The Year In Review and Looking Forward to 2022, Part 1

OKAY we hit another bump on the road to a fragile recovery but that’s no reason to despair. If there’s one thing this pandemic has taught us, it’s not to take anything for granted but to take each punch as it lands and get up ahain. So here’s looking back at 2021 (oh, what a year) and forward to 2022 (please, let it be good). And from the answers here, it seems everyone’s definitely more optimistic about the year ahead.

Ross Veitch, CEO & Co-founder,
Wego

Q: Looking back – one word to describe 2021
Challenging
Q: One word you wish would disappear from the vocabulary
Travel restriction
Q: One word you wish would be used more
Quarantine free
Q: Looking forward – one word to describe 2022
Guarded optimism
Q: Looking at your data, how would you describe the start of 2022? 
Sluggish
Q: What is your gut, data and guesswork telling you about how the rest of 2022 will pan out?
At some point in 2022 we’ll overtake 2019 levels of demand and revenue but hard to say in which month that will occur because of some uncertainty around Omicron.
Q: What’s the one key thing you’re doing to prepare your business for whatever lies ahead?
We’ve re-calibrated the business to be profitable at current demand levels (approx 50% 2019) so it’s all upside from here.
Q: What is the biggest opportunity for your business in 2022?
M&A opportunities
Q:  What part of your job would you like to do more of in 2022?
Travelling for business
Q: On a scale of 1-10, rate how optimistic (10 being most) how you feel about 2022?
8
Q: What’s the one word you’d like to embrace for 2022? 
Record breaking
Q: What’s the most interesting thing you’ve read or watched that you might not have otherwise?
Neal Stephenson’s new novel “Termination Shock”. (Neal Stephenson, who coined the term ‘metaverse’ in his 1992 novel Snow Crash, takes on global warming and offers a Big Idea to reverse it. What’s not to like?)

Fritz Demopoulos,
CEO, Queen’s Road Capital

Q: Looking back – one word to describe 2021
Frustrating
Q: One word you wish would disappear from the vocabulary
Quarantine
Q: One word you wish would be used more
Brilliant
Q: Looking forward – one word to describe 2022
Anticipation
Q: Looking at your data, how would you describe the start of 2022? 
Cautiously optimistic
Q: What is your gut, data and guesswork telling you about how the rest of 2022 will pan out?
Beyond expectations
Q: What’s the one key thing you’re doing to prepare your business for whatever lies ahead?
Agile decision making
Q: What is the biggest opportunity for your business in 2022?
Consumers want amazing experiences
Q:  What part of your job would you like to do more of in 2022?
Dinners & drinks
Q: On a scale of 1-10, rate how optimistic (10 being most) how you feel about 2022? 

8
Q: What’s the one word you’d like to embrace for 2022? 
Anticipation
Q: What’s the most interesting thing you’ve read or watched that you might not have otherwise?
Listened to the History of Rome podcast

Christine Tan, Managing Director,
Asia Pacific, D’EDGE Hospitality Solutions

Q: Looking back – one word to describe 2021
Discipline
Q: One word you wish would disappear from the vocabulary
Covid
Q: One word you wish would be used more
Kindness
Q: Looking forward – one word to describe 2022

Awakening
Q: Looking at your data, how would you describe the start of 2022? 
Positive
Q: What is your gut, data and guesswork telling you about howB the rest of 2022 will pan out?
It will be better than 2021
Q: What’s the one key thing you’re doing to prepare your business for whatever lies ahead?

Speed to market
Q: What is the biggest opportunity for your business in 2022?
Expansion to untapped markets
Q:  What part of your job would you like to do more of in 2022?
Partnerships
Q: On a scale of 1-10, rate how optimistic (10 being most) how you feel about 2022?
8
Q: What’s the one word you’d like to embrace for 2022? 
Direction
Q: What’s the most interesting thing you’ve read or watched that you might not have otherwise?
If I have to name one, Squid Game was a big surprise!     

Tao Tao, Co-founder & COO, GetYourGuide

Q: Looking back – one word to describe 2021
Adapt
Q: One word you wish would disappear from the vocabulary
Virtual drinks.
Q: One word you wish would be used more
Travelling.
Q: Looking forward – one word to describe 2022
Normalisation.
Q: Looking at your data, how would you describe the start of 2022? 
Hopeful
Q: What is your gut, data and guesswork telling you about how the rest of 2022 will pan out?
Strong regional travel rebound. Cross-continent travel will recover but remain below pre-pandemic levels
Q: What’s the one key thing you’re doing to prepare your business for whatever lies ahead?

Improving the customer experience.
Q: What is the biggest opportunity for your business in 2022?
Seeing the impact from the product and supply improvements we made in the last two years.
Q:  What part of your job would you like to do more of in 2022?
Visiting our local teams.
Q: On a scale of 1-10, rate how optimistic (10 being most) how you feel about 2022?
8 (but that’s how I feel every year since starting the company).
Q: What’s the one word you’d like to embrace for 2022? 
Growth
Q: What’s the most interesting thing you’ve read or watched that you might not have otherwise?
‘A Theory of Justice’ and ‘The Sovereign Individual’

Timothy Hughes, Vice President, Corporate Development, Agoda

Q: Looking back – one word to describe 2021
Unstoppable (in that  “travel is….”)
Q: One word you wish would disappear from the vocabulary:  
NewNormal
Q: One word you wish would be used more:  
Kindness
Q: Looking forward – one word to describe 2022:
Back! (as in “we’re….”
Q: Looking at your data, how would you describe the start of 2022?
Very hopeful
Q: What is your gut, data and guesswork telling you about how the rest of 2022 will pan out?
The speed of the recovery is now in the hands of governments.  How they react to the declining but still existing risks of Covid.  How quickly they move from pandemic management to endemic management and allow more (and easier) cross border travel
Q: What’s the one key thing you’re doing to prepare your business for whatever lies ahead?
People retention
Q: What is the biggest opportunity for your business in 2022?
International travel comes back
Q:  What part of your job would you like to do more of in 2022?
Networking! Getting back on the road and meeting startups, targets and connected people.
Q: On a scale of 1-10, rate how optimistic (10 being most) how you feel about 2022?
9
Q: What’s the one word you’d like to embrace for 2022? 
Kindess (again)
Q: What’s the most interesting thing you’ve read or watched that you might not have otherwise?  
Basically everything on Netflix. I watched a lot of real junk just to pass the time locked down.  Covid has put us into a content glut and quality rut.

Featured image: Getty Images

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