Are You Having Trouble Getting Out of Your Own Way? Here’s How. | TravelResearchOnline


Are You Having Trouble Getting Out of Your Own Way? Here’s How.


Many are intimidated by prospects they perceive to have achieved a high level of social, career, and financial success in their respective fields.

I was raised on an artist’s commune in the 1970’s. Most of our belongings were from secondhand shops. It was embarrassing the way people looked down on us.

I was personally intimidated by many of the upstanding people in our area. They had what I wanted. But, as I got older and matured, I realized my fears were unfounded. I was the problem, not them.

The danger of “selling out of our own pockets” is that we are limited to the status perceptions we have of ourselves. If we want to regularly receive commissions with commas, we must change the paradigm.

I discovered the phenomenon of “situational status” by accident, when I was a young SCUBA Instructor. I didn’t have a name for it until recently, thanks to Oren Klaff in his excellent book “Pitch Anything”.

In a world that covets social status-based on perceived wealth, popularity and power, the Scuba Instructor ranks pretty low on the socioeconomic ladder. While it may be a dream job to many, professional vocations such as doctors, lawyers, and business executives tend to occupy an exalted status in the pecking order.

Before running away to join the cruise line, I got my first real taste of the power of situational status. I counted among my students: Professional athletes and minor celebrities – as well as a number of esteemed professors, physicians, attorneys, executives, and law enforcement officers.

I was hired to teach them a very specific skill: How to Stay Alive Under Water. If they didn’t pay attention, the outcome of the class may not be favorable. As a result, my status temporarily changed. I was no longer the guy living the life of a Jimmy Buffet song. Nope, I was the highly-skilled teacher responsible for their lives.

On my turf, the social roles temporarily changed in my favor. Make no mistake, while I may have been king of the dive boat, the moment we stepped back on the dock, the boat that was a carriage turned into a pumpkin – and we assumed our usual positions in the social hierarchy.

As travel professionals, we are often perceived in the same manner. As such, we need to be ready to seize situational status and exude our local star power when the opportunity arises.

Do not be intimidated, fearful, or in awe of your prospects, in most cases, they are just like you and me. They just happen to be known for what they do or have an impressive title, but in our world… they are a fish out of water.

Temporary status allows us to make the rules and set boundaries. We must create value using our knowledge and experience to maintain our situational status.

Want to become expendable and lose your status or star power? Make it about price. If that’s all you have to offer – you will instantly lose any credibility. They can buy price anywhere.

You may never be able to compete with some of your prospects based on the way the world applies social standing, but it can be very fun and profitable if you properly use situational status to your advantage. have you


Dan Chappelle is the leading authority on sales performance in the travel and tourism industry. His best-selling book “Get Your S.H.I.P. Together – The Wealthy Travel Agent Guide to Sales” is available worldwide on Amazon and Audible. To learn more about his proprietary sales training programs, visit

© 2020 Dan Chappelle / The Wealthy Travel Agent Academy


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