Although Booking.com is now one of the largest travel e-commerce companies in the world, when Gillian Tans left a successful job in the hotel sector to join the Amsterdam-headquartered company, it was still in the start-up stages, reports assistant editor, Ann Ruppenstein in this week’s digital edition of Canadian Travel Press.
“I firmly believed that the internet was going to disrupt the hotel industry,” she tells Canadian Travel Press of her decision to make the career switch. “While arguably a risky career move at the time, I have always been guided by curiosity and I was intrigued by the potential I saw for the internet to impact the marketing opportunity for hotels.”
Along the same lines, her top advice for women thinking of getting into the tech and travel industry is to take risks and not be afraid of failure.
“It can be a difficult step, but I hope women will take more risks and understand that failure often leads to growth,” says Tans, who stems from a background in the hotel industry as the product manager at Golden Tulip Hotels and the Intercontinental Hotel Group.
As for her own mentors, she credits her parents for inspiring her to work hard and create opportunities for others through her successes.
“My mother is creative – she could build anything out of nothing – and I learned a lot about creativity and entrepreneurship from her,” she says. “From my father I inherited a strong work ethic, something he instilled into our family early on.”
For the full story, check out this week’s digital edition of Canadian Travel Press.