For many years, I counseled travel business owners from the comfort of my corporate office. I didn’t have to worry about paying the bills, I doled out advice and collected my salary. That all changed three years ago when I made the leap back into home-based business ownership. It was baptism by fire! I had to adapt rather quickly. Five things come to mind that helped me to thrive in this environment.
In the corporate world, risk management is about minimizing the negative impact of financial and managerial decisions. Most are made by committee or die a slow death from analysis paralysis. In my new world as Founder & Chief Commode Cleaner, that risk translates into overhead. I have learned to ask myself, “Is this an investment or an expense, and more importantly - will I use it. Many of the tools are available via monthly subscription such as Office 365, Go-to-Webinar, and Clientbase. These...
Each New Year, we go through the time-honored tradition of making resolutions. Health clubs, Jenny Craig, and similar organizations spend virtually their entire marketing budgets between December 26-January 31. Why? Because most resolutions involve losing weight or quitting a habit. They have tiny window to take advantage this opportunity since statistics show we tend to abandon our resolutions by mid-February only to fall back into our same old routines.
May I suggest a different approach to goal setting? This is one I have practiced with great success for a number of years.
I am often asked about how I have been able to enjoy such a long and diverse career (agency, consortia, supplier, and now as a business adviser) in the travel industry.
The answer is simpler than you might expect. For me, it boils down to these three things.
I really wanted to work on cruise ships, so I did. I really wanted to start a travel agency, so I did. I really thought it would be fun to work for a consortium, so I did (and it was so fun – I worked for two). I really thought it would be cool to be a sales executive for a cruise line, so I did (and it was). I really wanted to give back by coaching professional travel advisers and agency owners to become more successful in business and in life, so I did.
And I just as important – I figured out how to get them. If you really want to get new clients, you need to be willing to do whatever it takes, even if it means stepping out of your...
SUCCESS is a result of knowledge, preparation, and action. But you already know that. So what's holding you back?
Mindset plays a big part, but in the end, it is really the lack of action that causes failure in both life and business.
Isn't it time to take control of your business?
Seriously, why let others tell you what to do and control your success?
If you will let me, I can help you.
I have "walked" in your shoes -literally. Our programs are action based and on my first-hand experience as a travel professional and business owner who built a multi-million dollar company from the ground up.
How did I do it? I took control and never looked back.
I stopped letting people dictate to me how to run my business.
YOU CAN DO WHATEVER YOU WANT!
After a recent web training that I conducted on how to jump-start sales in 30 days or less, I received an interesting email from a home-based adviser who I will call “Bob” (not his real name).
Bob is currently participating in a mastermind program with a well-known industry coaching group, a marketing program with another industry coach, AND… an outside business coach to build “funnels”. For those of you who are counting, that’s three different business coaching programs. Now a frustrated Bob contacted me wanting to know, despite all this expertise, why he still wasn’t selling anything.
In my own coaching practice, I don’t normally work with people just starting out in the business, but he sounded so desperate, that I agreed to a thirty-minute call.
He said that one coach was telling him to be a generalist, another to be a specialist. One said that you can’t make any money selling the Caribbean (to which I...
I was perusing one of the many travel agent forums on Facebook, when I came across a post (since deleted) by a woman who had joined the industry six months earlier and was blaming her marketing and host agency because she has yet to make a sale.
It quickly garnered over a hundred comments, many from other “host bashers” who took similar time to make their first sale. While this is unfathomable to me, I understand where they are coming from – sort of.
It’s no secret, most join our industry because they like to travel, and they like to take care of others. I haven’t met too many people who actually got into the business to sell something.
But that’s what we do. Like it or not, we get paid when and only when we sell something, so doesn’t it make sense to focus on the skills and activities that will produce these repeatable results? If not, you are probably in the wrong business.
Understand, Sales and...
Think and Grow Rich -Timeless Advice
I was in the second grade when our old black and white television broke. It stayed that way for over three years. My parents told us we were watching too much tv (sound familiar), however, the reality was we were too poor to have it fixed or replaced. As a result, I became a voracious reader – a habit that continues to this day.
It was around this same time my grandfather gave me a book that would influence the rest of my life. It was an original, well-read, 1937 copy of the now classic Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. If you are not familiar with it, look it up.
I was not a good student by any stretch of the imagination, I bored easily and dropped out college to follow my passion – scuba diving. I was hired as a diver on a cruise ship. A couple of years later, I moved into the Pursers office. It was a decision that would change my life forever.
It was here that I soon discovered many of the...
I tend to be a little old school. I don’t believe every new app dreamed up by some kid in his basement, who has never sold anything in his life, is going to revolutionize how we sell in this or any other business.
Because travel is such a huge industry world-wide, it attracts all sorts of people trying to capitalize on the “get rich quick with little or no effort” movement so prevalent online. As a professional travel business advisor, I will just say to you, “buyer beware”.
So, you can imagine how annoyed I get when people ask me about my latest “hack” or how to “disrupt” the market. Don’t even get me started on “unicorns.”
Want to do something revolutionary? Try forgetting about hitting gross sales goals and concentrate on producing maximum net revenue – the money you get to keep. Many of us (myself included) tend to get caught up in the pursuit of recognition and...
Take five or ten minutes and write down your memories of your all-time favorite vacation. Now do the same thing for the local merchant you most love to patronize – even though there’s a big box retailer or online company that sells the same thing(s).
Now read your notes. Did you write sentences, bullet points? Did you scratch the surface, or did you take the time to go deeper about your fondest vacation, your most treasured local shopkeeper?
I have interviewed hundreds of travel agents and entrepreneurs in the 30-plus years I have been a public relations professional, writer, and editor. While each and every one of these individuals has been different, there has been one common thread that linked them all.
They all had a compelling personal narrative that made them who they are.
Now mind you, finding that narrative wasn’t always easy. In fact, I would tell you it was downright difficult. That’s why I get paid to uncover these incredible stories. Very simply,...
Professionalism, we hear about it every day. For some reason the subject comes up more & more often in discussion. The majority of travel agents I observe do exhibit a high degree of professionalism. They are the first to point out there is no place in this business for those who behave otherwise. However, some agents, particularly new ones, will sometimes let their passion get in the way of good business and common sense.
What does it mean to be or act “professionally”? Here are a five things I believe epitomize what it means to be a travel professional.