Phil Jordan, Scenic’s Product Delivery Manager talks about how he got started in the industry and why his dad is his biggest mentor.
1. How long have you been in the industry?
10 years. I started in 2005 as a Tour Leader in Vietnam with Travel Indochina.
2. What is one of your most amazing travel experience?
Probably Laos – I lived there for three years and a lot of Laos feels like a place time forgot.
I used to travel by motorbike when the roads and maps were not so reliable, especially in the rural areas. Some nights were spent sleeping in rice paddies next to the bike with an empty fuel tank. While at the time they were more annoying and scary than ‘amazing’ it’s probably what I will end up telling my kids about and I’ll never forget those rides through what I think is some the world’s most beautiful scenery.
3. What’s the weirdest job you’ve ever done?
I worked one university break as a gaming supervisor in Airlie Beach. Tuesday nights was jelly wrestling night in the adjoining club. Occasionally I had to ‘referee’ the matches…that was a pretty weird job, but being the good employee I never complained.
4. First ever country you travelled to?
Zimbabwe 1998 – Let’s just say it was eye opening and leave it at that.
5. Wishlist of places yet to visit?
Like everyone’s it is never ending and constantly changing based on an unlimited amount of factors. If I had to pick a top 5 today I would say: The States, Iceland, Cuba, Kazakhstan and the longer I’m with Scenic the more I want to kick back on one of their luxury Europe river cruises, but I’ll settle for another destination if I have do.
6. Who was your biggest mentor growing up?
It’s a clichéd answer but definitely family and friends. Mum travelled a lot, Dad grew up in Nairobi for most of his childhood. My grandfather lived a very interesting life in East Africa which he later turned into an autobiography. Growing up surrounded by such stories I think a life in travel was somewhat preordained, despite my best efforts.
7. How has working in travel changed you?
You need to become adaptable to change and ready for anything. If you think you know what the day ahead holds – you’re wrong. Nowhere is that more true than my current role with Scenic. It also opens you’re eyes to the weird and wonderful variety of people living in this world, some who are truly inspiring.
8. What’s your biggest life achievement to date?
My daughter (Willow) – 2 years old and already a legend.
9. What’s one in-flight travel tip?
Comfortable clothes and earphones – so simple but so necessary. Plus that little attachment so you don’t have to use the dodgy plane headphones when watching films or listening to that airlines version of “what’s hot”.
10. What advice would you give an industry newcomer?
Choose your words wisely and never let your mood dictate your manners. You WILL cross paths with that person you expect to never see again. Learn from those around you with experience, barely a day goes by where I don’t learn something new.
Have a question for Phil? Leave it below and we’ll get you the answer.
Getting to Know You is our good will gesture to promote the TIME program. The TIME program is focused on a Mentor/Mentee relationship that is ‘mentee-driven’. Mentors are drawn from the senior ranks of the industry and have generously volunteered their time and energy to the mentor process. They are matched to Mentees on the basis of non-conflicting business skills and experience that enables them to offer advice and perspective to the Mentee. The role of the Mentor is to hold their Mentee accountable and to offer challenging ideas that will inspire the Mentee, helping to building the individuals self confidence through praise, encouragement and constructive feedback.
If you are interested in joining TIME as a mentor or mentee visit their website
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