There’s a line from Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton that’s been running through my head –or multiple lines, rather, from the musical’s final number about who tells your story and the impact that storyteller has on shaping your legacy.
Maybe it’s the result of the Presidents’ Day holiday this week in the US. Or chalk it up to similar storytelling themes running through my Netflix picks as of late. I will admit to bingeing both the latest Shonda Rhimes mini-series, Inventing Anna and to a long-distance watch of The Tinder Swindler a couple of weekends ago with a friend.
The stories that unfolded over both of these screenings were anything but simple. Filled with hairpin turns and so many dubious characters, you find yourself feeling at times like you’ve lost the plot and are not quite sure whose narrative to fully trust (Sidenote, I’m also accepting nominations for more, shall we say, “classic” picks for future viewing. SITE’s CMO, Pádraic Gilligan, has already made me promise to add Glengarry Glen Ross to my watch list!).
The most likely reason why storytelling is top of mind for me though is almost certainly down to the impressions I had after reviewing findings from a recent SITE Foundation research project that will be shared later this spring.
I was fascinated as I listened to interview after interview conducted as part of this work with high-level corporate leaders at how despite the many differences that exist amongst the industries they work in, the kinds of businesses they manage, and the way they use incentive travel, they still all reached the same conclusion: the benefits of incentive travel are unparalleled in their eyes, from the memories it creates, the results it drives, and the impressions it leaves.
And unlike my recent Netflix queue, where everyone in the stories I’ve been consuming there seem like they’re on different pages or even in entirely different chapters, the story emerging from this leader-driven incentive travel research is straightforward. It’s simple. Most important, it’s incredibly powerful.
But if Hollywood blockbusters have taught us anything, with great power comes great responsibility. Luckily for us, however, we have so many people willing to share this awesome responsibility of telling our story about the power of incentive travel.
There’s our many fantastic SITE members, ready to engage globally and locally. There are the corporate leaders who feature in this research, and their hard-working employees whose efforts are what make these programs standout experiences each year. And, excitingly, there’s plenty of untapped potential in the wider business landscape.
The options are endless, and we’re certainly excited about the plots still to come. For now though, I’ll end with a final thought to mull on. As we collectively consider the next lines of dialogue to be written, who else should be telling this incredible story about incentive travel — and who do we need to make sure is listening, too?