A week in the life | Travel Research Online


A week in the life

“So, just what does an at-home cruise sales agent do all week?” It is a question I am always asked. While it is hard to describe on the spot, I thought I would pick a week from my calendar, add some notes and explanations and demonstrate a week in the life of Chuck Flagg. This reflects the week of March 23-29, 2009.  Most all of my activities outside of my home are completed between 7:15 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.when my daughter is in school. My travel booking and follow up is handled in the afternoons and early evenings and in the empty spaces.

10:00 a.m. – Noon:
Meals On Wheels I devote two hours a week every Monday delivering for Meals on Wheels as a volunteer. This keeps me centered and reminds me what is really important in life. When drawing up my business plan for 2009, giving back to my community was included, and this was priority number one.

7:45 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.:
Business Referral Club meeting. I couldn’t find a referral group that worked with  my schedule so I started one right at the clubhouse for my neighborhood. This referral group has already paid off for me within the first month as one member of our group offered a referral which led to a profitable booking.

4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.: Business after Hours. More than any other function I do with my Chamber of Commerce, these after work gatherings with other business owners and employees have afforded me the best networking opportunities. I have to arrange for child care for this. It helps to have good friends.

10:00 a.m.:
Ribbon Cutting ceremony. As an ambassador for my Chamber, I am asked to attend and support as many of these as possible. I am glad to do it as it allows me more chances to network. The members of my Chamber are very supportive of other members, especially when you do business with them. These members may not personally do business with me themselves, but they remember me and refer people to me.

Noon -1:30 p.m.: Toastmasters meeting. Membership in Toastmasters has allowed me to not only hone my public speaking skills, but my listening skills as well. Nothing is more important than listening to the desires and dreams of our clients. There are several roles in the weekly meetings that help participants improve both their speaking and listening skills.

8:15 a.m.- 11:15a.m.:
Middle School Career Fair. This is a yearly event sponsored by our Chamber of Commerce.

6:30 p.m.: Dinner and a speech about fundraising cruises to Rotary Club. This invite came from someone I met at February’s Business after Hours event.

8:00 a.m.- 9:00a.m.:
First meeting of a free Book Club and Entrepreneurial Coaching seminar based on Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich. Several members of my Toastmasters group are taking part in this mastermind group.

Noon: 12@12 leads group at the Chamber offices. Twelve business owners in non-competitive fields meet over a ninety minute lunch to share about their business and what would make a good referral for them.

Noon: Appointment at the post office to renew my daughter’s passport. Both parents need to be present for this and luckily they offer Saturday hours. Her passport expires this year and now I will have first hand local knowledge of the process to obtain this important travel document.

Scheduled throughout this “typical week” are to-do lists, time to answer phone calls and emails, write a press release, or work on my group prospecting. My home based business requires that I be out in public as often as possible letting people know what I do; otherwise they would never know I existed or what I did. And besides, I don’t like having a blank day on my calendar.

Chuck Flagg is an independent owner/operator of SeaMaster Cruises in Canton, GA. For information contact Chuck at cflagg@seamastercruises.com or by phone at 770-355-9569.

  4 thoughts on “A week in the life

  1. I am so impressed with how much you do! For a homebased agent you sure do get out a lot.
    Your post has made me realize that maybe I need to get out more, and get more involved with the community or other organizations.
    Thanks Chuck!

  2. Chuck Flagg says:

    Thanks Laura. My home owner’s association frowns on the idea of putting a giant rotating neon sign advertising the fact that I sell cruises. So I have to let people know what I do what how they can get in touch with me. Getting out of the house allows them to do that. Looking ahead to May, I have two days without something scheduled. I am already thinking about what I can do on those days.

    My chamber really helps local businesses and I make it a point to do business with other chamber member businesses or refer people to them. We are all in this together and since referrals are the best way to build business this makes the most investment sense for me.

  3. Good article, Chuck! It certainly helps me a little bit, too! I’m curious though – in a typical week, how many hours would you estimate you put in dealing directly with your clients or their needs either quoting, booking, finalizing, or just keeping up the relationship with a “hello”!

    Also, is networking like you laid out in your week the only marketing you do?

  4. Chuck Flagg says:

    I am just getting started having been a stay at home dad for five years. We had also moved around quite a bit since 2000, arriving in this location three years ago. So I was starting out completely as an unknown to the other business leaders in my community.

    Right now, more of my time is spent cultivating relationships. Most of my marketing dollars are spent in that respect. I am also working on several group prospects. These take time to build that relationship and trust just to get to the option of submitting a proposal.

    The clients I do have I spend probably the least amount of time on at this point in my career.

    I try to email everyone every other week, but I did contact them quite often last week to keep them informed about the H1N1 virus and its affects on cruise travel.

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