Updated 11/13/2020, 11:00AM

Redefining the hospitality and tourism landscape in the new normal

DOT NCR and Okada Manila’s hybrid event highlights the importance
of leadership and maximizing the digital space

Manila, Philippines—The Department of Tourism- National Capital Region (DOT- NCR) in partnership with Okada Manila held the second leg of the “Leadership Excellence Series 2020: Rebuild and Redefine,” an online learning event, last October 30, at the Grand Ballroom of Asia’s largest Forbes five-star ultra-luxury integrated resort.

Envisioned as a top-notch online learning forum for hospitality, tourism, and travel stakeholders, the event underscored 21st century leadership and business strategies in harnessing global practices while keeping them relevant in the local setting.

Following the world-famous TED Talk format, the online learning talk featured a formidable set of speakers, including Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo- Puyat; DOT Undersecretary Maria Rica C. Bueno; top-ranked multinational speaker and one of two John Maxwell high-impact trainers in the country, Ardy S. Abello; and Asian millennial guru and winner of The Apprentice Asia Jonathan Yabut. “Leadership Excellence Series 2020: Rebuild and Redefine” was moderated by CNN Ph’s New Day and Newsroom anchor, Ria Tanjuatco-Trillo.

In his opening remarks, DOT-NCR Regional Director Woodrow C. Maquiling, Jr. shared how the redefining of the tourism landscape was of paramount importance in the new normal, hence the need for an online learning forum that will equip key stakeholders with invaluable knowledge. “Time and time again, Philippine tourism has consistently proven its resilience and not just its ability to bounce back as a sector, but to also lead the country’s economic and social recovery. Amid this uncharted territory called ‘the new normal’, tourism offers a unique opportunity for a more sustainable and responsible conduct of business. One of the fastest ways to build consumer confidence is through tourism because of its multi-sectoral breadth and deep social footprint.”

Further driving the point home was DOT Undersecretary Maria Rica C. Bueno, who asserted that those in the tourism sector could harness the digital space for a much-needed boost towards business recovery. “Online presence is very important because content is the new currency.” She also added important points on leadership, an integral facet of overcoming a crisis such as the pandemic. “Our high-impact trainer, Ardy, put it succinctly: Everything rises and falls on leadership. Leadership is something that goes beyond profit and requires social responsibility. How our businesses impact society now matters. A crisis does not make one a leader. Instead, it exposes the kind of leader a person is. Therefore, one’s response in today’s crisis has something to do with the choices one makes.”

Full of sharp and useful insights, this hybrid lecture is Okada Manila’s first event since the integrated resort temporarily suspended its operations following the announcement of the enhanced community quarantine in March.

“Leadership Excellence Series 2020: Rebuild and Redefine” was held with the strict implementation of Okada Manila’s 3T Campaign, which features health and safety protocols for guests and team members. The Grand Ballroom of Okada Manila, aside from being thoroughly disinfected, was reconfigured for optimal physical distancing. All guests were also required to accomplish a health declaration form.

The hotel, which has received the DOT Certificate of Authority to Operate for Staycations (CAOS), has made all the necessary preparations to welcome guests back into its doors, so everyone can experience the five-star experience they have come to know and love.

While the new normal posts several challenges, Okada Manila and DOT have made sure to lead and contribute to the recovery of the Philippine hospitality and tourism industry with a trailblazing event such as this highly-informative hybrid lecture series.

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