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Sunjae Sharma’s blueprint for progress

Today’s Traveller Know Your Leader motivational initiative invites accomplished Sunjae Sharma, Vice President & Country Head – India, Hyatt Hotels Corporation to share his experiences, his journey, and some unknown facts about him that keep him going.

This in turn will motivate teams to delve into themselves and bring out their lesser-known selves.

Even though a picture is worth a thousand words, sometimes the right words are just what you need to make it through the day, to inspire your team or to change your perspective.

Sunjae Sharma

Today’s Traveller: How do you keep up your team’s morale?

Sunjae Sharma: I believe that propagating a culture of care and understanding in the workplace goes a long way in motivating people and enabling them to become the best version of themselves.

It’s important to communicate with people and not limit oneself to a structured strait-laced approach. My practice is to pick up the phone and speak directly to team members and they’re encouraged to do the same. This allows for constant communication and a level of comfort from both sides, that we know we can approach each other whenever required.

It’s also important for the team to see that all team members, senior or junior and their contemporaries are contributing to the common goal of giving our best to our guests, owners and colleagues. Transparency, team spirit and open channels of communication help build morale.

Today’s Traveller: A major milestone which shaped you as a Leader

Sunjae Sharma: In a career of over three decades, there have been many such milestones. Difficult to pinpoint just one.

Today’s Traveller: How do you approach a challenge?

Sunjae Sharma: I see challenges as opportunities and not failures. It is a mindset that I encourage amongst my colleagues as well. Nothing worthwhile comes easy and naysayers are always out in full force. One can either choose to dwell on failures—or learn from them or keep evolving. I tend to lean towards the latter.

Today’s Traveller: What is that one thing that you have learnt during Covid-19 Pandemic?

Sunjae Sharma: That all adversities can translate into opportunities. 

On a personal level, I realised that I needed to spend more time with my family and even on myself. We are constantly running from pillar to post and often don’t take the time out to just sit with each other and share much needed moments together. This pandemic has allowed me much needed time with loved ones and to concentrate on my own health and well-being. 

On the professional front, we learnt to reimagine and re-energise how our hotels function. We were able to focus on rolling out enhanced digital amenities which will allow guests to socially distance according to their preferences – provide them more control over how they connect with hotel management.

Both personally and professionally, the lesson was to rethink, reimagine and ultimately rejuvenate.

Today’s Traveller: What is that one thing that you cannot miss?

Sunjae Sharma: I love the music of the Beatles and I’ve been able to spend even more time listening to my album collection. 

Today’s Traveller: Which non-professional activities give you energy and satisfaction?

Sunjae Sharma: There are few things as mentally invigorating and relaxing as reading a good book. The books which have stayed with me are Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl about his time and experiences while incarcerated in a Nazi concentration camp, and A Stone For Danny Fischer.

Read More: Corporate Connect