With over 16 years of experience in the hospitality business, today Brayant is the Corporate Revenue Management Head of Al Khoory Hotels. In this exclusive interview, he is sharing his view on success in the industry.
Can you give us brief about your position and responsibilities?
I’m handling 7 strategically located Al Khoory hotels in Dubai with over 1200 keys, where I’m responsible to lead the Revenue, Reservation & E-distribution team of very passionate and hard-working individuals.
I got my first taste of the hotel industry as this journey started in 2008 as Central Reservation Agent at Hilton 5-star International Hotel taught me a lot about the industry. Since then, it’s been an amazing ride with some of the renowned hotel brands like Rotana Hotels, Oberoi Hotels, Rixos Hotels, Pullman Hotels, Accor Hotels within the Country.
In Corporate Revenue Management, we call ourselves as “profit managers” of the modern world, we guide the brands to the next level of commercial strategy whereby we look on the most profitability of the company. Responsible for building rates, packages, and hotel sales strategy information in the hotel(s)' inventory systems. The position makes pricing and positioning recommendations for market hotels. Conducts analysis of revenue, profit and demand associated with hotel rooms and space inventory. Position contributes to forecasts, budgets, weekly and daily projections. Position critiques sales strategy effectiveness and prepares historical and future analysis of revenue and profit opportunities.What are the current trends/challenges in your area?
Among the most significant revenue management trends to be aware of is the concept of total revenue management. Within hotels, revenue management is usually focused on pricing, distribution, and marketing of hotel rooms. Yet, with total revenue management, the focus turns to generate as much money as possible from all revenue streams.
New and emerging technology is always going to be one of the most critical revenue management trends to keep pace with. At present, some of the biggest technology trends include the use of hotel management software, the rise of specialist revenue management software, as well as other tools, like upselling software.
Another key revenue management trend to be aware of is the heightened need for cross-departmental collaboration. This has always been a major part of effective revenue management because different departments need to work together to share relevant data and ensure their strategies align with broader business objectives.
Data is at the very heart of any good revenue management strategy and the array of data that is available to hotels is vast, including historical data, current trends, competition data, wider market data, online reviews, data that is in the books, and more. All of this requires careful use of data analytics to achieve the best outcomes.
Historically, revenue management has been hugely reliant on past data to anticipate future demand. However, one of the major revenue management trends you need to know about is the rise of forward-looking market demand data. Essentially, this refers to clear data regarding future levels of demand, typically from competitors.
To reach peak performance, it is essential that you continuously monitor and understand business performance. What are your main revenue streams? What is the revenue per distribution channel? What costs are associated with each distribution channel? What is the current, on the book’s performance per hotel, room type, segment, restaurant, and bar?
Being in one of the busiest cities in the world, with more than 140,000 rooms available in Dubai, revenue management doesn’t sleep, let the system works for you and by having dynamic yet strategic approach in day-to-day operation is the key to maximize the business and yield at maximum revenue. Having a strategy with no culture is like a strategy with no planning.
What does it take to grow to the executive level in your field?
- Learn From The Best
- Create A Roadmap To Success
Lay out a plan so that you can have an objective roadmap to success. All too often, I work with leaders that take this next step to the executive level and feel that they have arrived.
- Know Why You Want What You Want
As you grow into higher levels of leadership, you will still play a dual role of serving those you lead and serving those you follow. Some tips for growing into an executive role: Know why you want what you want. Good leadership always values people. Finding success is a marathon. Base decisions on principles, not optics. And remember, critical thinking and self-awareness are necessary no matter the title.
- Be A Source Of Inspiration
- Understand Your Strengths And Weaknesses
An emerging leader who is preparing to advance to the executive level must have a keen understanding of their leadership characteristics, strengths, weaknesses, and blind spots. Having a willingness to go within and dig deeper to access the highest and best version of themselves will prepare them to successfully transition into a role with more responsibility where the stakes are higher.
Any learning sources/techniques you would recommend?
Young hoteliers need to be tech savvy, keep on developing and continue learning. I am a massive fan in tech. AI (artificial intelligence) will replace the manual work anytime soon, we started to cater generation Z, so we need to define our strategies based on their needs i.e. they are very tech savvy and want to use the latest technologies, and they love personalized interactions and spontaneity.
Working in hospitality teaches you skills you would not learn anywhere else. It teaches about prioritization, swift problem-solving, crystal-clear communication, humility, and how to keep a smile on your face despite having a rough day. Working in hospitality means working with the team to overcome any hurdle.
What would be your next career step?
There's always something more to learn, or something that you can strive to do better than your self yesterday. Identify these areas, incorporate continuous learning as an integral part of your job, and always seek to keep your skills and knowledge updated. I really wanted to grow within the organization and be part of the success of the company. I’m aiming for improving and to helping the brand to be know not only locally but internationally, we are aiming to acquire more hotels in future.
About the Brand
Al Khoory Hotels offers guests the unforgettable experience of hospitality at some of the finest hotels and hotel apartments in Dubai. Al Khoory Hotels are managed by Al Khoory Hospitality, a subdivision of the Al Khoory Group, a conglomerate with diverse interests in different business sectors.
Our hotels are located near important business centres including Business Bay, the Dubai World Trade Center (DWTC), as well as top leisure and entertainment destinations, such as Dubai Mall, Burj Khalifa, Mall of the Emirates, La Mer, Jumeirah beach and Al Fahidi Historical District. Our hotels’ convenient location and ease of access to public transport and the Dubai Metro make them the perfect choice for business travellers as well as vacationers.
Al Khoory Hotel Apartments, Al Barsha, Dubai, Al Khoory Atrium Hotel, Al Khoory Executive Hotel, Al Khoory Inn, Urban Al Khoory Hotels and Al Khoory Sky Garden Hotel. Situated in the prime commercial and tourist locations of Dubai, our hotels provide the perfect experience of hospitality for leisure and business travelers alike.