If you have been reading The 365 Guide for any length of time, you know that I feel the concept of a Mission Statement is important for a travel agent to understand and employ. A mission statement is a clear and succinct statement of the aspirations of a travel agent as those aspirations relate to clients. Underneath the mission statement is a set of core values that are important to the agent. The moral and ethical underpinnings of the agent, their way of relating to clients, their expectations of performance are all encapsulated in a single statement. It’s a statement to the world of the principles for which the travel agent stands. Below, you will find tools to help you build your own. Bonus -it will be the foundation for your 2014 marketing plan.
The mission statement has a very important purpose – it provides a benchmark for every corporate action, for every marketing effort, for every decision the company makes. Your mission statement states what you believe in and establishes how you want others to know and think of you. If an act is consistent with the mission statement, then it passes the test for consideration. If an act is inconsistent with the mission statement, then it is discarded. With a mission statement, you will have a signal with which you can align all of your marketing efforts. Without a mission statement, you run the risk of serious inconsistencies, of confusing your clients, of appearing inauthentic.
Your mission statement should motivate you and those with whom you work. Your mission statement should inspire and comfort your clients.
Why are you a travel counselor? Can you provide a short, succinct answer to that question? It is almost a trick question, because if the answer is about your love of travel, your passion for travel, the many places you have been, then we are probably on the wrong track. Your love and passion for travel are certainly important reasons for being in the travel industry, but those qualities don’t speak to why you chose to assist others in their travel ambitions. The more clearly that you can define your core mission, the values you represent as they relate to your clients, the easier the task of representing your travel practice authentically. Your mission is the touchstone for all of your client communications and corporate decision making – its value cannot be overstated.
Can you articulate a brief summary your company’s mission? Can you describe in a short, clear fashion what you do as a travel consultant? How your clients benefit from your services? What your unique selling point is? Can you communicate your company’s most important characteristics clearly and concisely? Can you do it without resorting to industry jargon or cliché? Spend a few moments writing your message down and improving your ability to communicate it. Read it aloud and practice it until it is a creed that you can easily and naturally repeat.
Here is TRO’s mission statement: “To enhance the lives of travel professionals.” Note how our mission statement is phrased in terms of our clients, not in terms of TRO. Be client-centric in forming your mission statement.
Clarity in your mission statement is the absolute requisite to authentic marketing.
1. Read the materials below. Download our Mission Statement Worksheet and develop a mission statement of your own.
2. Review some past 365 Guide Articles on Mission Statements
3. Some Mission Statements worth reviewing (note the emphasis on the customer experience!):