The one thing that never changes is that people want to interact with others.

For those who have visited the City of London over the last year, one of the most striking features has often been how quiet the streets have been but also how the NED hotel offered an immediate contrast as it was far busier than the activity in the streets. It told a clear message; people may not want to travel back to offices but they do want to connect, do want to meet friends, clients, colleagues and they want social interaction.

TFL’s own research and figures in the early part of the year would note that people were travelling into London on weekends and in the evenings at the same level as in 2019. People were travelling to socialise and to have experiences.

It showcased first-hand the importance of the hospitality industry and the role which it plays to all people, of all levels, across society. Hospitality today plays a far more central and influential role in society which is recognised in a way it was not in previous eras.

This also should highlight to companies just how they need to reimagine the workplace. If people are travelling to great hospitality outlets and not to offices, it tells a story which should be listened to.

Microsoft ran a study which found that 84% of people would be motivated to come into work more frequently by the promise of being able to enhance connections with co-workers. It noted that too many leaders were trying to use corporate policies to force them back, rather than using those human connections as leverage.

The report makes an interesting point in noting that too few leaders really talk about the team and what the teams needs to do to come together.

In Hospitality, success and failure is all about the importance of the team, so is a concept which is well understood but clearly many companies have struggled to communicate that the importance of teams and people. Maybe this has been to hospitality’s gain over the last year? It is hospitality outlets which is bringing teams together as one.

The report goes on to note that 76% of the people surveyed noted that they would stay at their company longer if they had more learning and development. If they do not that feel senior management prioritizes them, then they will move on.

This is a frustrating statistic to hear as research reports will show that this has always been the case. Back in the 90s, every report would note that people would stay if they felt they were being developed and supported. However, often, leaders today focus on the salary as the incentive and yet not invest in L&D.

The report goes onto note that a mind shift change is needed. The point is fair but it is more that old lessons have been forgotten and many companies have not focused enough on the core pillars of L&D and team development.

As all companies rebuild, one can see the strong advancement in many areas but also realise that little has changed either over all the years. It is still all about culture and people.

So how can this be reimagined?