On a flying visit from Bangkok, graduate General Manager Benjamin Krieg says he genuinely enjoys returning to ICHM and interacting with students.
Graduate Benjamin Krieg was in Australia for a few days in early April, principally Sydney but with a brief stopover in Melbourne, to make sales calls for his property.
As he says: ‘an Australian selling a Thai hotel to Australians’.
Despite a packed schedule, Benjamin took time out to fly to Adelaide and to ICHM on 5 April, to speak to lecturers and students.
‘I genuinely enjoy talking to lecturers and interacting with students to get an idea of what they are thinking.
Benjamin is General Manager at Novotel Bangkok Sukhumvit 20 and he has area responsibility for seven other properties. The 244 - room Novotel Bangkok Sukhumvit 20 is the largest conferencing Novotel in Bangkok, with nine conference rooms, a Junior Ballroom and Grand Ballroom.
He says the opportunities in Asia right now are massive, making it a dynamic place to live and work.
Bangkok continually ranks as the most popular city for international tourists, hosting 21.98 million international visitors in 2018, ahead of London (20.42 million) and Paris (17.95 million).
That being said, Benjamin said it’s exciting being back in Australia and seeing the level of development going on here.
AccorHotels is gearing for growth internationally: by 2020 the group is set to open a new property somewhere in the world every 24 hours, with China and India particularly fast growing outbound markets.
Benjamin took up his position at Novotel Bangkok Sukhumvit 20 as preopening General Manager in October 2015 for the opening in June 2016. He was previously General Manager at Radisson Suites Bangkok Sukhumvit, and prior to that he worked for Accor in Australia for 10 years
At ICHM from 1997 - 2000, Benjamin’s industry placements were at Ayers Rock Resort and Wirinna Cove Resort. In 2008 he was appointed General Manager of Ibis Sydney King Street Wharf and in 2010 General Manager at Mercure Geelong.
Benjamin says even as a student he aspired to the role of General Manager and he quickly aligned his career path to midscale and economy hotels to achieve that ambition.
‘ICHM gave me the foundation of knowledge and skills that got me to where I am today, managing eight hotels in Thailand.
‘This is not a nine-to-five job and there are never enough hours in the day, making time management the biggest challenge, especially down time’, he says.
Benjamin’s advice: ‘Consider small-to-medium properties in an international hotel group, as there is potential to round out your skill set and fast track to middle management. And a graduate management program is definitely something to strive for.’