MS Ritu Grover, Founder & CEO at TGH Lifestyle Services Pvt Ltd. talks on her entrepreneurial journey with Team Optimist. Excerpts.
1. How did you conceive the whole idea of TGH Lifestyle Services Pvt. Ltd? What motivated you to proceed in this specific sector?
I was working as an interior designer and had taken up a project at an MNC when I realised that the employees were imbalancing their work and personal life. I was myself in the same boat having no time left for myself and my family. We had bills to pay and family to spend time with but instead we were sitting in office till late in the evenings, working on our presentations and Excel sheets. That’s when it struck me. A service partner to take care of their needs – that’s what they needed. And that’s precisely when TGH was started. Once I had the idea, it took some time to conceptualise how we wanted everything to be. A team was formed. Slowly and gradually we got our first few clients and the rest is history!
2. The concept of a concierge is new in India. How did you come across this? What were your initial days in the concierge industry?
With the advent of corporate houses in India in 1995, we realised that the new work culture was entirely different from the traditional work culture that existed. Employees had to travel long distances to reach their offices and with pressures and timelines, the working professional was not able to maintain a balance between his personal and professional life. Being in the same boat and not having enough time to deposit my bills and attend to other personal requirements, I realised starting TGH would help almost everyone who wants to maintain a good work-life balance.
Our first business vertical was concierge services and as we added to our list of clients, we listened and treated every interaction as an opportunity to create future business opportunities like digital concierge, automated mailrooms, corporate gifting, event management, third party staffing, rewards and recognition, facility management etc.
3. What is your take on the facility management industry in India?
When it initially started as an industry, not many people were aware of it. However, with the emphasis of corporates on work-life balance, facility management has come in the limelight and more and more people are understanding what it actually is.
I do believe that even though we’ve come a long way, there still is more to be done, in terms of professionalism, training, advancement, transparency, etc.
4. Discipline is often considered to be key in attaining success as an entrepreneur. Did your Army background help you in imbibing discipline in your work ethic?
Definitely, the army background has played a major role in shaping who I am as a person and my work ethic today. Thanks to this, I travelled the length and breadth of the country with my father and was exposed to many cultures. Therefore I love the hiring process because I get to meet people from all over the nation. Moreover, if you ever visit our office you’ll see how everything is neatly stacked in pigeon holes and not a sheet of paper is appreciated out of its place. It’s all discipline and dedication that keeps us at the top of the game.
5. What has been your experience working as an entrepreneur in the facility management industry in India? What are your plans in the next few years?
This industry is one of the most welcoming and warm industries to work in, in my opinion. That wasn’t the case when facility management was still in its nascent stages. I have had the opportunity to meet some of the best minds, not just in the country but throughout the world. I got to form an amazing team of exceptionally hardworking people, and needless to say, we have worked with some of the finest corporate clients. Overall, it’s been a great journey.
TGH Lifestyle Services Pvt. Ltd. is growing exponentially and we plan on diversifying internationally with offices in Sydney, London and Singapore in the coming years. Wish us luck!
6. What is your mantra for increasing work efficiency in India’s existing corporate culture? What reforms do you suggest for better productivity?
Team building activities have always been integral at TGH. There is increased transparency between various departments in order to ensure equality is maintained. Moreover, ‘acknowledgement’ is especially focused on. If an employee does outstanding work, he/she is recognized for the same. A collaborative environment has been created and each new employee is placed under a senior whom we call ‘mentor’. These mentors are always there to support and help new employees. Delegation of work is appreciated as that always help in creating the second line of leaders and regular feedback is always given in a very positive way to bring out the best in every employee.