Name: Jason Elliott
Profession: Founder & CEO of The Go Generation: A Luxury Experiential Travel Company
One Word That Describes You: Intentional
What does being one of the BEMM 100 Ambassadors mean to you?
Black Enterprise Modern Man is a celebration of diversity among men of color and to be a representative and champion of this celebration and mission is both an humbling honor and a wonderful opportunity.
What are you doing as an Ambassador to help support black male achievement, now or in the future?
Ever since I was a young child, travel has played and continues to play vital role in my growth and development as a man. So, I believe that its vital for young men to partake in international experiences to become and remain well rounded and well informed global citizens. As The Go Generation continues grow, it is my goal and mission to invest in students who are not only seeking opportunities to enhance their high school or collegiate education with a global experience, but also support those who are seeking careers in the experiential travel industry.
What are some examples of how you turned struggle into success?
In my former career as a management consultant, the atmosphere that I was working in was extremely competitive and sometimes very hostile. As the environment was based on performance, I struggled with self-confidence and self-worth as you were always compared to others openly, and comparing yourself to others internally. There was a time period toward the latter part of my career when things had become pretty difficult, it was then I had a moment of clarity in that I realized just because someone has an opinion of me doesn’t mean it’s the truth. When I finally started to walk in this revelation, is when I was able to truly come alive and appreciate and use my own gifts and talents.
What is an important quality you look for in your relationships with others?
My best relationships are with those who have a deep sense of passion and purpose for what they do and their reason for why they do what they do. As Simon Sinek puts eloquently “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it,” so I really enjoy people who are passionate about their why.
What are some immediate projects you are working on?
We recently launched a new line of small group luxury travel experiences for women called MBALI (meaning “flower” in Zulu). Our goal is to bring together a small group of women (no more than 10) who are looking to meet other like-minded ladies through a deeper connection with a destination, culture, and community. It’s always difficult introducing a new concept into the market, but we are confident that it will be a success. Our first experience is in South Africa in December, so we are hoping that it does well so that we can introduce new destinations such as Patagonia, India, Antarctica, and parts of Southeast Asia among others.
What is the best advice you ever received?
The best advice I received is that everyone has different gifts and talents, so focus on what you do and do it well.
What is some advice you have for other men who want to make a difference?
Making a difference requires constant change, flexibility, resiliency, and huge amounts of faith. For those who choose to take the road less traveled, I would tell them to prepare to be disrespected and misunderstood, but also prepare to succeed.
How do you prep for an important business meeting and/or event?
Usually before all client meetings, or meetings with new partners, I try really hard to understand everything about them as an individual (e.g. interests, affiliations, hobbies) this helps me get a better sense of the person I’m engaging with. Then I pray.
As a busy Modern Man, how do you unwind on vacation? Share a story about your best vacation.
We send clients to some of the most interesting and captivating places in the world to partake in extraordinary experiences, but for me I prefer extremely low-key vacations that give me the ability to relax and reflect. I am a fan of the Southern California coastline and find it extremely peaceful. On my most recent visit, I hiked to the top of Cowles Mountain in San Diego and just sat and reflected.
If you could travel and stay anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?
I am really nerdy when it comes to architecture and design of hotels and resorts. With that being said, I would travel to Singita Lebombo Lodge in Kruger National Park in South Africa. South Africa is by far my favorite country in the world. What this property has been able to accomplish through architecture, interior design, and guest service for being in the middle of the South African bush is truly remarkable.
Anything else you’d like to say?
Luke 12:48: “To whom much is given much is required.”
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