BASED IN: TORONTO, ON
YEARS AS A TRAVEL ADVISOR: 22 YEARS
Why did you get into the travel industry?
When I graduated high school, my full intention was to enter the medical field but then I got into a car accident and after losing a year of entering University with my friends and some serious injuries, I had time to reflect. With two older siblings in the medical field, my amazing father was the one who steered me into the travel industry, thankfully. He told me that I possessed a positive and well-spirited character and the medical field would bring me down emotionally and mentally as I progressed in age. With this insight, I always knew that my passion in life was to help people and since I was also strong in geography, it became clear that the travel industry was a good fit for my personality type.
What makes UNIGLOBE a good organization to work for?
UNIGLOBE is a large enough organization to be challenged and grow laterally from a career perspective but personalised enough to feel like a human being and not a corporate robot. The owners/ manager collectively put forth their best to provide a message of a supportive environment to all staff from a business and personal level when needed. They also allow the staff to make independent decisions which gives the staff the self-confidence needed to thrive in this busy environment. I personally never feel like I am under a microscope in my day to day life at UNIGLOBE and when problems do arise, I am given the opportunity to explain my decisions, for mutual understanding.
We hear you have a “no quit” attitude – what does this mean and how has it served you in your job?
Life is about perception and when you realize that it is a blessing to just wake up healthy every day, then any challenge can be conquered with some patience and positivity, and knowing that nothing good comes easy. This positive outlook has allowed me to treat every day I come into work as a privilege and I generate that excitement in servicing my clients to the best of my ability, to rise above the day to day adversities.
How have you grown your business?
Growing my business has meant educating myself on the latest trends, applying the best of my knowledge to my daily tasks and being a good listener to each individual’s needs. Being open to changes and challenges is the start of success. I’ve maintained client loyalty by remembering that first and foremost, my clients are people too and they rely on me in a world of alternatives. With this in my mind, I tutor them through their needs and provide them with valuable information that they cannot source out easily on their own, making them dependent on me. I always give a personal touch by inquiring on how they feel with the information I provided and if they need anything else. When dealing with people in general, it cannot be assumed that what is logical to me is logical to another, hence, best to give full clarity, leaving your clients with confidence in making their decision when booking. When servicing a client, make them feel that they are the only important client at that moment. This builds a comfort, trust and loyalty.
What do you see to be the biggest challenges you face in your job and how do you overcome it?
One of the biggest challenges is adapting to the ever-changing industry, and keeping up with the latest enhancements with suppliers and technology. I try my best to not be overwhelmed with these factors and break them down into smaller components by educating myself on what applies to my day-to-day work functions. If I have extra time, then I leap into learning things that I may need to know but it is not routine. Achieving small steps of successful learning helps to build my confidence in taking on bigger challenges.
Do you have any specialities?
With many successful years in the industry, while I am not a master in any field, I feel I have the knowledge and “know how” to source out any element pertaining to the word “travel.” My speciality is truly a passion to service; I treat each traveller as if I was their personal concierge.