Sarah Smith, national account manager at Hoseasons, on her new favourite festive tipple, losing her car in a multi-storey car park and singing along to Shakin’ Stevens
Describe your typical week
Every week is different, which is what keeps it so much fun. It can range from attending training roadshows and events to organising agent-on-location days and group meetings, as well as all the back office tasks such as marketing, preparing presentations, and the most important thing: coming up with great agent incentives.
How big is the sales team?
We are a small agency sales team across the Hoseasons and James Villa brands. It’s my colleague Ryan Carroll and I out on the road and we are supported by our fabulous ladies in the office-based sales team – just seven of us in total.
What do you keep in the glove compartment?
A secret stash (well, not so secret any more) of chocolate and sweet treats – you never know when you might get stuck in traffic and need a sweetie fix.
What’s your favourite festive tune?
All of them. I’ve had the Christmas radio stations on since November. I suppose if I had to choose one, it would be Shakin’ Stevens’ Merry Christmas Everyone. I’m an 80s gal.
What Christmas snack keeps you going on the road?
It has to be a cheeky mince pie and a Costa latte – with an extra shot of espresso, of course.
Do you do anything special on your sales visits in the run up to Christmas?
Any training, events or visits are always accompanied by some festive goodies to give away – we love to reward our agents for their continued support.
What is the best festive welcome you’ve been offered by an agency?
We get lots of invites to Christmas parties and lunches and will try to attend as many as we can. Any welcome that involves the offer of a loo stop and a brew is most welcome any time of the year.
What’s your favourite festive tipple?
Following the Tipto general meeting in November, we popped to the Christmas markets in Birmingham, where I had a hot chocolate with Baileys for the first time. That’s now my festive drink of choice.
What’s the best question a travel agent has ever asked you?
Would you like another brew? Surely that’s always the best question. Another good question was from an agent who follows my Facebook page who asked if they could have my job.
What’s the most lost you have ever got?
I always get lost, even with a satnav. And it’s not just in the car that I get lost – I’ve been known to lose my actual car too. I once spent an hour walking around a multi-storey car park trying to find it. It really helps if you’re looking in the right car park, though.
What key messages do you try to convey in an agent visit?
We always like to keep our agents up-to-date with our latest sales campaigns as well as incentives and competitions. We’ll share current booking trends and suggest ideas to help them increase their business.
Which is your favourite destination that your company sells?
Anything with a hot tub works. My favourite destination for James Villas would have to be Menorca. It’s a beautiful island with amazing history and stunning places to stay.
What’s your advice for agents who don’t currently sell your product but are keen?
For Hoseasons, all necessary information is on our website. Agents who complete the training before December 31, 2017, will be entered into a prize draw for the chance to win a boating break.
Get in touch: Email Sarah at firstname.lastname@example.org