Travel: Wisdom, Technology and Insight

Time to reflect on a year two thirds done, months of change and innovation ahead and a big 2017 in the making.

Companies and people grow. Some come and some go.  New ideas need space to take root, whether it be a person leaving or simply making the space to question why you do what you do.

We are in the midst of healthy, robust debate around our next cycle of improvements around process, systems, attitudes,beliefs, suppliers and features. It’s necessary to evolve across all of these factors as the employee and associate count is measurable in hundreds.

It’s a classic case of technology, wisdom and insight intersecting.

You never change things by fighting the existing reality.
To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
― R. Buckminster Fuller

You can imagine the conversations taking place, not just in our company but others going through incremental growth and change. “We need to keep trying new things to stay ahead” answered with “It ain’t broke….” or “We have always said….” and “management is management for a reason.”

We just asked our staff, without us being around, to tell us what they thought. Management don’t always have the best ideas.

How do you go about recruiting ideas?  Travel agents cannot afford the complacency of “we don’t need new ideas”.

The only way to stay ahead, to have relative growth, is to change and evolve. You need to challenge where you are coming from, regularly.  Are the management team or key decision makers ideas alone enough to keep driving to stay relevant? When is wisdom trumped by technical knowledge or insight?

If you said 3 years ago “I was playing pokemon go  in the back of an Uber” people would assume your insanity.

Those with wisdom and experience, the taxi industry, stopped changing and evolving.  How much is a taxi license worth? Lots of cabbies said they were not concerned with Uber.  Kodak once upon a time ignored digital camera’s.

Ideas that worked until now may not work next month, never mind next year. In days of technology and disruption, ideas derived from conventional wisdom need challenging daily. Time to leave some wisdom and experience baggage at the door.

 It costs NOTHING to investigate a new idea but the journey of evaluation WILL generate ideas, enthusiasm, energy and purpose.

“Be a surfer. Watch the ocean. Figure out where the big waves are breaking and adjust accordingly.”
― 37 Signals

Pre mortgage pre child pre self employment  I surfed lots.  I learned not just about waves, but purity of thought and planning.  When you are up to 500 metres offshore and the swell is rolling, there is nothing else to think about.

On a good day it wasn’t just a scramble for the next wave, but understanding what would happen if I missed it, made it, was the next one better, was my position right, my points of reference to the beach still relevant?

Same wave, same beach but if I drifted 200 metres with the rip and a ride of a lifetime became bleeding hands from a collision with a reef.

I had the skills, the experience, but as the perspectives shifted relative to the goals, the execution could suffer.

With so much choice, innovation and disruption going on in the travel industry, its easy to forget wisdom and favour technology, but people still matter. Hence the enduring travel agent.

But insight is in finding that balance of wisdom and experience delivered through insightful technology.

Therein lies our challenge in growing all of our business.




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