Neisha is a luxury travel consultant who has been with Holidaysplease for almost 3 years. She decided to switch to home-working after 23 years of working in travel. She is a very valuable addition to our team and a very strong woman.
Her first months in the new homeworking role did prove to be a bit of a challenge, but the support she received from head office, along with the free customer leads we always provide our homeworkers, set Neisha up for success.
“When I first started at HP I found it quite hard as you have to work on your conversations, ask the right questions and cement the relationship between yourself and the customer. You also have to realise that the customer will shop around and your biggest competition is other online travel companies. It’s also difficult to adjust from being people-facing to online, you almost have to go back to basics and think: what would you think as a customer and want from your travel consultant?”
Going from a customer facing role to homeworking does require flexibility and adaptability in your approach to work. But having support from a team of experts who are at your disposal 24/7 also makes the transition a lot easier.
“I am forever changing my working style and mixing it up to suit each individual customer. At the end of the day everyone is unique and they all have specific requirements that are important to them for their holidays.
The best thing about my job is the support from HQ, we are all human and sometimes make mistakes, the office team have always been there to assist and advise where they can. Ultimately, it’s my customer and they booked with me, so it’s me that needs to deal with the situation and rectify any errors should there be any.
I remember when I first started calling team leader Sue as I was crying under my desk as a customer had lied to me and booked elsewhere. I have toughened up now! You have to be one step ahead of customers and ask the right questions, get the correct information and deliver it well. I continue to learn new things in this ever-changing industry.”
More recently, Neisha has suffered from serious health issues, but as she is a fighter, she did not let that stop her from working and living the best life she can.
“2019 has been an extremely challenging year for me personally. I started off being ill at the beginning of the year and was diagnosed with a serious illness in May 2019. This has been devastating for me and my family. I have undergone 2 major surgeries and am still battling with health issues, but I am a fighter and will continue to fight. This in turn has made me appreciate every customers requirements and needs a lot more. It has also inspired me that even when you hit really hard times in life, quiet months, etc, you can build your business and get those bookings in.”
Over these few years here at Holidaysplease, Neisha has managed to build her business up and create a steady client base.
“I’ve built my business up by asking for referrals when my clients book and sending them business cards in the post. I run incentives to win goods throughout the year. My big incentive which my clients love is the ‘Win a set of Hard Shell Luggage’. I usually run this incentive for 3 months, it creates a lot of business for me.”
Neisha gives us her opinion on what qualities a good travel agent must posses:
“You get out of it what you put in, so having a good work ethic helps. I spend a majority of my time in my office with my chocolate Labrador making calls, emails, texts, thinking of new incentives, sending mail shots. Know your products, I have been in the industry for a long time, products change and so do destinations due to climate change, so I regularly take my brochures to bed and read them, I do this to improve my knowledge, after all no one knows everything.
Always give honest advice and if you do not know the answer to a question that’s put to you, let the client know you’ll find out and get back to them.
I am also very well-travelled and try to have between 5-8 holidays a year. It’s good for the mind and soul.”
The advice that Neisha would give to a travel agent who is considering homeworking is:
“You have to work extremely hard, stand out from the crowd, put the hours in, build relationships with all your clients, try new things and if you find you’re struggling sit back and make lists of why and start again with a new approach. Be honest with all your customers, shout about the bespoke personalised service your client will get with you.”
Supporting and helping each other at Holidaysplease will make your business stronger and grow. In light of the recent events of the Thomas Cook collapse always provide positive support and help to all in travel.
Also to all customers that may not have booked with you? They may book with you, never look back.”