Midweek Catch-up with Discova’s Peter Christiansen

Midweek Catch-up with Discova’s Peter Christiansen

This week we got up close and personal with Discova’s director of operations. Discover (get it?) what makes him tick here.

What’s your main goal for this year?

Our main goal is to solidify and strengthen our business operations. After the obstacles faced in the last two years, during which most destinations have had next to no business, it is now time to ensure a seamless experience for travellers once again.

Looking back over the past two years, I am grateful we chose to keep a larger workforce and to maintain normal work weeks. In having kept key staff, we are now able to onboard and train new staff quickly and efficiently, without compromising our service levels for our loyal partners who have waited patiently to send us their customers once again.

What’s your favourite thing about working in the travel industry?

Having gone through the pandemic, the most important thing I learned was that, as a DMC, we need to get even more involved in supporting our communities. This part of our work is really the most fulfilling.

A perfect example is how our involvement in Manggis has grown from a simple “Farm-to-Table” project to something so much more. We are now moving many of our activities to the area. It is a model we want to expand in our other destinations, including our three Americas countries (soon to be five).

How do you like to spend your free time?

Spending time on the beach, with family. But also looking for remote, locally-owned accommodation to stay in, and going back to what travel should be all about – authenticity.

Have you managed to do any travelling since restrictions began to ease (domestic or international)?

Yes, I most recently travelled to Thailand, Singapore, and Mexico. Mexico was especially exciting. That was really about me getting an in-person overview of Discova operations in the region in preparation for my new role [as Director of Operations].

What’s your favourite travel company, besides the one you work for?

I enjoy working with TourCompass. Like us, they really capitalise on what they do best. We are both able to adapt and be flexible to changing policies and travel trends.

If you could invite three famous guests (dead or alive) to a dinner party, who would you choose?

Simon Sinek: I’m inspired by the way he breaks down leadership and talks about leadership as human connections – basic and simple.

Lewis Hamilton: Two feet on the ground, and able to battle through personal and work-related crises.

Jacinda Ardern: I admire her leadership style. She stays connected and keeps her private life just that, private – even after becoming New Zealand’s Prime Minister.

What’s something positive you’ve witnessed or experienced since the global pandemic hit?

The strength people have to battle through crises, their adaptability, and the support people provide for each other.

What’s your advice for others in the travel industry on coping with the global pandemic?

Stay positive and trust in your path.

What book and/or TV show can you not get enough of lately?

‘Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action’ by Simon Sinek.

Do you have any travel goals for 2022?

Yes, to travel with my family to our must-see list – Mexico, Costa Rica, and Cuba.

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