Tourism

You’re only as good as the people you hire: John O’Sullivan

Tourism Australia is one of the world’s best tourism businesses, and repeatedly pulls out all the stops to bring travellers down under.

So we sat down with the Managing Director of the booming business, John O’Sullivan, and asked him to share five big things he’s learned throughout his time in the travel industry.

From recognising just how important each person in a business is, to not being afraid of making mistakes, O’Sullivan proved a fountain of knowledge, although we were disappointed he couldn’t introduce us to our celeb crush and TA ambassador, Chris Hemsworth.

  1. Culture beats strategy

Strategy is important, but it isn’t the reason you get out of bed in the morning, why you believe in the organisation you work for and love the job you do.

Great organisations are able to clearly articulate what they stand for and build a culture that supports that vision.

  1. The importance of great people

Organisations are only as good as the people they hire and develop.

I’ve been fortunate enough to work for some inspiring leaders who have allowed me to develop and being able to do the same for the people I lead has always been a guiding principle as my career has advanced.

  1. Don’t sweat the small stuff

Allow yourself to get too distracted by the minutiae and you’ll never get anything meaningful done. And it’ll drive you crazy.

Always be prepared to be challenged, but think big and keep your eyes on the prize.

  1. The value of simplicity

Confucius was on to something when he said life is really simple, but we insist in making it complicated. Keep it simple, but do it well.

  1. The dangers of complacency

Teams are often at their most vulnerable just after they have won. How many grand final teams go back to back? It’s about continuous improvement.

Winning doesn’t come by accident, it is built upon great planning, execution and hard work. Celebrate your successes, but also make sure you learn from your mistakes.

Bonus round!

On this note of learning from mistakes, why not hear from some of the industry bigwigs on how they failed, and managed to bounce back better than ever at the Travel DAZE conference (click it – we dare you!)

From Wendy Wu to Travellers Choice’s Christian Hunter and Scoot’s GM Jared Simcox, there’s tangible lessons and practical advice to take away into your own agencies and businesses, helping you learn from mistakes and keep growing into beautiful big butterflies.

And hell, while we’re feeling generous – if you’re buying for 2 or more colleagues in one hit, email hannah@travelweekly.com.au and we’ll sort you out with a sneaky discount.

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