The latest round of bi-annual state meetings for TravelManagers, who is Australia’s leading home-based network of travel professionals, has just wrapped up at its final location in Brisbane.
Taking place in seven locations around the country and attended by a total of 251 personal travel managers (PTMs), this latest round was also the first time that a fully-fledged state meeting has been held in Tasmania, where the company now has nine PTMs.
TravelManagers’ Executive General Manager, Michael Gazal, attended all seven meetings over the course of just over two weeks, and described the meetings as inspiring and stimulating. He believes the attendance figures reflect the high regard in which the meetings are held by both the national partnership office (NPO) and the PTMs.
“We’ve been holding these state meetings with our PTMs twice a year for the last eight years, as well as an annual national conference and regular intra-state meetings. The consistent attendance confirms that our PTMs value these events as opportunities to network with their colleagues and keep up to date with developments in our business.”
Carl Retschlag, representative from East Perth, agrees.
“I came away so inspired – it reminded me of why I am in this job and why TravelManagers is the place I want to be. I am raring to go and have come away with some great new marketing ideas that I want to put into action as soon as I can.”
One of the key objectives of this most recent round of state meetings was to update PTMs on TravelManagers’ brand implementation and development of supporting collateral.
“The brand refresh has had such a positive reception from both clients and industry partners, and the state meetings provide the perfect platform for sharing feedback and ongoing development,” says Gazal.
The meetings are also an opportunity to brief PTMs on key technology updates, including the transition to Tramada NextGen for the back and middle offices, and on two new technology system developments that are to be introduced to the PTM network in the second half of this year.
“Having so many of our PTMs gathered together at these State Meetings also gave us a great opportunity to report back on our trialling of Amadeus Connect, which we are now rolling out to our full network of PTMs,” Gazal says. “We are the first and initially the only travel brand in Australia to have access to this new, fully online platform so it’s an exciting time and it added further buzz to the meetings.”
Gazal believes one of the great strengths of the TravelManagers model is the strong focus on PTMs who support each other and share knowledge and experience. That opinion is one that’s shared by Karin Tunbridge, representative from Craigmore in South Australia.
“The Trade Secrets session was a really good opportunity to network and share tools of the trade. It was so great to catch up with everyone for another informative and fun filled day”, she says.
Not all PTMs can attend their state meetings in person due to conflicting business or personal commitments and those who are unable to be there can take part in a webinar so that they are still part of the team process and can be updated on new developments.
In the last twelve months, 48 PTMs reached their five-year milestones with TravelManagers, making a total of 115 who have been with TravelManagers for five years or longer. The new five-year inductees each received a commemorative plaque and a bottle of champagne to mark their achievement.
“We know it’s a big deal for our PTMs to spend a day away from their offices, so it’s important that our state meetings are not just informative and educational. We want to make sure that we have fun too, and include time to celebrate our achievements,” says Gazal.
For more information or to speak to someone confidentially about TravelManagers please contact Suzanne Laister on 1800 019 599.