Strategy and Sausages:
A British Strategic Planner in Germany
Saturday, 18 July 2020
One description of the current "coming out of COVID" phase that particularly rings true for me is that we're all teetering on a tightrope between hope and anxiety. The anxiety is a form of constant fear of the unknown, acknowledging that we simply aren't as in control of anything as we once thought we were.
I felt this tension as I booked up my first trip back to the UK recently. Travel and tourism is a category that is arguably the most disrupted by COVID, and also one of the most disrupting to the planet. That brings a double tension into play - should I really be making this trip, not just for my health, but for the health of the planet?
I've had flurries of emails in the last few weeks from airlines, rail companies and hotels. These all take much the same form:
Inspiring the hope: talk of renewal, freedom, reopening. New journeys and destinations. A world waiting to be discovered. Wanderlust. Beckoning pictures of azure waters, golden beaches, midsummer mornings in the far North.
And at the same time, reassurance to calm the anxiety: #WeCare, worry-free travel, safe and comfortable, relax, protection, well-being, flexibility, hygiene, Bring Me Home promise.
I suspect the way we travel will change permanently, as it did after 9/11, and there will be no going back in terms of the new safety measures introduced. But I also wonder if there will be a going back in the way that travel is regarded - instead of "jumping on planes" and "ticking off the bucket-list" I agree with James Bidwell of Springwise who says that travel and tourism will continue to contribute massively to diversity, cultural understanding, education, a global outlook and to contribute to a more harmonious and peaceful world for all. I see a future for travel and tourism which is more conscious, and goes back to a certain degree of exclusivity - that travel becomes a privilege, not an automatic right. And if the excitement and magic of discovery returns, that can only be a good thing. I paid double what I would have done last year for my ferry crossing and don't begrudge the price. I'm hoping it'll all be plain sailing and will see you on the other side!
When I was little, I wanted to be a spy. I got off to a good start, studying Psychology at Trinity College, Cambridge but somehow got side-tracked into the wonderful world of advertising and marketing.
My children's books: