Author Archives: Mike Marchev

There are 1708 articles by Mike Marchev published on this site.


Someday Soon!

It was 7:05 am on a Thursday morning when I stumbled across a recent blog post by Seth Godin. It was titled Date Certain. Not being sure what that meant, I clicked on the link and was immediately nodding my head in agreement.

The gist of Seth’s advice that day was to “pick a date”—any date. Flip your calendar, circle a day and month in the not-to-distant future. For lack of a better term, let’s refer to this as your target date. Using this date as your deadline, what are you planning to accomplish? What will you do? Who will you meet? Who will you be? How will you be different? How will you be better? By that date. Read the rest of this entry »

200-1 Odds? Go Figure!

This year’s PGA golf tournament was both entertaining and historic. The winner, by the way, was a 200-1 longshot. Nobody in the history of the game has ever won a “major” golf tournament at his age.

The final day was an up and down seesaw of great shots, followed by less than great shots. As a matter of fact, I personally have hit a few more attractive shots than some viewed on television on that particular Sunday. What appeared to be a runaway at first glance came down to the final hole. In the end, it was Phil Mickelson who took the final bow at age 50 plus eleven months. Read the rest of this entry »

I am often asked where I get ideas for my columns. My answer without hesitation is… everywhere. A day does not pass, or a TV show perused, or an evening news soundbite heard, or a trip to the post office taken where I am not bombarded with “fodder” that has my mind spinning with ideas and some sort of reaction.

Today’s observation and resultant opinion stems from a conversation between my wife’s physical therapist and myself. We were sitting at our breakfast table while he was doing something therapeutic to my wife’s foot (bone spur).

During his last visit, I gifted this gentleman a book I wrote with tips directed toward high school graduates Read the rest of this entry »

When I set out on the journey of self-employment nearly 40 years ago, I had my first brochure professionally produced. I planned to include the piece in all of my future sales letters. I recently found an original copy, and see that my tips are just as meaningful today. Here they are verbatim for you to internalize. Read the rest of this entry »

A question I often ask myself is, “why are some travel agents more successful than others when they are all playing on the same gameboard.?” The marketplace is available to everybody. The destinations are available to everybody. The marketing tools are available to everybody. The fees are more or less competitive. So, why do some agents do so much better than others?

In most cases, the answer is simple. According to me and my 40 years of hands-on experience in the travel industry, successful agents do more, try more, fail more, get up earlier, think out of the box Read the rest of this entry »

If there is a single question I am asked more often than others, it’s: When do you stop calling on a prospect who either (1) fails to answer your emails, (2) does not return your phone calls, or (3) tells you they are not interested. This is a valid question. But it is also one that every single sales professional tussles with regardless of their industry.

Let’s look at this quandary from a different angle… by taking a walk in your prospect’s shoes. Read the rest of this entry »

Whether you follow horse racing or not, or even if you could not care less about another sports analogy, this past Saturday featured the 147th running of The Kentucky Derby. For you non-sports fans, this is a horse race held in Louisville, KY where much of the pre-race TV viewing comments are focused on the women’s hat selections in and around the track.

The odds-on favorites, where all smart betters placed their bets, were Essential Quality and Hot Rod Charlie. Rumor had it that one horse-racing aficionado placed a $2.5 million bet on Essential Quality. One would think he knew what he was doing. Read the rest of this entry »

This week’s message is important, and I hope those reading it will pause long enough to internalize the unparalleled benefits from doing this right.

I am currently experiencing bi-weekly physical therapy for a calf muscle that refuses to cooperate as it should, when preparing for a 13.1 mile run. This is the third element of the 70.3 mile Ironman competition I have been preparing for what seems like ages. Race day is a mere 17 days away, and I am beginning to question my sanity. But I digress.

Yesterday, while the PT woman was working on my calf, I found myself listening to the other patients in the room as they twisted and turned through their regimens. Although I am no spring chicken myself, most of these people had a few years on me. Read the rest of this entry »

Talk Is Cheap!

I recently asked my friend Stuart Cohen to write the Foreword to my new book titled 100 bedtime stories for travel professionals. In addition to a few kind remarks, Stuart called the reader’s attention to the fact that there is not a shortage of self-proclaimed specialists spewing information whether valid or not. This thought got me to thinking of just how valuable my personal opinion is.

For some reason that remains unclear to me, the letters LEA flashed across my mind. These letters stand for listen, evaluate, and act. Read the rest of this entry »

In Search Of the Magic Pill

As a marketing specialist who has made his living sharing ideas, experiences, proven systems and “mistakes to avoid” since 1984, there are a couple of messages I feel stronger about than others.

The subject of today’s article sits right up there near the top. There is no magic bean, potion, solution, or remedy when it comes to growing and sustaining a business in today’s competitive environment. That is not to say that you can’t adopt a few best practices as your own. And there are a number of activities you can pursue that will silently sabotage your current progress. Read the rest of this entry »

“I’ve Got This!”

I was reminded of these three words while watching a TV show a few months back. It hit a chord with me, and I decided to adopt it as my new “phrase that pays.” Stay with me as I explain the significance behind these words.

I will tell you one thing right from the start. These words and the associated “belief” that come with them have nothing to do with hoping, wishing, dreaming, and any inherent optimism you might possess. The mere utterance of these three words will do little to make your “dream” a reality.

In my case, I repeat these three words to myself when I am feeling tired, frustrated or Read the rest of this entry »

Flying Around In Circles

I have finally gotten around to writing my fifth book titled Bedtime Stories For Travel Professionals. It crossed my mind that, in order to promote my book properly, I should provide a sample chapter or two to give my potential readers a better idea as to the type of story involved. I decided on a slice of my life that I will take to my grave. It describes a lesson I learned from when I was testing for my private pilot’s license. I am sure I shared this lesson with you in years past, but it is definitely worth repeating in case you missed it. Here goes: Read the rest of this entry »

Even by my standards, today’s article may sound a bit edgy. Good. If it serves as a whack in the head and gets you off the bench and back in the game, then I am sticking to my guns.

The reference to “drinking the Kool-Aid” stems from the Jim Jones tragedy in Jonestown, Guyana back in 1978. Over 900 cult followers lost their lives after believing the words of the wrong guy. They played “follow the leader” to their demise. And in this case, the leader was less than squared away.

I’m afraid that many of you reading this article, and a great many who are not reading it, are listening to information that is not helping you get back in the game of growing your travel business. I often refer to this as “playing to the wrong audience.” Just because you have hit a few roadblocks recently, you may be beginning to feel frustrated and dejected.

To this, I simply say, “Welcome to the world of competition.” Read the rest of this entry »

Why Put Things Off?

Last week, before ending my Inner Circle sales meeting, I asked for opinions regarding my members’ most pressing concerns. I should not have been surprised when I heard the, more often than not, being related to sales. After all, without sales, you have no business. Without customers, you have nobody to service.

My mind shot to another recent response I received from those attending my Mastermind Owners Retreat in Cancun. The concern this group mentioned time and time again involved the negative behavior referred to as procrastination. In preparing for this week’s article, I decided to couple these two concerns together. Read the rest of this entry »

While you are reading today’s article, I am sitting in a Mastermind Meeting (Session Two) in Cancun, Mexico at the Grand Hotel at Moon Palace. This meeting has been on the books for over a year and has been canceled twice since Covid-19 raised its ugly head. Originally scheduled for Jamaica, we decided to hold it in Mexico for logistics’ sake.

It came as no surprise that many people thought a trip to Mexico was less than intelligent. While never underestimating the severity of this pandemic, I have always endorsed the notion that “A ship is safe in a harbor… but that is not what ships are built for.” The pieces are slowly coming together, and perhaps it is time that we begin thinking about getting out. Read the rest of this entry »

You Had Me At “Hello!”

I was reminded recently of a famous line in a movie with Tom Cruise and Renee Zellweger. The sound bite went viral with the line, “You had me at hello.” This clearly endorsed the belief that first impressions are significant. (The movie was Jerry Maguire.)

A similar situation surfaced this week. I thought it might serve as a good reminder in this week’s Cup of Mo-Jo.

Let’s see if I can share this important message without boring you to tears.

My wife and I are “thinking” about relocating to the west coast of Florida in the not too distant future. Last week we happened upon an attractive real estate development just a few miles north-east of Sarasota. We stopped in the Information Office and filled out a few forms indicating a sincere interest. Read the rest of this entry »

Getting in Position to Win

An accident on the last lap of the Daytona 500 resulted in victory for driver Michael McDowell, who had no chance to win up until then. After 498 miles of racing, this driver found himself “in position” to take advantage of a last lap pile up. The result was a trophy and a large sum of money.

The lesson was glaringly clear. If you ever want to have a chance to win as a result of the unexpected, you had better find a way to get yourself in “position.” Opportunities often evaporate as fast as they appear. You must be able to respond in a flash before giving your opponent room to rebound. Read the rest of this entry »

Who’s Next?

There is one thing that travel entrepreneurs can never lose sight of: what is true today may, not be true tomorrow. If this past year has not delivered that message to you in spades, then I do not think you have been paying attention. But yesterday’s news is just that… yesterday’s news. How you choose to spend your time today will largely determine the size of your smile tomorrow.

There is another fact we all can agree with, and that is there is not a shortage of “advice” coming from the mouths, offices, and websites of industry gurus.

If there was a single word however, that I would recommend as your next tattoo, it would be the word “prospecting.” Read the rest of this entry »

Adjust Your Attitude

It took me more years than I’d like to admit, but I eventually came to the realization that your body follows your head. Said another way, your success is in your mind. As you thinketh, you becometh. Don’t quote those last five words—I believe I might have exercised a little poetic license with the spelling. The meaning is right on the money. Get Your Thinking Straight.

I have always been fascinated by the “placebo effect.” This is where 100 patients are given a white pill to cure a medical problem. Fifty of those patients receive legitimate medication, while the other fifty receive nothing more than a sugar pill (the “placebo.”) Yet, a significant percentage Read the rest of this entry »

The seed for today’s article was planted by Royal Caribbean’s Vicki Freed during a recent interview at an Inner Circle Sales Meeting. Vicki reminded us that we were all still being held up waiting for the light to turn green. She was referring to the moment people will begin traveling again.

Naturally, this thought got me thinking of an analogy I could share with you this week. I think I have one you can identify with. Read the rest of this entry »

The swimming pool in my condominium complex has reopened again with certain restrictions pertaining to social distancing. I slip into the water by 9 am every morning and, with one exception, have the pool to myself. My swimming buddy is Frankie “Cheech,” who spends the summer months in New Jersey. (Maybe that is why we understand each other so well while sharing a similar sense of humor.)

The other day Frankie called my attention to four words he learned while in the service. (Rest easy. They are acceptable in social settings.) We have come to refer to these words as the “Four D’s.” I have positioned them as my guiding reminders. They keep me on track, and help me stay focused while I train for an upcoming event. (I’m preparing my aging body for an Ironman 70.3 Triathlon in May.) Read the rest of this entry »