Chris Niuh, General Manager, Berjaya Langkawi Resort – Malaysia
LANGKAWI, MARCH 2015 – A 'successful management plan' for the hospitality industry requires an entire set of disciplines ranging from knowledge of the property, keeping up with changing trends, maintaining service standards and many other aspects which represents a challenge in and of itself. Perhaps the most critical items on the list are to have a vision, a clearly defined set of goals and an avidly positive mindset.
Acknowledging that a vision cannot be achieved unless it percolates down to every single person in the organisation, Chris Niuh, General Manager of Berjaya Langkawi Resort, depends on his strong service leadership skills which allow for the transfer of the success plan to each unit manager under his purview to ensure that the day-to-day operations of each function are carried out smoothly while upholding the right standards and methods of service throughout the entire experience for guests at the resort.
“A task like keeping this place up and running and making sure guests enjoy their time here requires every department coming together and playing their part efficiently. To keep my team cohesive, I try to be as fair as possible to everyone and make certain that I am consistent in my approaches when managing all the various sections. I make it a point to let all my associates know where I stand and where I’m coming from apart from being clear about the expectations of the organisation,” said Chris while explaining the transparent and hands-on methods he practices.
When asked what it is about the industry that inspires him the most, the General Manager replied good-naturedly, “It’s the people. You have your moments of feeling proud of what you do, but they come less from building things and more from meeting guests in the lobby when they talk about their experience or from helping solve a problem for someone. It’s about the joy that comes from seeing others experience the resort. It’s about the smile on the face of happy guests – that is where you can really enjoy it. In the hospitality business, we get joy from other’s satisfaction – it’s why we do what we do.”
Set amidst a natural wonderland of lush green tropical rainforest yet fringed with a splendid stretch of white-sand beach and azure waters, Berjaya Langkawi Resort is situated in a unique location that, while close to it all, it is far enough away to escape. “It’s the best of both worlds. Most of our guestrooms offer amazing views. And with the array of dining, recreation and entertainment options available here, our resort is a destination within itself. The atmosphere here is tranquil and elegant yet not stiff,” Chris added.
Leveraging on the strengths of the property and keeping abreast with travel trends, Chris utilises this understanding to appease the various demands of clientele and makes it a point to cater to their every beck and call the best he can.
“In our case, the guiding principle is and will remain that the guest always comes first. This is not a slogan but the driving force of our entire operation – from the way we serve at table to the way we administer, from the way we deal with complaints to how we make our rooms welcoming. Every decision the management takes is always seen from its client impact assessment and is always focused on enhancing the client’s experience and improving on our value for money offer,” he enthused.
Strongly believing in a corporate and social responsibility to care for the environment and give back to the broader community in which it operates through volunteerism, continuous support and engagement, Chris is committed to inculcate the spirit of conserving the natural environment and community service among the resort’s personnel via various community based initiatives.
As one of the key personnel actively involved in driving the recent inauguration of the Mangrove 4 Life (M4L) campaign which planted almost 500 young mangrove saplings and raised awareness on the importance of mangrove forests, the General Manager is especially passionate about doing his bit for the environment and is taking further steps to offer a three-day-two-night package that will allow resort guests to be involved in the campaign’s mangrove planting and awareness activities annually.
“It is satisfying to be part of projects like this, knowing that you are able to contribute to the environment in a way especially when environmental deterioration is eminent, and being able to extend the chance for others to do so too,” the General Manager mentioned as he affirmed his passion.
As it is of utmost importance that guests are able to enjoy themselves with absolute confidence and complete satisfaction, the team at Berjaya Langkawi Resort, led by Chris is ever willing to go that extra mile to ensure a delightful stay for all. “The core of our brand is to offer guests an exceptional stay enhanced by graciously warm yet efficient and consistent service. This all goes back to the people we have and our leadership, and their understanding of our core values and standards. If you have those in place, you can’t go wrong,” he said as he assured that his door is always open, regardless for staff or for guests.