Q&A: Talking to Pali Badwal, Managing Director – RCI, India
It is interesting to hear that Pali Badwal is the first-born British Indian of a Punjabi family. He is a qualified accountant and graduated from the Liverpool John Moores University. Pali has over 14 years in travel which includes resort ownership and operations. He joined Hoseasons, a UK rental company in early 2006, and was responsible for new sales distribution channels addressing consumer markets. Pali joined RCI, India in April 2013 as Managing Director, where he is responsible for all exchange, rental and travel for the India region.
A: While ‘vacation ownership’ is a mature business worldwide, I believe India is a key growth market, given the size of the growing middle and upper middle class – there is also a noticeable change in holidaying patterns. Going by experience, we have seen that there are two key considerations for long-term growth.
The first, has to do with better relationships with resort owners and developers, and a clear understanding of their needs. The second, and equally important is about superior service delivery to all our members and partners. I am pleased to say that we will continue to innovate in these areas.
And here’s what I like about the things we’re already doing. The “partner meets” organized by us, bring all stakeholders together on a common platform - with the objective of collaborating and charting growth avenues for the timeshare industry. Initiatives along these lines will give the industry a single perspective to ideate and generate innovative growth solutions.
From a customer, or member perspective, we will continue to recalibrate our customer facing strategies to suit growing needs. This is in line with our ‘Count On Me’ culture, where service comes above all else - providing world class member experience. Very soon you will hear from me on some ‘experientially’ inspired enhancements on our web site - www.RCI.com .
A: Timeshare in India is a growing industry and as I see it, there are no real impediments linked to growth and development. However, opportunities coming our way need to be leveraged with a sense of urgency and timing. If there is a slow-down in converting opportunities, it is possibly because of a lack of visibility. Having said that, I see one big opportunity in the area of Governance and Consistency in the timeshare business. Unfortunately - I bite my tongue when I say this - timeshare still lacks some degree of credibility in India, unlike most parts of the world where timeshare is considered a very convenient and economical way of holidaying. I feel, with the support of AIRDA and its member partners, we are already moving in the right direction. This will in turn encourage more businesses to collaborate in expanding and growing the industry.
A: India has a great service-orientation culture, and this is a big advantage for us at RCI, India. Keeping in mind changing customer needs and demands, we will concentrate on recalibrating our service strategy to keep pace with the needs of our members. In fact I will even go to the extent of saying that we want to exceed it by stretching ourselves further. At RCI, India we have a robust training program for customer service staff at different levels – giving them the exposure and insights to improve awareness levels and skill sets.
A:I would like to refer to our ‘Count on Me’ culture once again – where we live by commitments that place service above everything else. I can see no hesitation whatsoever in appreciating and rewarding effort that focuses on customer satisfaction.
Our processes also encourage constant contact with members – to understand their needs and introduce new products and offers based on feedback. Be it Weeks Enhancement, Split Week holidays, or Cruise Services through special tie-ups - these innovations have given us a positive response in the past, and we do hope to build on this as we grow in the future.
To be continued in our December edition of Q&A.
Welcome to AIRDA's virtual tours gallery - an initiative to provide an enhanced visual experience of our member properties.
What does an AIRDA membership mean to resort owners and developers? AIRDA comes in as your industry partner, conscience keeper and business catalyst - with a wide portfolio of support services.
What does AIRDA mean to holiday seekers and prospective customers? AIRDA comes in to provide information and offer guidelines on making the right timeshare decisions.