So this is my last piece for TRO and it’s supposed to be a wrap-up of the year, but I pretty much did that for my last entry. I’m writing this just before I leave town for Thanksgiving and I thought that I’d use the holiday as my theme. What, professionally, am I thankful for this year? Read the rest of this entry »
We all have heard over and over again that “change is difficult” but I have to say, that while change can be difficult, what I have found change to be is “constant!” It’s something we have to live with.
This year, our agency left American Express Travel Network and moved to Travel Leaders. Of course that was a big change and necessitated not only our engagement and learning curve but we had to “train” some of our clients as well. And while I was afraid we’d lose some of our American Express clientele, we did not. In fact, I think we’ve had more business from them than we had in the past! Read the rest of this entry »
I have been struggling this month with getting work done. Over Labor Day weekend, I knocked my head and suffered a minor concussion. For the doctor it may be minor, but for me…not so much. I am told to expect headaches and ringing in my ears for weeks, perhaps months. Throw in some blinding headaches and I am many shades of miserable. Still, I am sucking it up and coming to work, but I feel as though my concentration has slipped a bit and it’s a challenge to tend to all the work I need! Read the rest of this entry »
So, it has bee a couple of difficult weeks – busy, but not so much with new stuff. It seems as though every single final payment came due at once; and that “once” was last week. And then I discovered that I hadn’t invoiced some things! And then our accounting office found some commission payments of mine that were missing in action previously; but were not reconciling with the correct invoices!
But the most interesting thing I’ve been up against is trying to figure out (well, actually learn) a new iZento program – using a ClientBase+ “rescard” to drive the iZento “trip journal.” Read the rest of this entry »
I’m not certain when this happened but my business has become almost entirely Foreign Independent Travel, or FIT! Oh I yearn for a simple RSSC or Azamara cruise booking with a little pre/post package and some air. Some days it is overwhelming.
Here’s what I have going today with dozens more that do not need action this minute: Read the rest of this entry »
So, during all my young adult years, I pictured myself in some sort of “important” career – a COO, maybe a consultant, who knows. But here I am–bottom line: I am in retail. Yes, I am in retail. We all are. The difference is that our customers don’t leave the shop with a bag of goodies. We sell, but we sell dreams and in some cases, aspirations. I do know that if I am going to be in retail, I prefer to sell Bentley or Hermes but this clientele seems a little bit elusive.
This week, I have brought up the topic of budget with two different clients who actually said replied with something like, “don’t worry about my checkbook, just tell me how much what I want is going to cost and assure me that it is fair.” Read the rest of this entry »
I just got back and I swear I will never again take two weeks of vacation away from this desk! On April 1st I left the office for 3 nights in Prague, and then a 7-night Danube cruise on the AMA Verde. I worried about the office almost the entire time. If there was no email for me when I awoke in the morning I would relax for the rest of the day; but around 6pm Bratislava time, I would start to get anxious. In the end, I heard nothing from the office and lo and behold, nothing happened!
Why was I so worked up? Read the rest of this entry »
We are no longer with American Express and are now with Travel Leaders and suddenly it is the normal state of being. Honestly, it can’t be anything but that now – we’re so busy that we can’t pay attention to the change in our status. What is going on here?
Could it possibly be the end of the recession? Business is coming in for the three employee agents like its 2007! Almost more than we can handle, really. Well, almost.
Where is the business coming from? Read the rest of this entry »
It’s been almost two full months since our agency migrated from American Express Travel Network to Travel Leaders. It’s all a little less confusing and the referrals to us from American Express finally stopped after six weeks! They were still sending people to us even though we were no longer associated with American Express and had been removed from their main websites.
We’ve been doing an awful lot of training with Travel Leaders – at least one webinar a week has helped us all to be less anxious about the change. Read the rest of this entry »
I’ve been an agent since 1996 and have worked in three (you might say “four” which I’ll explain later) agencies, starting out 100% corporate but within a year convinced the agency owner that he really needed a strong leisure program.
I very quickly came to understand the importance of aligning with a consortium – not only does the small agency reap higher commissions from day one, but the assistance in marketing is almost priceless. Even more important than choosing the right consortium is getting the agents to buy into the various programs—after all the owner is paying for them.
So why did I title this “Kaleidoscope”? In my years as an agent, I have worked for: Read the rest of this entry »