteliering business can become. It’s not a one-person’s game. The consciousness needs to be developed and the awareness needs to be brought in many key areas- like legal rights, organising public events or skill training.