Our second installment of interviews with frequent travellers is here! This time we talk to Aaron Oxley, Executive Director of RESULTS UK, an organisation that works to create the public and political will to end poverty. Since RESULTS works at a grassroots as well as an international level, this means that Aaron often visits the communities they are helping and working with, making him an experienced traveller.
What is your favourite part about travelling for business?
The three seconds after I’ve just closed the front door, turned around, taken a couple of steps and properly realise I’m setting off on a new adventure to some far-flung destination. Something exciting is going to happen!
What’s the first thing you do when you get to your hotel?
Aircon. Shower. Get out of the hotel.
What is the one thing you cannot do without when you’re travelling?
If I’ve got my iPhone I’ve got music, movies, hundreds of books, the internet, my email, a camera – and I can speak to anyone, anywhere on the planet, instantly. I might be showing my age, but I still can’t believe I get all that in something smaller than my wallet.
What do you love most about your job?
I get to meet a lot of interesting people, and I get to talk with them about some of the most pressing problems on our planet, affecting billions of poor people. I get to inspire them about how they can personally help fix those problems by speaking out and taking action. We can end poverty, and I love helping other people realise their part in this.
Room service or eating out?
Eating out, unless totally exhausted. Then it’s usually just the nuts from the minibar.
What’s the most unexpected experience that has occurred to you on a business trip?
One trip, I forgot to bring a bottle of red wine with me for a desperately thirsty colleague stationed in a rather dry African country. When I asked the flight attendant if he could help me out, he handed me a carrier bag with 18 of those mini-bottles of red wine with a big wink and a promise of secrecy. In this particular country, however, I quickly discovered that they search your luggage on the way in…
Your number 1 advice for business travellers is…
Always, always take time to have a mini ‘holiday’ when you’re at your destination. You might only have a day in a place like Hyderabad, or a few hours in a small town in rural Wales – and you might never go back. Take even just a few minutes to enjoy and explore being there, and longer if you can. Life’s too short not to.
For more information on RESULTS, visit their official page.