Top travel counselors understand that the very nature of “sales” has changed. The internet has forever retired the retail paradigm of travel sales. The best in the field now treat themselves not as travel agents, but as travel counselors or travel consultants. This is not merely semantics, but a real difference based on the role of the travel professional. No doubt in each travel planning episode a sale is taking place. Actually, two sales are taking place. The travel supplier is selling travel. The travel professional is selling consulting services. No serious travel consultant should confuse or collapse the two sales initiatives, because to do so is to lapse back into the retail paradigm with the attendant problems of price shopping and a transactional relationship with a customer rather than a consulting relationship with a client.
Spend some time contemplating the nature of your business relationships. If you find yourself mentally emphasizing transactions over relationships, a psychological adjustment is in order. The perspective from which you approach your clients, transaction or relationship, will impact the quality of your client encounters.
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