Time waits for no man. LinkedIn kindly reminded me in January that it’s been 15 years since I established JG Collection, social media has its benefits! Speaking of social media I had another déjà vu moment at ILTM Cannes last December together with Steve O’Loughlin when I was recalling some early Facebook images from the show.
I recounted Serge and Sarah Dive wandering into the hotel lobby of The Hempel where I was GM wanting to shoot some images for the brochure of a new show in Cannes. Fast forward to December 2019 and mid-conversation I announced I have some images from the first show in 2006 where I was promptly corrected, ‘John that’s when Facebook began, the show started in 2001!
That said Facebook is practically retro, now it’s all about WhatsApp and WeChat.There is no escaping the impact technology has had on our industry let alone our lives. Whilst many accept its influence, you only need to look to Airbnb, Uber, OTA’s and The Airlines, we find ourselves wrestling with our own dependence. You hear that on average we check our phones at least 58 times per day and on average spend 3 hours and 15 mins a day on our phones. Who here lets the phone dictate their behaviour? Have you tried turning the notifications off or setting the timing so that blue light is dimmed at a certain time to allow you brain to relax?
There is not a wellness article or podcast I know promoting increased use of technology however, I think we can all agree that balance is the key. Digital has changed the way we connect with our guests, creating a twenty-four seven relationship pre and post stay in a world where the guests believe they have many of the travel solutions at their fingertips! It can be enormously helpful and convenient when used meaningfully.
Given what we know and what we, as hoteliers, can influence, what is fundamental within our interactions with clients? What is meaningful and impactful communication? It comes down to quality v’s quantity. For ourselves at JG, human interaction is key and I know it’s a view shared by many partners who, like us, appreciate the value of technology whilst remaining vigilant of balance.
Time my friends passes us all by and whilst we all need to plan for the future, reminisce about the past, let’s also remember our most important time is the present, life is precious enjoy 2020 and what I really hope will be an interesting and meaningful read.