Barely a month and a half after having been named General Manager at Turismo de Islas Canarias, José Juan Lorenzo has already had critical moments to deal with, such as the second wave of the pandemic in Spain and Europe, the ongoing opening and closing of key markets for the Canaries such as the United Kingdom and Germany, or the entry into force of the decree that demands any traveller staying at a hotel establishment to be tested in order to certify they are not a transmitter of the desease.
Lorenzo was born in Lanzarote and is an expert in the tourism industry. His candidacy had to overcome a tough selection process that finally led to him being selected, not only thanks to his capacity to adapt to the tasks related to the management of the Canary Islands brand, but also thanks to his experience in important areas such as digital transformation and tourism sustainability. His professional career, since graduating as an industrial engineer at the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, is marked by his interest in applying innovative ecosystems in the world of tourism, with qualifications in Intelligent Tourism, Data Science and Digital Transformation.
What were your expectations when you decided to apply for this position?
Promotur is the best place for working with a tourism ecosystem project made up of companies and institutions working together. Although I have been working in the world of partnerships bringing together willing parties to increase capabilities, the opportunity of joining the Tourism Department and the Promotur team, as a launchpad for contributing to the cohesion of the industry and defining a common purpose, was what attracted me the most.
What have you found since your arrival?
I have found an extraordinarily talented and capable team, and I believe they are one of the finest destination marketing teams in the world, with a Councillor and a Department that display an extraordinary strength, impetus and clarity. When I am asked if I am travelling at cruising speed, I say yes I am, at intergalactic cruising speed… Without wishing to sound trivial, we are going through crazy times and we need to apply a whole lot of collective intelligence in order to face up to the challenge. Indeed, we are currently collaborating with entities that used to work more independently. Now they are essential, the health service, the accommodation industry, business owners, the Tourism Department, the Promotion Companies and Cabildos… It is time for us all to pull together. I believe that we are collaborating more than ever now, despite the barriers caused by social distancing.
"It is time for us all to pull together. I believe that we are collaborating more
than ever now, despite the barriers caused by social distancing"
How are we facing up to such an unstable world here in the Canaries?
In my opinion, we are doing reasonably well. The epidemic containment data is proof of that. We are very well placed. We are aware that in order to deal with this situation, we need to remain calm, be clear about everything, and we need to come out of all this stronger. We need to use this time to address sustainability in tourism. And this can only be achieved from a system standpoint, not from the point of view of each individual, but as a collective. Only then will we be able to provide solutions such as the decarbonisation of organisations and highlight its value to our visitors, who are demanding this change from us. I assume this responsibility with a huge commitment, to make the Canaries and its tourism industry more competitive, sustainable, cohesive, resilient, collaborative and innovative.