Stop working like a canary in a coal mine | Travel Research Online


Stop working like a canary in a coal mine

First to fall over when the atmosphere is less than perfect… – The Police, 1980

Have you been working like a canary in a coal mine for the past two years? How have you been reacting to every last bit of bad news; rise in NCFs; suppliers making every effort to encourage direct bookings? I am the first to admit that I often find myself in the same frame of mind from time to time. It is easy to get caught up in the latest depressing news of the day which affects our industry.

We should spend less time thinking “woe is me” or “this new policy is so unfair” and more time changing our reaction to those external events and news over which we have ZERO control. Here’s just one example of a recent news story showing you how to turn a negative positive and create a customer touch point. In July, the US Postal Service announced that the cost of a first class stamp would increase by two cents at the beginning of January, 2011. You, like everyone else, probably reacted with disgust at yet another price increase. What if you took the news as an opportunity to reach out to your clients?

Go out and purchase 10 or 20 sheets of two cent stamps at a cost of forty cents per sheet. Address a letter to your top clients or ones you want as your top clients reminding them of the rise in rates and include one of the sheets; tell them you wanted to give them “your two cents.” Drop them in the mail the day before Christmas. I can guarantee you your competition will have sent out Christmas cards, but who do you think will make the biggest impression?

A late friend of mine used to sign all of his notes, “Remember having fun is good for you.” Those words resonate with me today more than he will ever know. Think about it, we work in a fun industry. When we are not taking the time to explore our world, we are helping people create memories and dreams that will remain with them long after their bill is paid!

Now you have a choice, you can stay in the doldrums of negativity or stop working like a canary in a coal mine.

Chuck Flagg is a regular contributor to TRO and an independent owner/operator of Cruise Holidays in Canton, GA. His website is  He can be found on Twitter @theflaggagency

  One thought on “Stop working like a canary in a coal mine

  1. Janet Engel says:

    Absolutely agree with this and thank you for posting. Even more than ever we must attempt to stay in the mindset of where we can bring added value to what we do and stay relevant! There are indeed many things that we can’t control- so move on and take care of where you CAN make a difference!

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