By Afra Jin/HelloSanya
He is not only a national hotel manager tutor, but he is also a senior economist. In an effort to make a better contribution to the hotel industry, he studied in Japan and the US. He has successfully served as general manager of multiple international five-star hotels and domestic hotels. He is so passionate about his career that he came back to work after retirement. He is a workaholic and he loves the hospitality industry. Currently, he is the General Manager of the Haitang Bay Mangrove Resort Hotel. His name is Mr. Meng Zunlin.
“I completed my contract with the Army in 1980. After that, I chose to do financial work for a hotel”, Mr. Meng Zunlin told us. When he was younger, his character wasn't suitable for a stable job. After struggling to choose what he wanted to do, he made a decision to expand his potential and try something a little different. He moved over to the hotel department of operations. In hindsight, he still appreciates his old mentors at the time. Thanks to their advanced management concepts, he was able to get an overall perspective of hotel management through cross-training, something that would become particularly important later in his management career. The experience of cross-training in the sales department helped him to get a better understanding of hotel operations.
Experience of Studying Abroad
In 1992 Mr. Meng Zunlin seized the opportunity to attend a school in Japan. This was another important turning point in his career.
“During my studies abroad, to experience the hotel service firsthand, I stayed at hotels at my own expense.” Mr. Meng Zunlin said. Many saw this as a waste of money as they did not understand why he would choose to stay at hotels but he insisted that this practice would allow for better understanding of the industry.
He said his experience abroad gave him a greater awareness of cultural differences in the hotel industry. “As the best representative of the hotel industry, we should learn more from Japanese hotel service spirit. We shouldn't regard hotel service as a passive process but as a real profession.”
Mr. Meng Zunlin told us of an event that took place in the late 1990s. He once accompanied a group of junior students to Japan for a study tour. Because of the unusually hot weather, many of the students got heatstroke. He asked for help from the hotel. There were ice machines on each floor but the hotel had still prepared ice buckets filled with ice cubes and cold towels in rooms before their arrival. The next day when they were ready to leave, the general manager of the hotel waited for them at the door, asked if they were satisfied with the hotel service and asked how the students were doing.
In 1994 he went to America to study for half a year. This experience constructed an increased awareness of hotel service and this experience had a profound influence on his future career.
New Career Begins at 60
“The Mangrove Group had impressed me a lot with their excellent management, especially the Yalong Bay Mangrove Resort Hotel.” Said Mr. Meng Zunlin. After retiring in April, the Mangrove Group invited him to join them several times and after much deliberation, a decision was made—he joined the Haitang Bay Mangrove Resort Hotel.
Within three months of taking the position of GM, he had a good understanding of the other rival hotels. “Most hotels in Haitang Bay are international brands. We are one of the few Chinese hotel brands. We will learn to make use of our own advantages as well as learn from others.”
As for the future development plan of the hotel, Mr. Men Zunlin said “Hainan is an international tourist island, and it will be constructed into an international tourist consumption center in the future. To meet the needs of the tourism industry, hotels have to improve the standard of their service and optimize their product mix. The Haitang Bay Mangrove Resort Hotel will keep on making contributions to the construction of the Hainan FTZ with Chinese characteristics. As the hotel industry developments, Mr. Men Zunlin is looking forward to meeting and welcoming more foreigners to the Haitang Bay Mangrove Resort Hotel.
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