When I was asked to contribute to the Travel Agent Diaries, I initially felt I had nothing to contribute that a veteran or new agent would find remotely interesting. After a bit of back and forth, I was convinced that I had plenty to contribute. And I am very thankful for that vote of confidence and that push. The Travel Agent Diaries series, in so many ways, has contributed to my professional and personal development. Read the rest of this entry »
Richard Earls wrote in a recent article “Mistakes are not the most desirable of instructors, but they teach lessons better than successes.” This made me smile, as I recently made a series of mistakes when I decided to escort my own group cruise.
The first mistake I made was assuming, because my husband and I combined, know a good deal of people, I would have no problem at all selling 16 cabins. In fact, after I announced it to my circle of influence, I received very positive feedback. I even created a nifty “all about the ship” PowerPoint presentation to address some of the frequently asked questions. I was confident, with the right marketing; I would have at least half of the cabins booked by my option date. But to my dismay, my first endeavor to escort a group was a bust to say the least. Read the rest of this entry »
A few articles back I talked about hiring a business coach. The summer of 2012 was one of reflection for me, I needed to evaluate where I was and if I was any closer to where I wanted to be. Was I positioning myself for success? What am I going to do with all of these ideas that are swirling around in my head? I admit that I needed focus.
I was spinning my wheels and literally getting nowhere. So I hired a business coach. It was important to me that the person I hired gave me solid advice. I wanted to walk away from each session with real building blocks that once implemented, would help my business to grow. Read the rest of this entry »
Recently I have been rethinking my fee structure. Primarily because I made the same mistake a lot of travel agents make that have committed to requiring a deposit or retainer–waiving them for family and friends. To date I have broken my rule to charge a service deposit before doing any research, five times. It is no surprise that none of the five have yet to be booked. Read the rest of this entry »
Do you ever feel like you have a thousand different ideas but can’t narrow down the one that is going to fit for your business; the one that is going to put your brand on the map?
For me it has been an ongoing struggle for the last two years. After finally making a decision to strike out on my own I have had to start from scratch, creating a new identity. And that is just not an easy thing to do. I was fortunate enough to come up with the creative concept that would help in the creation of my web design and the few marketing materials that I have but now what? How do I put a plan of action together to really market me? Read the rest of this entry »
I started my Traveling Kidd Facebook page last year. Aside from a few posts, I was less than motivated to really put any energy into it. I found my reluctance ironic primarily because I spend a huge portion of my day on Facebook. In fact, I spend so much time on it that I am easily distracted from doing important things (like writing Agent diary articles). Recently during my trip to Las Vegas I made a decision to commit myself to putting forth an all-out effort to get my page in order. Read the rest of this entry »
I have a confession. I am a home based travel agent with a full time job.
Whew, I feel much better that I admitted it! I remember when I joined the industry; I read quite a few forum comments that implied, home based agents that joined the industry in a part time capacity were not taken seriously by their peers. In fact, I learned a new term– “vanity career”. It was used to describe people that joined the travel industry because they loved to travel, thought the benefits included traveling cheap and flexible hours. Fortunately, those were never my drivers. Read the rest of this entry »
Two years ago when I officially started doing business, I remember having the worst case of butterflies you could imagine. Some of it was due to uncertainty– would I be overwhelmed with more clients than I could handle (I wish), would I make a mistake that would expose me as the rookie that I was. However, the majority of my concerns and reservations were based primarily on the dreaded “first consultation”. Read the rest of this entry »
As a brand new company in 2012, I have set monthly goals for myself. January was my month to find a vehicle to network and get my name out there in the community. As one of my peers said to me “No one can hire you, if they don’t know you are out there”. So I figured if other businesses knew about “Traveling Kidd” that would be half the battle. Read the rest of this entry »
Celebrating the beginning of 2012 meant more to me then bringing in the New Year. For me, it was the beginning of a new focus for my home based business and re-evaluating my career goals after a slight detour that took me into another direction.
I started my career in the travel industry full of excitement but with no experience outside of a background in Executive Support and a Travel Management course at my Community College. I had a vague idea of what I wanted my niche to be but no clear idea on how to articulate it. Read the rest of this entry »