Having four kids aged six and under, getting married and launching a new business in the same year didn’t phase supermum Sinead.
She was also working full time as a personal trainer running her own fitness business at the time.
But after six months, Sinead decided to pass the responsibility of her fitness business over to her colleague, and concentrate on travel full time and now business is booming.
“I knew if I invested the time, I could grow the business and it’s definitely worked,” says Sinead.
After devoting more time to networking, posting on social media and attending fairs and exhibitions, she received 43 enquiries the week following Boxing Day.
And a £16k booking through an old friend. And the good news is she still has total flexibility to be there for her family.
“A lot of mums feel they have to go back to the same old 9-5 job, but you can’t put a price on being there for your kids,” says Sinead, whose youngest child is only 16 months old.
“In my old job when I had my first son, I would drop him off at the childminders, pick him up when it was dark, feed him, pop him in the bath and then do it all again. And when I was running my fitness business I would be dashing off to work most nights in the week. It just didn’t work for us”.
Sinead says she can now take her kids to school every morning and doesn’t have to drop them off at breakfast club as she can do the majority of her work during the day. Or, when the children have gone to bed at night.
“If I have to work after they’ve gone to bed, so be it. It doesn’t affect their life and I’m doing something I love.”
Sinead had never worked in travel before (apart from being an air stewardess in the early 2000s) and the idea had never entered her mind until a friend told her to book her family holiday via Not Just Travel consultant Ben Casey.
“We looked into what Ben did, we were curious and wondered if we could make it work for ourselves,” said Sinead.
Sinead joined The Travel Franchise on our most affordable package but is now looking to upgrade to Elite for bigger commission shares and other benefits which include access to cruise Business Development Managers who are on hand to offer advice whenever you need it.
Having never worked as a travel consultant before, it took time to get to know agent booking systems but she can always ring our head office for support.
Sinead’s recent success is partly due to growth in repeat bookings due to her incredible customer service.
For big bookings, she organises small gifts such as personalised beach bags for children and she always has her mobile at hand for clients who experience problems while on holiday.
“One client got to the airport and couldn’t find their email with their trip details, so they texted me and I resent it immediately. A normal travel agent wouldn’t have provided their mobile number.”
Another customer travelled to Mumbai and broke her foot. The next stage of the trip was Mauritius, so Sinead phoned the hotel to request a more accessible room.
“Eventually you see that you build a base of loyal clients who will come back and book and refer others,” says Sinead.
“It can be scary when you give up your (previous) job and the networking can, at times, feel fruitless, but clearly it worked, and the phone hasn’t stopped ringing.”
“I am really lucky to do something I’m passionate about.”
Sinead has a lot of other marketing tactics up her sleeve and is looking at a car wrap with her logo, but one of the most innovative is the customised hoodies she’s ordered for her four kids.
They read: “If you want to book a holiday, book with my mummy.”