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Go to Ouagadougou (the capital of a
country called ... that was previously
called ...). Expand your mind
Set yourself a personal goal of making at least two
overseas working trips each year. If your organisation
doesn’t cooperate then don’t limit yourself there. Find
a progressive employer who is open minded and
encourages travel in order to develop the business and
the ambitious people within it.
One of my early career ambitions was to travel the world at my
employer’s expense. I achieved this. If that is your ambition too
then this is the chapter to wave in front of your boss (assuming
he or she is not on assignment in Ouagadougou).
People who never move outside their village during their lives
develop what I call ‘village mentality’. They have limited horizons
and see things only in terms of what is
happening in their village. The same
applies to employees or managers who
spend all their career working in the
same place for the same company.
Village mentality’ is then named
Conversely those who travel the world have the opportunity to
gain global perspectives and real understanding of different
cultures. This positions them well in their careers when it comes
to reaching out for broad-spanning jobs that embrace the
complexities demanded of a triple-seven mind. International
travel colours a person, adding a third dimension of deep and
People with ‘village
mentality’ have
limited horizons
vivid experience to a knowledge that comprises no more than an
outline sketch in the minds of those who have never travelled.
Travel also brings oodles of motivation and a kudos amongst
colleagues, friends and family. I’m sorry my daughter can’t be
with us this evening, but yesterday she popped across to San
Francisco for an important business meeting. She should be
back tomorrow.’
Travelling the world brings experiences you’ve never dreamt of
and that you can put to good use in entertaining those old bores
back in the office. It is a cliché to state that we now live in a
global world. Any professional person should therefore be able
to include achievements in various parts of the globe on his or
her CV.
So if you haven’t done so already now is the time to get on your
bike’ (as Baron Norman Tebbit famously once said), take a ride
to the airport and fly off to confront the biggest overseas chal-
lenge your department has. Alternatively just book yourself a
place at an important conference on the other side of the world.
Ignore those miserable sods back home who call it a ‘jolly’ or a
‘jaunt. Even though you will definitely have fun you will still
learn an immense amount, hopefully achieve much and after a
few days return home a better person. What more could anyone
want? How could I be sitting here in the Philippines writing this
if I had not practised what I preach? I’ve just returned from pre-
senting in four different cities in China, and before that I was in
Mauritius. Next month I’ll be making one of my regular visits to
Singapore and then it’s another trip to
China. Later this year will find me in
South Africa for the ‘nth’ time. Travel
opens up vistas in the mind you could
not previously imagine. It gives you
confidence too.
Travel The World
Travel opens up
vistas in your mind
you could not
previously imagine
Keep a travel journal.
Take notes.
Jot down key lessons and look for the best in every country
you visit even if it is the worst in the world (and there
is one).
Learn to say ‘Hello, how are you? and Thank you’ in the
language of the country you are visiting.
Memorise some basic facts about the country you will be
visiting (recent history, the name of the president, etc.).
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