Emerging Opportunities In Hospitality Industry

In an email interview, Mr. Michel Rochat, CEO, EHL Group speaks to BW Education

Michel Rochat, CEO, EHL Group

Q. Hotel management promises a platter of career choices. What are the new job opportunities that the industry will witness in the next 5 years?

To be accurate, we should be referring to Hospitality management, because it isn’t only about hotels, it’s about every single industry whose most important aspect is the customer experience, such as luxury, banking, consulting, event management and many others. Understanding the intricacies of customer satisfaction, acquiring the finesse and foresight to remain always one step ahead of each trend, each innovation and integrating sharp business skills into an ever-changing landscape. This is what our students are groomed to become managers for. The industry is growing faster than the global economy and we will be seeing new markets open up, new business models and a need for qualified talent to fill the many new job opportunities within the next five years. We are predicting a drop in repetitive tasks that will be taken over by machines (this will start in countries where labor is the most expensive), and an increase in versatile project management. AI will give us new tools to push the envelope in terms of customizing the client experience. We can, therefore, imagine that “the manager’s role will be to manage a complex ensemble of human and artificial intelligence to solve problems that will become increasingly complex”. Today more than ever, the hospitality industry is one that needs its leaders to be innovative, adaptable, agile and foreseeing. This is exactly why entrepreneurship and hospitality management are inevitably intertwined because these are precisely the skills needed to drive an entrepreneurial project to success. 

Q. What is it about Switzerland that grooms the best professionals in hospitality and why should Indian students opt for this country when it comes to higher studies?

Switzerland has a unique education style deeply rooted in its DNA. Theory and practice are regarded as equally important and this allows our students to be ready to hit the ground running as soon as they graduate. EHL is the world’s first ever hospitality management school. It was born at a time where Switzerland was becoming the preferred destination of most of Europe’s aristocracy. This gave a strong impulse to local hotels to professionalize the activity and instore a real culture of hospitality. Additionally to this unique heritage, Switzerland offers a unique blend of political stability, safety, comfort and, at the heart of Europe, it is ideally located, allowing you to easily experience many other locations such as London, Paris, Milan, Barcelona or Munich in less than two hours. As for EHL, it is the Hospitality management university that offers the world’s strongest alumni network and is regularly ranked among the two best schools in the world and the only Swiss hospitality management school to be recognized by the federal government. Also, with 115 different nationalities on campus, no other hospitality management university offers such a multicultural experience.

Q. EHL’s programmes are known as one of the best in the world as it blends access to world-class faculty and a prestigious industry network. Please explain how do your students create the best hospitality networks around the world?

EHL isn’t simply a physical location where you come to study. It is an experience. Through hardships, discoveries, mind-opening interactions with professors and world-renowned companies, our students grow a sense of pride and belonging to their new community. This feeling sticks with them throughout their career and they become active promoters and the best possible ambassadors of our values and our teachings. They take great pleasure in helping each other out, welcoming current EHL interns into their companies or just opening doors for one another. This is truly priceless. There are also over 400 networking and professional events for alumni throughout the year. For more details, students can log on to

Q. What are the trends that dominate conversations in the hospitality industry? What scope do you think is there in the Hospitality industry for the Indian students after getting a degree from a global institute like EHL?

There are increasing opportunities to work in the hospitality industry as this sector is growingopportunitiesbut in order for new destinations to attract the best talent, they will need to create attractive work environments and adequate remuneration.  However, the opportunity to start a business is huge in India and Government also encourage entrepreneurs or new start-ups, which we have a growing number of, coming out of EHL.  Many students, after getting a degree abroad, like to start their own business or work abroad for a couple of years, get the experience and go back to their country at a higher managerial position.

Q. What plans do you have for EHL in the near future?

We have entered a phase of international expansion that is intended to support the growing need for top-tier hospitality managers around the world, especially in Asia. We are currently working on opening an EHL campus in Singapore that will offer the exact same hospitality management degree, with an extra Asian flavor. We are also launching an Innovation Village adjacent to the Lausanne campus that will be a convergence point for scholars, entrepreneurs and industry actors to explore the future of education and the future of hospitality.

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