Gennady Podolsky

Travel Agent

Gennady Podolsky is a world-renowned travel expert, agent, and logistics specialist. With years of pertinent global travel expertise and problem-solving expertise, Gennady Podolsky has helped countless clients maximize their travel capabilities.

During his studies at Pennsylvania’s Swarthmore College, Gennady Podolsky launched his inaugural tech-first travel agency, aimed at streamlining the travel booking process by employing technology. Long before travel apps and technologies of the present, Gennady Podolsky recognized the great value and promise in the intersection of tech and travel.

Today, Gennady Podolsky provides bespoke travel concierge services to his clientele, and leverages his years of experience within the industry as a travel writer, contributing to sites like WikiMiles.

What is your typical day, and how do you make it productive?

In the travel business, as with many other businesses and customer service-based industries, you can plan all you want, but client needs always end up driving schedules. Therefore, I have to remain flexible and be immediately available to assist clients in a timely manner. In times of travel disruptions and emergency situations, those take precedence. Only after those needs are met can I focus on other daily tasks and productivity.

How do you bring ideas to life?

It is important to have great collaborators and staff who share your vision and passion and who complement your strengths and weaknesses. I find Kolby principles helpful in building the right teams to make things happen.

What’s one trend that excites you?

It’s so hard to pick just one! I am a big believer in technology and science and its potential to make our lives better, more streamlined, and generally more positive. I think that AI has the potential to revolutionize our world.

Thus, I listen to a lot of podcasts and science news, which I find most uplifting.

What is one habit that helps you be productive?

To be most productive, I tend to focus on my strengths and delegate the rest. I also help people around me to do the same, which creates an atmosphere of collaborative work. This also creates the right environment, where everyone is where they want to be and is doing what they love.

What advice would you give your younger self?

I don’t dwell on the past. I have had my fair share of accomplishments and missteps. I own it. It makes me who I am.

Tell us something you believe almost nobody agrees with you on?

I think the present is the best time humanity has ever lived in. I think the future will be better than the present. We have major problems to solve, such as maintaining a global peaceful coexistence and environmental concerns, among others. I am, however, confident that humanity will find the solutions and continue making the world a better place.

What is the one thing you repeatedly do and recommend everyone else do?

I would recommend that people always maintain curiousity and always listen. Take genuine interest in other people. Follow your passions.

When you feel overwhelmed or unfocused, what do you do?

I go where my sense of wander takes me. My focus and inspiration will return when the time is right.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business or advance in your career?

I think Suze Orman’s motto describes my strategy best: People first, then money, then things. When people feel you treat them the way you want to be treated, they respond in kind.

What is one failure in your career,  how did you overcome it, and what lessons did you take away from it?

I always question norms and try to think of ways to do things differently, and hopefully, better. Sometimes, though, boundaries can stifle innovation, but must still be acknowledged and followed for long-term success. The greatest lesson is being able to walk the line between the two successfully.

What is one business idea you’re willing to give away to our readers?

I think there is a great need for a sophisticated call-screening app with lots of customizable options. Can someone get on that, please?

What is one piece of software that helps you be productive? How do you use it?

I love my Airalo app. It keeps me connected seamlessly and securely everywhere in the world without breaking the bank. I never have to use a random WiFi or carry an extra device.

Do you have a favorite book or podcast you’ve gotten a ton of value from and why?

I love to read and I listen to so many podcasts! I listen to Freakonomics, Babbage, and This American Life, as well as Throughline.

What’s a movie or series you recently enjoyed and why?

I enjoyed “The Playlist” on Netflix, about the creation of Spotify. I loved the innovative storytelling. The different experiences told from each character’s perspective felt true to life for me.

Key learnings

  • Divide and conquer. Spearheading tasks that play to your skillsets and offloading other tasks is a great way to ensure balanced workdays.
  • Follow your sense of wander. Sometimes, it’s the best way to clear your mind and move forward!
  • Technology has the propensity to change our lives for the better, as long as we remain open-minded.