“What Matters Now” – A Must Read for Experience Merchants | Travel Research Online


“What Matters Now” – A Must Read for Experience Merchants

Once in a while something comes across my desk with uncanny timing – just the right message at just the right time – lighting a fire under my rear end and getting me moving with renewed energy and confidence. Such a document is What Matters Now – a compilation of thoughts by the best thinkers of the blogosphere. Subtitled “Big Thoughts & Small Actions Make a Difference”, this e-book, distributed free of charge, wasconceived by Seth Godin and edited by Ishita Gupta.

Each page is dedicated to a specific area of thought by particular blogger – some are well known – some not so – about 75 in total. All entries make for inspiring reading, as well as being highly predictive and informative.

Several sections stood out as particularly relevant to our industry.

Example – Robyn Waters, an Ambassador of Trend and author of Trendmaster’s Guide, talks about trends and counter trends on a page titled Adventure.  One trend: “we have become small-minded, quick to judge and slow to understand”. The counter trend: “leaving the screens of our virtual world momentarily behind and indulging our senses with a real world adventure.

Ms. Waters even quotes St. Augustine who said: “The world is a book and those who don’t travel read only one page.”  She sums up by advising that we “heed the call of adventure, blaze new trails. Cross continents. Escape the routine. Invest in future memories.. Keep a journal, for journeys are midwives of thought.  Make for the horizon and meet new people. Navigate the unknown. Pursue a road less traveled. Sail away from the safe harbor.”

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Given the advice above, one might want to give Ms. Waters the additional title of Ambassador of Travel.

On the page labeled “Mesh”, Lisa Ganksy – another trend expert points out that “We have quietly yet dramatically changed our thinking about lifestyle. Quality of life is moving distinctly away from what we own.”She goes so far as to pose the question “Is it the end of ownership as we know it?”If she is correct and owning things is becoming of diminishing importance, then what could be increasing in importance? Clearly it is experiences and relationships.

Ms. Gansky continues on, saying “discover how your business can inspire customers in a world where access trumps ownership.” I think Gansky is on to something with that last statement. And most of us in the leisure travel business are ready and willing to ride that horse in the direction it is going.

On the page labeled “Knowing”, Dan Roam offers up a hand drawn illustration titled HOW PAINT DRIES! The illustration’s sub-heading? “There is no such thing as boring knowledge. There is only boring presentation.”

Additional doodles from Mr. Roam include captions like –

·       Amazing knowledge + terrible presentation = sleep

·       ‘Who cares’ knowledge + great presentation = WOO HOO!

The pithiness of the content of Mr. Godin and friends’ unique publication continues with the page where Gina Trapani blogs about productivity.  Ms. Trapani points out that getting things done is not the same as making things happen. Her advice: Don’t worry too much about getting things done. Make things happen.

Anyone may access the full e-book at http://sethgodin.typepad.com/files/what-matters-now-2.pdf  It is free.

Here is my suggestion – 

  • Page through the PDF file online.
  • Identify the pages that speak loudest to you.
  • Print those pages out.
  • Post them where you will see them daily.
  • Glancing at these brief but profound bits of insight does a better job of gettingme going in the morning than caffeine.  And mornings when I combine the two…well…buckle up, Lucille. We’ve got a Big Day ahead!


What a wonderful time to be an experience merchant!

Lyn Edwin Cathey is a  veteran of 25 years in the travel industry – holding positions within the industry such as trainer, educator, agent, consultant, agency owner/manager and product specialist. For 15 years prior to joining the travel industry Lyn worked as a full time entertainer/comedian, performing on banjo & guitar – often as a featured act on cruise ships. He created and currently maintains several websites, including  http://TripFinder.com.

  One thought on ““What Matters Now” – A Must Read for Experience Merchants

  1. Kasey says:

    WOW! Just as you said – the right message, right on time! Thanks for this!

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