It’s often said that a crisis brings out the best in you. It can also be argued that for some people a crisis brings out the worse in them. If you happen to be the first person in a road accident , what do you do? Would you go out-of-the-way to help the victims or would you choose to look the other way and drive on? This dimension gets more defined if your job is to serve others. Excellence in service comes from the efforts of people who provide that service. In this context, I was delighted to read that the Harvard Business School has made a case study of the truly remarkable and selfless service provided by the staff of the Taj Mahal Hotel in Mumbai. As is well known by now, during the infamous 26/11 terrorist attack on this prestigious hotel, many of them went far and beyond the call of duty. As always in such situations in the best of organisations, the best example came from the top. Karambir Kang, the General Manager of the 107 year old hotel demonstrated immense courage even as his own family died in the tragedy in the very same hotel.
Equally praiseworthy was the response of the staff at all levels, even trainees, who did their very best to put their hotel guests first. In the process a few of them lost their own lives. Very seldom in the history of business in India do we come across such cases. The Taj- with its age-old traditions of hospitality has once again shown evidence that organisational excellence is at the end of it all, only about your people and what they do for your organisation.