Originating from a small village of Rajasthan, his professional journey is nothing less than an adventure for Mukesh Gothwal, Multi Property Manager Airport Services & Concierge. Currently based in Jaipur, the heart of Rajasthan, Mukesh started his career with the Oberoi Group in 2008. With an indomitable spirit to grow in the hospitality and service industry, he then joined Jaipur Marriott in August 2011 as an airport representative. From there, with his sheer will and hard work he ascended the stairs of success and became the Multi Property Assistant Manager, Airport Services & Concierge in the year 2018. In the Jaipur Marriott, he is in charge of concierge and provides exceptional service to guests. Mukesh is an active member of prestigious Les Clef d’Or and bears the Golden Keys on his lapel.
The Les Clef d’Or is an international association, where extra ordinary services are provided to guests with a motto of ‘service through friendship’. Mukesh is fond of bike riding and loves to go for long rides on his Royal Enfield. He is a polished artisan and showcases his talent through the creation of fine woodcraft.
How has the pandemic changed the way you work?
The pandemic has brought a wide paradigm shift in the way we work. With time, we have become more flexible towards the nature of our work. With Covid safety protocols becoming the new normal, it is always on my mind to provide exceptional services to our guests while maintaining proper hygiene. Along with it, the need of the hour is the emotional well-being of my team which has now become my utmost priority.
What are the most memorable responses to your work so far?
As a professional in the hospitality industry, we have always provided extended services to our guests and the responses received for it have always been memorable. This enables us to further elevate our services and provide warm hospitality to our guests like always.
To name one of my most memorable responses, it was when I received an appreciation from a guest after I found and handed over his lost passport. When I was informed that the guest had lost his passport, I helped him to retrieve it within the next 3-4 hours. The guest was overwhelmed with happiness and appreciated my efforts.
Was a career in hospitality/airport management something you always dreamt of? What is your advice to aspiring airport managers?
Hospitality industry has been my dream since childhood. Being born and brought up in Rajasthan, the essence of ‘Padharo mahare des’ has been inculcated within me. Rajasthan’s rich culture and tradition of hospitality encouraged me to contribute to this industry. Being an airport manager, I am the first point of contact and a representative of Marriott Hotels & Resorts Jaipur, to my guests which is an honor to me. The opportunity to meet and interact with people from diverse backgrounds and businesses is what i look forward to day after day. For all aspiring airport managers, I would advise them to keep guests’ satisfaction as paramount. With a mindset to serve our guests, we will never go out of style.
At work, which is your most challenging activity?
During COVID times, it became quite challenging for us to assist our guests, in accordance with the airport security protocols. As an airport manager, I have made this a part of my duty to overcome these day-to-day challenges and provide the best possible services to our esteemed guests, while taking all the safety measures.
What are the attributes of an efficient airport manager?
For me, guests are my family and I always aspire to exceed their expectations while on duty. According to me, an efficient airport manager is an amalgamation of the following:
Communication Skills: Effective communication plays a vital role to develop relationships with our guests and to manage the critical situations. Clear and concise communication is an essential skill for an airport manager to serve their guests with the best services.
People connect: The ability to connect with people at their mental level is something which is indispensable for me as an airport manager. To be able to understand and anticipate their service requirements along with delivering them on time is an integral part of our business.
Liaison with the key stakeholders: This is important for us to make our functionality smooth. During our service hours, we encounter several situations where we would have to rely on people from different dimensions to help serve our guests. An effective liaison makes it possible for us to go beyond the horizon and provide efficient services in no time.
Time Management: Punctuality and effective time management is non-negotiable to me personally. From picking up guests on time from airport to anticipating and delivering their needs, I believe for an efficient service, time management plays a key attribute.
2020 was a challenging year for the hospitality industry. In your opinion, how will travel trends change in the 2nd half of 2021?
The pandemic has changed people’s approach towards traveling. With the world adjusting to the new normal, people will and have become vigilant in taking initiatives to curb the spread of COVID-19 while traveling such as taking all the safety measures including hygiene management and social distancing. According to me, we could see a trend where people will embark on more experiential staycations which would further increase possibilities for the hospitality industry.
When are you happiest?
I am a family man. Being a cordial person, I consider my work as my family. Whenever I am achieving my service goals, I feel the happiest. Apart from this, time with family is something I always look forward to.
Which is your favorite Indian city?
The Pink City, Jaipur is my favourite Indian city. Being from Jaipur, I had started helping tourists as a tour guide during my scholar life. Since then I find myself inspired with the rich cultural heritage and grandeur of Jaipur. Pink city is not only my home but is my dream city as well.
Where do you see yourself after 5 years in terms of your career?
I believe to grow in life, one has to expand their horizons and for that very reason diversifying my current portfolio is what I am interested in. In the next few years of my professional career with Marriott International, I see myself taking on challenging and exciting roles and expanding my portfolio to imbibe all the Rajasthan Marriott hotels into it. In the coming future, I aspire to represent Rajasthan Marriott Hotels at an international level.