Ask not what hospitality can do for you …

Whilst recently engaged in professional hospitality sector business we attended a tourism fair and had the opportunity of pitching the values and benefits of being a member of an industry institute, which overall proved both successful and rewarding. All of this was pro bono and in support of the broad hospitality sector, which as you will see proves ironic. As a result of this engagement there was an experience that was of concern.

One of the students inquired if we would be interested in hosting a blog on their specialist subject to which we replied in the affirmative and put them in touch with our folk who would arrange the publishing of the blog. What happened next was a surprise.

Instead of receiving a blog, the publishers received an explanation that said there would be no blog, as having thought about it there appeared to be nothing in it for the writer and therefore there was no point.

We found this quite disturbing for several reasons. Firstly, having completed a four-year degree-level qualification one would have expected there would be an appreciation of how such exposure could encourage interest and debate in both the subject matter and author. Secondly it should have been evident that this was a great opportunity for a serious debut in a mature and well-respected publication for a young newcomer. Thirdly it demonstrated a possible self-opinionated style that was entirely self-serving and, in our view, unhealthy.

Whilst we realize one of the most important things to stress to anyone is what is in it for them, this approach was of concern, especially as we are involved with the student population worldwide. Let us hope this was a one-off and does not reflect a potential attitude or a significant gap in the education agenda.

Do you have any experiences that would assist us either way in our concerns? Any student opinion would be particularly interesting.