Festive Conclusion to 2019 for Personal Travel Managers
TravelManagers has wrapped up 2019 with state meetings in six cities around Australia, each followed by a festive Christmas lunch for attending personal travel managers (PTMs), representatives from National Partnership Office (NPO), and partner suppliers.
According to Executive General Manager, Michael Gazal, the state meetings are held twice each year, with the end-of-year instalment serving as both as a ‘state of the nation’ review of 2019 and a look forward into 2020.
“2019 has been an amazing year for TravelManagers,” Gazal notes. “From winning Best Mobile Travel Advisor Network at the NTIA Awards to individual PTMs winning the NTIA “Best Mobile Travel Advisor”, CLIA’s “Home-Based Mobile Agent of the Year” and the “AVIS Travel Agent Scholarship” (the last one for the third consecutive year), we have a lot to celebrate, and the state meetings provide the ideal environment in which to do just that.”
The state meetings brought together PTMs from far and wide to hear about commercial updates, acknowledge those PTMs who had achieved the milestones of five or ten years with TravelManagers, and listen to presentations from guest suppliers. Once the business part of the day was over, PTMs were eager to mingle and enjoy their Christmas lunch together.
Gazal says PTMs are keen to take a day out to attend the meetings, in some cases travelling considerable distances to be there. Two PTMs even travelled to Melbourne from Tasmania and considered their journey well worth the effort for the chance to check in with their colleagues and enjoy the resulting Christmas atmosphere. Those who are unable to attend the meetings in person had the opportunity to take part in a webinar version instead.
“The high attendance at our end of year state meetings reflects the strong sense of family we have at TravelManagers,” Gazal explains. “Coming together to mark the end of another successful year together is important to our people, and a fun way to start the build-up to Christmas. It’s one of the highlights of our annual calendar, and everyone enjoys the chance to reconnect with friends and colleagues.”
Brisbane-based Adela Backhouse describes her decision to attend the Queensland state meeting as a “no-brainer – the NPO puts so much care and planning into our state meetings, giving us relevant updates and training to help us elevate our business success.”
“Working from home can sometimes feel isolating,” she adds, “but attending the state meetings always reminds me that I am surrounded by dedicated and wonderful people. Spending time with them allows me to walk away feeling inspired and bursting with new ideas for my business.”
The participating partner suppliers also acknowledge the value in attending the state meetings. Air New Zealand’s Fiona Lawless addressed the Queensland meeting and spoke about the airline’s latest product offerings, before joining the PTMs and other suppliers for a festive lunch.
“I am thankful for the opportunity to present the Air New Zealand product offering to so many of the Queensland TravelManagers team. The event was well organised and gave me the opportunity to meet and thank many of the team as the year comes to an end.”
Gazal notes that a record 44 PTMs were acknowledged for achieving the five-year or ten-year milestone – bringing the total number to 363.
“More than half of our PTMs have been with us for at least five years – this equates to a vast pool of knowledge and experience available to our clients. We believe this is due to the excellent systems, resources and support we have in place for our people.”
Tanya Patterson, representative for Clyde North, VIC, has been with TravelManagers for 19 years, and says she always enjoys catching up with her fellow PTMs and the NPO team.
“I really enjoyed the content of the state meeting – I loved the presentation on the NTIA and The Travel Awards submissions, along with the fireside chats, PTMs bringing up topics I was thinking about, and these topics being addressed. As always, it was great to catch up and socialise with my fellow PTMs and the NPO team.”
PTM Danielle Gonclaves, who is representative for Erskineville, NSW, attended the Sydney meeting and says she was grateful for the chance to catch up with colleagues and finish 2019 on a high note.
“I always learn something new from the presenters and my fellow personal travel managers, and I’m always inspired and motivated by this amazing company and people.”