UPDATED: December 3, 2011
With the breaking story that Tourism Minister Sealy took 135 Ministry employees to Guyana for a weekend “retreat”, we were reminded of this recent post by Adrian Loveridge.
As far as we at BFP are concerned…
Sealy blew it on the optics alone. If he thinks that the public will support this “retreat” in Guyana, he’s out of his mind.
Instead, he should have had groups of employees staying at hotels in Barbados and then getting together at the Hilton or other venues to discuss whatever it is they are going to discuss. As Adrian said in his original piece, he seldom sees anyone from the government at his place and he’s not alone.
Unless Guyana’s tourism product is so much better than ours that the intent was to show everyone at the Ministry how things are supposed to be done?
In which case, we are really in trouble.
Original post first published October 18, 2011…
“It’s almost as if the key decision makers have tried to make tourism more complicated and moved away from the simple things that actually make it work very well.”
Tourism MATTERS – Sharing a business formula that works
by Adrian Loveridge - small hotel owner
Back in the nineteen seventies, after working in Canada, I returned to the United Kingdom, taking two temporary non-travel related jobs to establish enhanced credibility for the purpose of obtaining a house mortgage. Both were important learning experiences which I have never regretted.
The first was working as a salesman in a branch of a high-end consumer electronics retailer selling audio equipment products made by manufacturers that included Bang & Olufsen and Roberts. The manager instilled a valuable lesson that has stayed with me for life. His view was that if you are ever going to effectively sell anything, whatever it was, that you had better know everything possible about it.
I think he sensed a genuine interest and allowed me to take, what at that time, were very expensive pieces of equipment home at night and weekends to familiarise myself with their features.
Months when later I formed a tour operator company, this acquired wisdom formed an integral part of the business masterplan. Irrespective of the product or service, intimate knowledge of every aspect is critical, if you are going to fully understand your marketplace and prospective customer.
Surprisingly then, even after owning and operating a hotel for nearly twenty four years, I can count on two hands with fingers to spare, the number of senior Barbados Tourism Authority officials, both locally and overseas, Ministers of Tourism, Permanent Secretaries and other leading figures within the public sector that have visited our property. Continue reading