How would you ever know what you are missing in your arsenal of capabilities if you do not stress-test the system with someone with a fresh perspective?
Quote from Vivek Bhogaraju of Expedia Group, in an article on PhocusWire this week.
11 uncomfortable truths about hotel revenue management
Bhogaraju's comments are related to one particular discipline in the hotel sector - but the remarks should be acknowledged in every corner of the travel, tourism and hospitality industry.
There are a number of uncomfortable truths in the industry, particularly around diversity (to its credit, Expedia is doing something about it) - but there is another element that points to the inward-looking nature of the business.
The travel sector is full of processes and historic relationships that often leave newbies scratching their heads as to how and why.
How has something that is inherently inefficient being allowed to continue? Why is nothing done about it?
The answer is generally a variation on the following: "That's the way it's always been done."
The lifeblood on any industry (as we've said before) is the startup culture that helps inject new ideas and thinking into the sector.
But this is fairly peripheral, in some respects.
As Bhogaraju notes, job descriptions for revenue managers often set a requirement of experience in the hotel sector, rather than thinking that someone outside of that sphere can actually make a difference.
Revenue management is not alone, as we highlighted above.
Sure, people from outside of the industry are recruited to influential positions all the time (and many leave), yet a culture required to allow external thinking to alter many of the old processes is difficult to find at scale.
This is beginning to change in a few areas, with chief digital officers (or an equivalent role) being brought in to handle so-called "digital transformation" programs.
Yet, as has been recalled privately on many occasions, such a radical overhaul of a business - or, indeed, an entire strand of the industry - requires the "buy-in" of those who have more than a passing interest in things remaining the same.
That is, therefore, perhaps the biggest challenge of all - not the practice of recruiting new people from out of state, but changing the mindset of those who are eager to keep Kansas just the way it is.