We all make mistakes and I, in fact, excel at the art. Because of my propensity to err, I also learned early on the value of an apology. Accepting responsibility, taking the blame and apologizing are skills neglected to our detriment. I’m going to refer you to John’s column for this part of my own series so I don’t end up having to apologize to John for stepping on his article!
That gives me the opportunity to speak to a couple of other phrases you should be hearing yourself say frequently.
How often do we say “Thank You” to our clients? If we recognize the significance of those words, shouldn’t we be a bit more liberal with their use ourselves? Clients are the very reason our profession exists. Travel consulting is an almost purely service business. Yet, we sometimes feel as though we have done a client a favor when we work on their behalf, rather than the other way around!
It adds to our character to take time to say “Thanks for letting me assist you”. “Thank you for your business”. “Thank you for stopping in.” Demonstrate your appreciation in visible, memorial ways. Write letters or send postcards welcoming clients home and thanking them for doing business with you. Remember their birthdays. Send them flowers on their anniversary. It doesn’t have to be expensive – it just has to be sincere and profoundly grateful. Don’t stop there, however. You are surrounded by people to whom “Thank You” is due. Not one of us is truly self-made. We owe others debts with no ceiling, with no repayment expected. We are who we are as the result of a thousand graceful acts performed by others stretching back into our childhood and even beyond. Parents, family, teachers, co-workers, mentors and total strangers have conspired to place you where you are.
This 365 Marketing Tip is sponsored by:
Want to enhance your creativity? Say “What if…?” more often and encourage those around you to do the same. When you encourage your work associates to explore possibility, you introduce new opportunities and ways of thinking into your environment. If creative and spontaneous thought is an essential ingredient in your travel practice, you are more likely to WOW your clients with the type of thinking so rare it has little competition. Regular brain-storming sessions allow people to fully express themselves by bringing new perspectives to problem solving and innovation. Our established ways of thinking certainly put us where we are, but chances are you began your travel career with a creative vision outside of your normal thought processes. The netherworld of creative thought and possibility should be often visited.
To the extent your work associates participate in decision making, the easier the entire process of buy-in and adoption becomes. By the way, the same principles work at home as well!