I love airports. I’m serious. Even in these days of a less than optimal air travel experience, I still have a kid-like fascination with the very concept of an airport. The moving walkways, the arrival and departure boards, airplanes taking off outside of the windows. You walk through a door in Seattle and you walk out a door in Bangkok.
And still there are people who don’t believe in magic.
Calendars are a lot like airports. You walk through one portal at the end of the year into a new adventure in the next. So as you prepare to hop off of Flight 2016 and saunter over to Flight 2017, it may be a worthwhile exercise to think through a few tips to ensure a great trip.
Regardless of where you ended up in 2016, next year is a clean slate. Spend some time with your business plan. It doesn’t have to be elaborate, but work through some goals and objectives for yourself. Sketch out a marketing calendar. If you need a bit of help, take a look at these articles for a refresher course in the basics of a marketing plan.
Review your associates. Take a look at your partnerships both internally and externally. Look at employees, clients, and suppliers. There is no more important element in your business life than the people with which you surround yourself. In short, people either power your company or they drain your company. They make your business (and personal) life easier or they don’t. They assist you with being energetic and creative, they support your efforts with enthusiasm, or they don’t. But YOU are the one who chooses your 2017 traveling companions, so choose wisely.
In 2017, resolve to educate yourself. Take a course in sales, marketing, or customer service. Attend webinars, go on a FAM trip, and continually seek out new opportunities for growth. Most good trainers will coach you into remembering what you already know, but they will put it in front of you in such a way you can no longer ignore the need to incorporate the lesson into your travel practice.
Finally, take a moment at the end of this year for gratitude. You have the great good fortune of being involved in an industry with the power to create life experiences, to bring families closer, to create cultural understandings. In a politically divisive and angry world, you stand for unity. There is a great deal for which to be thankful.
You are now approaching Flight 2017. Buckle up, you know how a seat belt works.
Many thanks for being with us for the past year.