Lodge & Tourism Growth Strategies Super Star Series | Tour Operator Marketing | Lodge Marketing & Tourism Operations | Travel Business Success Podcast #67

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Travel business success radio podcast episode number sixty seven. Are you a tour operator travel business has grown or wants to grow a lot today? Special guests from Alaska can tell you about how he started as a small fishing guide company with one boat with no experience in business or marketing struggled in the early days learned to turn his website into a marketing weapon that really converted prospects into bookings and has since grown over the last ten or fifteen years to a company doing well into seven figures on two lodges in his one of the top fishing guide and lodges in Alaska in spite of having about three hundred competitors. So join me today with my special guest, we're going to look at a marketing and branding specifically about how to get your website to sell on how he uses that. And we're gonna talk about growth, and scaling strategies and the critical topics that can be successor failure around locating hiring staff training and retention. Enjoy. Welcome to travel business success podcasts. Teaching you how to start and grow and succeed with your travel business marketing and career brought to you by adventure biz success dot com and your host, Tim Warren. If you're looking for free tips, tools and resources by industry experts to improve your bottom line you've come to the right place. Join him now with more interviews trends. Best practices and seasoned advice to help us succeed. Hey, good day. Folks. It's tourism, Tim, Warren hair with another exciting episode of tourism marketing TV and for you listening on the podcast travel business success. I am honored and fortunate to have a returning guest Kukui anthem Alaska today Jimmy with Jimmy Jack fishing day. Jimmy. Hey, how're you doing Tim outstanding while you, and I were talking a couple of weeks ago and kind of catching up I hadn't talked with you in quite a quite a few years, and I was just so pleased to hear about your your progress and your growth and your success as a tour operator, and it was so exciting. And some of the things that you were sharing. I thought would be relit round marketing in how to handle a management and staff and hiring and retention. And when you when you have got a much bigger team was so exciting. I thought we would we should we should share that. Because I know it would be helpful for others. So appreciate you being here today. Sure. Yeah. I'm excited. Fantastic. So why don't you give folks listening or watching today just a brief background of when you started and a little bit about what you guys do. Okay. And so I started a fishing guide business in nineteen ninety five with just a boat mainly because I wanted to be on the water kind of passion a mind to be on the water, and we now so we were fishing guide service for quite a while. And now, we run two fishing lodges in Alaska, and I. Basically, we sell I see it as two products, we sell fishing, lodge packages, and we still sell our day fishing charters. The packages branch off in two different products, just because the lodges are tiered. So we have a kind of are all inclusive. Find dining a fishing lodge in the mail. So have an original lodge, which is well, our I the one I I was talking about is our Alaska SeaScape lodge all inclusive and find dining same packages with the same charters. And then we have our my my fishing lodge original fishing lodge, which we call Jimmy Jackson, Alaska lodge, and that is a little more affordable just because we don't do dinners. And so we've we've always done just a breakfast and lunch, and we are on the road system. So makes it pretty easy to do that. So that's kind of what we do those products. Great. Well, I wanted to give people some further expand on the significance of this for thirteen years ago. You start with one boat yourself is was was Tupelo Twenty-three years ago. Twenty is okay. Right. Maybe five clearly. Clearly. And but one boat one one guy yourself and a passion to share what what you love. And I know that this is some goes way back with you you and your dad and coming up to Alaska and now and no lodge. Now, you have to lodges, I believe you said that you looked like you were going to have twenty three staff this year approximately how many boats we have this year will have ten. It's a dozen boats books. Yeah. We didn't. I didn't ask you about this beforehand, and you can share. However, you want to share on this. But let's say your first year and business approximately how much revenue to Brecon that. I I remember because I was my dad was helping me with that. And you know, it was the question of do. I get a summer job or do I do this? And I just wanted my own boat, basically. So I remember at the end of the summer we had so I had made thirteen thousand dollars, and we had spent fourteen thousand dollars in my dad said, well, that's great because you only lost a thousand. I said that's not great. They said this is business. And I said, well, I, you know, I don't I don't really like that. You know, I work my butt off, you know. And so that went on for four years though. I mean, it just like that. And you know, as you you grow and learn that's kind of kind of the norm. I guess. Yeah. Well, it's it's well, it's a really good perspective. And a lot of people. I think that they just make this assumption that, wow, I'm really an expert at fishing or I know kayaking in this area better than anybody, a master mountain biker and everybody is gonna just fall in love with my place. Everybody's just gonna wanna come here because I'm so wonderful in. Yes. And no one knows about you. Others that there's that. That's what Mark you are probably good at it and great at it. But no one knows about you. Yes. That's the way the marketing and sales comes in. They're going to talk about today, folks. And you don't have to give exact numbers, but just give us an idea of what sort of revenues. We're expecting this year. I believe you said you were well into the seven figures. Yeah. Yeah. We're well in seventeen years now. And you know, it's something that you know, I think my my goal was went in growing with the second largest could have help in the office. You know, it was it was like, okay. If I get bigger I can have more help, and it actually did turn out that way. But yeah, we're a lot bigger in a lot more. Now have new issues, right? Yes, we'll talk about those two but profitable. That's and that's they really good thing. And I think what you just shared his the key thing is that as one scales. The issues that you have is a startup are can be radically different than when you're a growing scaling company. And this is the solutions. You used initially actually might contribute to the problem. On. Hats would definitely contribute to the pro. So let me let me guess you're out in the keanae river, one of the premier of salmon fishing, a places in the world. Let me guess you had no competition when you started right, right? Yes. Only about I don't know three hundred and fifty others. Yeah. Gosh. Yeah. It was fifty and how many how many our there are now if you've guides and outfitters lodges, and so we kind of I have numbers more on just the guides which gives you kind of an idea on the keanae river. And of course, we we are all over the Kenneth insulin now, but. Since the recession. Oh, wait. There's river dropped down. And so we were up to four hundred thirty in oh seven as far as guide permits on the keen ever. Now. We're down to about two eighty which is been a pretty stable number. It's been it's been staying right around there. And that gives you an idea of the industry it has had has gunned down a little bit. And and, but that's just you know, that's good. It's normal who that that's interesting. I think a lot of people would kind of freak out if they think about having that many competitors better. That's just on general rivers. Oh, if he were Loic Alaskan general, which is just a outdoor capital hub of the world. How many hundreds or thousands might we'd be talking about? Yeah. I, you know, I don't even know. I don't want to know. I've never really I kind of. I know it's a lot. It's just it is competitive. And when you when you think about the fact that we're comp-. Keating in on a few platforms. You know on the internet. That's even makes it even more daunting. Well, and and what in the one of the things that sets you apart. And I think kind of how we Ridgely mad was a shift in your business development and marketing because you you in order to deliver the incredible service and shirk share the beauty that I know the river, and the setting is you have to be able to get the word out, then let's just get it out. But convince people that you're a knowledgeable expert guide you rent great trips safeties atop concern, and they're and they're gonna they're gonna bring back a lifetime of memories, and maybe some real big fish too. Yeah. Yeah. We, you know, you have to you have to have a niche or, you know, something that's just I guess more personalized icy it as it's just what's what's my business. It's my business. So it is competing. But really, no one's no one's me. And no one's might team. And no one's our culture. So it really is different. Who that's what I kind of had to get, you know. I know you help. Me a lot with differentiating. And also not not just not that we weren't different. We were already different. But it was we were marketing that were Delon anybody. So what would that's that's just touch on that first second. So we're kind of kind of reflecting on the past and kind of days and and learning opportunities. What do you think about marketing of of your product in? And what what is what did you think about marketing, then or what what is, you know, about marketing then or thought you know, that that you've raised radically different now. Well. I think I knew it was so different now. Well, I guess then it would have been that in in the very beginning. I didn't really know anything. I didn't even know, you know, I remember my mom she made, brochures and put them at the local one of the local hotels, and she's like we gotta get we gotta get to advertising out there. And I was like well people want to you know, she said I said that and I remember saying that if people wanna fish with me, you know, they'll call and she thought, okay. Well, she had been in real estate. So she knew and I remember folding brochures for her as a kid, you know, and in mass just folding, brochures. I don't remember when. But yeah, it was something that she knew. And when also nice I start my first, you know, subcontracting Alana started getting my first my clients, and they were calling from this brochure at this hotel. Well that worked and it was just these little she she had made them out of cards are like yellow and black. You know? And and so that was the thing that I didn't know the being I just did not understand that you had to somehow get your name out there who. It. It's it's a it's a common problem. Did you ever see the movie with Kevin Costner called field of dreams? Yeah. Yeah. Exactly. And I I kind of the analogy is the line and in his movie was if if I build it if I build this. Come field. They'll come these. Great. And I had that I think that works. There's a lot of that out in tours world. If I if I just start my business, of course, clients gonna call. Yeah. And if I would have done it over, obviously, I would have said, okay. I am going to you know, I'm spending money on fuel and on my boat payment, and on my gear, and you know, those things those little things I would have said, well, what am I spending on advertising? I mean, no one asked me that question. And you know, my mom should've said you have to spend something on advertising, but she was trying to do it for free, basically. And I just didn't you know, I didn't know anything about business. It's a it's a farming project folks that well, so this is a great. It's a great segue into kind of a marketing, and branding, which is one of the things which was really neat when we were talking a couple of weeks ago at ask you, well, what does that you most enjoy doing now? That's you've got this much bigger company. And just yeah, you went from knowing nothing, and even that you even had to market advertise to now, it's something that you you really understand better you enjoy and you reaping the fruits of of your knowledge, and and your your labor, which is fantastic. So for folks who are listening to this podcast. I'm going to encourage you to go over to a trouble business success dot com that we're gonna we're gonna try to take a share my screen in the video right now. And we're gonna take a look at Jimmy's website, and we're going to be kind of going through it. Can you see that what the website now? Jimmy. Yeah. Great. So what what we thought we'd do folks on in the world of marketing, and branding is. Just cut as what would you say that we're gonna we're gonna look at his website. But before we jump into that. Would you look at the your top three methods methods that are increasing your quality leads enter generating bookies. What are they for you? So. Well, you you mean as far as marketing goes. Yeah. You know, I mean of all the different things you can do I'm assuming it's still not a handle. There's no longer hand folded for I I'm gonna. No, no. I mean, it's definitely. Yeah. It's you know, the return on the investment is definitely digital. I think you know. Of course, Facebook is a big player now will and in. The search engines are are big players. I think those are the main ones, but having the website. So that's your main contact 'cause even if they talked to me at the safari club show, they're gonna still go back and look at the website. And so the website has to communicate exactly who we are. And and and most importantly, I think is our credibility. I think that's what you know. That's something that you can't you can build and it keeps building. And that's what I like about credibility. Indeed, the so, well, we'll we'll jump off on that point one of. I think you and I first met when you bought lie towards the marketing. Success course, gosh, I don't know. Yeah. Eight years ago ten years to really really know. But. But are you at served with me that that learning about credibility, or or it's now come more commonly called social proof, and that people know people when they go to your website, which is your your store for into the world folks is they want they want to know that that you've been around for awhile in that that that they can trust you to have that they're making a good investment in in their vacation, whether you're doing fishing or you've got a equal lodge in in in Bolivia. It doesn't really matter or your travel agent or even a destination. Everybody has choices. So let's let's take let's talk about credibility at and let's and maybe what I thought it'd be fun. Jim is to is to look at some of the credibility or social proof elements on your on your website and look at how you've represented them. And let's first talk about the sending that'll -bility statement, what you have on your website in very very, very concise way, which I like and once you point that out too. Us. So my my basically my credibility that I have put on there. I had to choose because there's a lot of credibility statements that we have that we we can put in other advertising, but on the website. We don't want to have it too busy. So I chose of course advisors a big player in our industry for reviews, and we're on our fourth that doesn't show it on this one, but we have four certificate of excellences fourteen through seventeen. And then if we get the one this year, which we've most likely will we'll be in the hall of fame, and that will be a hall of fame banner, which will even increase it. And that's huge because that's our that's our show media. I guess that's our, you know, some some business it's yelp. If you're in restaurants in some it's Google plus, but that's our review score. And then twenty three years, we kind of just keep changing that one because we've been been in business that long, and I think it's important that people know that you know, that we aren't a fly by night and that we've been doing this. And so we have. A lot of credibility that way. And we, you know, I think the main thing like you said is I wanted to show that they can trust us. So I guess I'm saying that to, you know, people also need to know that you know, if you're doing business, honestly in your you are credible. Then you know, that's where it starts. But if you're not then, you know, putting all the credibility points out there. You could isn't gonna matter. You know, did it, and I just want to point out a couple follow on a couple of things that you said these I couldn't agree more with what you said about the turf advisory. It is it is one of the most influential elements or and it could be yelp to or or some other main social media things. But when it comes to people are choosing between a couple of different outfitters or guides or a tells they're looking at Tripadvisor reviews, and so I call these credibility icons, and you've done a great job and position them folks knows this is the whole page you this is the very first green shot. You would see whether you're on era on a desktop or a phone. You're going to see these kind of Billy icon's right away super important. Folks. And so good job at placing them in a very conspicuous location. I believe you've got you've got a few more of credibility type elements here. We'll we'll we'll look at damage is an icon, videos and testimonials Missy here. Separately described scrolling down to the bottom. You'll see. Oh, yes. Testimonials rent across and credibility. We have got a lot more on the bottom. Yeah. Yeah. This this is a really good thing. I like how you've given it a dominant section in the page. And and that the what I call this is what I would call a drop quote phones in this at this is a really smart way to do close because people aren't going to read lost people are not going to read a four paragraph testimonial or common, but they will read one sentence and great you got Larry Songkhla hair. This is liberty. Actually, I asked him for that. If I could use that enough in that spot and on my on. On my booth at my at the safari show. And he said yet SO I thought that was great. Nice nice. And then down here, folks. You'll notice these these are more. Credibility icons and reflecting major media zone productions Larry's Lanka's production company yelp. You know in your you Willie boat. I guess you're a sponsored. Yeah. Okay. And so these are all things that collectively add to that social proof folk that is so important. And again, if you're listening to this on the podcast, I really heard you to go over to a travel business success, and I will have the videos there too. So that you can follow along and see exactly what we're talking about. All of these elements are on the first page. They're very clear to see. And they really they really pop out. So I think you've done a really good job. Because I remember what your site used to look like and what I worked together. Oh, yeah. It was funny because I remember that I had some pixellated version of of a logo. And I remember changing that with I I change it to this round logo us quite a bit now. And when I changed it, and I just put excellent since nineteen ninety five on the top of the page and all of a sudden our bookings literally doubled and didn't do anything except that. And that was just what I did quickly after talking to you. You know, this is a long time ago. And I thought oh boy, you know. And then you feel like man, I have been really making of you know, a bad mistake for a long time. It's been hurting our business, you know. Pulsed? It's not your fault, your you're act, your expert fishing guide, you, you know, your backyard. Well, and if I was coming up to keanae when and I don't know anything about salmon fishing too keanae. I I would of course, want to hire an expert or get the local expert advice, really, no different. And this this comes from, you know, this this ecology of selling in tourist tours and tourism comes from many, many many years and looking at countless a websites and seeing really what works, but it's it's true. Folks. It can be that powerful. That's simple to start. When you start adding credibility elements to your website and all your marketing like you said in your web, the your trade show booth. It's on everything. Then that's a really good point. It's it's on everything. I wanted to look at a couple more cool things I think that on your site. When when when you first come to your your this website, the very you have this on auto play, which I think is a nice feature because you're very personable person. You come across really friendly and this really short video, folks. It's it's dead center on his website. It's just down about the second the middle middle of the of the top kind of. Yes. Right under the top. And I think you did a really nice job on your show. Yeah. We were trying to just make it to where they could hear from me personally. But also understand that there's two lodges. And for me to talk about the difference. It just made it real simple. And so people get the idea right away to who who who the it co it many. And you talk about the two the two lodges on your video. So they're they are there's pictures of right there. So that that is that is perfect. Let's take a couple more looks are gonna look at when those who will quick a so we've got we talked about the videos. We talked about the testimonials I think the other thing that I like on on your website here in in. This is this is a classic shots of of what I call happy guests on friendly in the sun in the sunlight, these classic grand grins shots with big fish. But and they are walkers. But the this clearly, and I know you're in two of them. And is this your wife? Nope. This is she's actually the the new reporter that does the fishing on channel two and Alaska, she does the fishing report and Sheikh fishes with us two or three times a season. And so everybody knows her locally her. She's a good smile and everybody knows who she is. So through on their nice, and that folks is another example of leveraging credibility of someone else like Larry Czanka or this woman. If you have media people in any way, shape or form that had been an any of your trips. Do what Jimmy did get their permission to to get a quote and get a coat of better yet even video and using liberally in all your marketing because nothing nothing is going to help build that social proof faster than that. So let's you know, as usual on this market. He's a big topic. We could probably talk about this the whole show. But I I do wanna talk about moved to the second part of this show, folks. And it's an and the, and if you have questions on marketing or social proof, I encourage you to go to trouble business success dot com down the bottom. There's a spot for comments, please finish your comments questions. You know, I'm we're here to help and love to to hear the that. And at the end the show, we're also gonna I'm gonna ask you Jimmy to share out people get a hold of us. So they can go, and so they can go to your site, by the way, it is. I mean, Jack fishing. That's j I m e Jack fishing dot com. I would encourage go check. To me cited as well done, and it's clean as professional, and it's mobile responsive, which is a important element that so the the site works well on a tablet or a smartphone. So let's let's look at what happens when you do marketing. Well, and you have these revolutions and Malaysians about your marketing and people start I'm going to stop sharing my screen. And so we can just be looking at each other here the. Your business can grow and you've been growing over the last. I certainly you've had probably since we met which let's say was ten years ago on average at what rate you think you've been going on average. You know, I think just maybe ten percent a year, you know, just been manageable. And I think there was a jumps there between two thousand nine and two thousand ten and that was probably when we talked because I did. Yeah. We did some major changes. I think that was the marketing changes we made. Plus, we wrote a business plan which helped which I had I didn't have you know. So I hadn't been any, you know, market research on my competition. I didn't know the pricing structure, I should be. So I really spend some time with another coach and did just basic business plan. And and so, you know, we kind of in two thousand ten I think we went well, I think we I think we doubled somewhere right in there. You know, without adding any infrastructure, you know, this this last year we doubled. Obviously, we we added a lodge, which doubled our our capacity. So we're going to double our sales. But you know, we also have to know how to double the sales, and we do know that how to do that. The. But so, yeah, we've kinda doubled in two thousand ten and now we're doubled again in two thousand seventeen that is huge with a with growth comes on wonderful things. And some challenge us leading. Let's let's let's talk about grab some of the growth strategies, specifically more about how do you deal with them real an, and I think they really important thing that all of us around the world that are growing have to deal with staff because we can't do it all yourself, and it's not even smart to do it all yourself and its impact. It's probably the single greatest. Challenge that I've seen over the years when I look at businesses that I've worked with that have grown a lot is the owner transitioning from owner operator working in the business as opposed to be working on the business and actually getting competent people in place, and it's it's not easy. I'll be honest with you as been a walk in the park for you. Jimmy. No, no, you always, you know, I can just. I just you just see like, I'm always working more and then trying to figure out how to control my time. So yes, it's been it's been it's always stretching him always grow. We're always growing in some always I'd have to change have to change something. You know, every something major seems like I have to make shifts every month in it. The hardest part is the shift in my in my mind, you know, how my thinking about this. You know, who am I going to be in the business? You know, what's my role? Now. That's what we're that's what my biggest challenges this year is my role. I knew as soon as I purchased the SeaScape building, and we were going to double our capacity. I knew that my role is going to change. I just didn't know where it was going to land me. And fortunately, I I think it's important that I I do read a lottery lot of business books, and you just get little nuggets. You know, you're reading somebody's Bhushan. And you know, I was reading a book, and it told me, hey, kind of this size of a business. Now, you're probably going to work on this part of the business and let. You know, leave the rest for some employees th right there. I knew like oh, man. I got I gotta work on systems. I need to get you know, we had a handbook, and it was little and it was really little and the one that gave the fishing guides as even smaller. And so we have just been focusing on getting the systems written down, you know. And and then employees, you know last year when I saw that I had twenty three. And and I thought, you know, you're, you know, I just remembered the revelation was I'm not really in charge of this thing. You know? I mean, I'm kind of like, you know, I don't, but I don't want it to, you know, wanna wag the dog by the tail either, you know. So I, but yeah, employee's if I wanna work on the business, that's what I decided longtime ago before and I talked to you. And it's just how to do that is is a trick. And now that's where we are really seeing how to do that. Because now. I've got key employees. Right. I've got leaders that you know, they are they know the culture that I want, and they they wanna be a part of that culture in. They've always been been with me for a while. And so they're able to transmit that culture that we have at Jimmy Jack fishing to the new employees because a new guy, you know, he comes on doesn't know anything. So we really need to baptism in the in the culture who because that's what the guests come for the come for the culture of Jimmy, Jack fishing, and so that's kind of the challenge and is not really way to to to articulate that. But that's what we're trying to do. So we're trying to get down on paper like in. What's our core values? What's are? You know, it's way more than a mission statement. Now, it's no this is how we behave. This is how we handle problems is how we handle conflict in all these things that you know. And I guess the thing is is I I've kinda taken like I liked leading people. But I. Oh, I love people. And so that's good. Because I I don't mind having employees might have more employees. I think it's just that. I wanna I just want. I want the team. I think to the team that are have now and the or the Kim that had last year and the new employees we have this year. I want them to really enjoy each other. That's you know, what I mean. It's like, and I think it's because I see in talk into the the more season employees. They're really concerned about who. I'm gonna bring on Mike my guides like who you can have guiding mixed me, you know. So I don't take it lightly that I'm going to put someone next to them as a colleague. And and it's it's it's yeah. It's always going to be a challenge though. I think it's a challenge in is not going to end. I think it's just part of it. And I, but I I'm not afraid of that. I'm not afraid of having employees. And I don't see him as a headache. You know, because really I, you know, in for me, you know, the life life is about my relationships with my friends, and my place need to be kind of my friends, you know, in a way they need to be somebody. I like hanging out with. Indeed. Well, I'm thrilled. And I'm not at all surprised that that you reading a lot. And I think what Demidov shared folks is golden at especially at any stage of business. But especially if you're as you're growing because there's so many a successful entrepreneurs who have walked the path before you, and it doesn't even have to all industry, and there there's really good stuff up that talk about wise ways of of scaling your businesses. And that allows you to start focusing on what you're really good at it. What you love and then find people find people who love at our at our wonderful at the things that maybe you're not so good at and. Yeah. And getting them engaged in in as you said that your culture, and the culture is key. And one of the thing that I think you shared on that I think is often overlooked in our industry, but it is the essence of what you just said is that I've always thought about customer services is related to. Heart thing so many of us in the hospitality industry air focused on external customer service, HUD, we treat our customers equally important if not more important is how we treat each other. And I call that internal customer service in a not at all surprised that and this is really a good sign when you have your staff and people going there, they're enrolled and engaged in helping make sure that you have the great team where the synergy that we're all on the same page as you are all working together. And you're having fun with each other doesn't get any better that then you know, that your culture and your team is evolving because they're they're equally nested to make sure that you have the team they want to work with that was probably reflection of that is also no doubt a reflection of who you want to work with. Yeah. Yeah. And it just makes every day better. When you get up in the morning, and he go, you know, what I'm so excited. I get up in the morning. I get up at any. Time because I'm excited about the day. I'm excited about Alaska love being here. And I'm excited about the business. But I'm excited to go out. I've got this camp kid become camp kid, but. His name's Nate. And he launches her boats, and he helps was a fish cleaning. He helps with the processing he he helps. He does the bow cleaning. And he is awesome. He's twenty one. And he's but he is always smiling. He's always joyful. I said, you know, you have kind of like an anointing of joy like you just you come out and the guides get happy, and he launches the boats. And so what? And so every day I get up. I'm just looking forward to see Nate, you know. And so I want to be looking forward to seeing me. And so that's the kind of thing. It's a we want to have this. You know, we want to have a great day every day, you know? And so I think that a lot of it too. Is that people what I've found. I'm an athlete I guess by trade 'cause I was pulled off there. You know till I was. I don't thirty last week. He well, I, you know, I just grew up in sports teams. And I and I grew up learning from great coaches in, and I was an athlete at Fresno state. And and you know at that low, and I had a great coach name's Bob Fraley. And he one of the things that I think is people you start to realize these guys have to create a team and they want to create a winning team. You know what I mean? I mean it and the thing is what I found is that employee's liked to be on winning teams doesn't anybody wanna be on the winning team? You know, you hate it. When you're in the losing team, and you'll stick it out for a while, you know, but if you're a real winner, you want wanna be traded or you want you gotta get out of there. And so I was I was always on these winning teams. And I I learned a lot from that. And I just that's how that's where I pull from you know, but I believe that you know, the players want to be on a winning team. And I it's my job as the coach to create a winning team. And if we all feel like we're win. Inning. Will why wouldn't you want to get it? But every day and win, you know. And so, and and I see it in other businesses, and you can really see it in the way, they brand there, you know, or or the way they way they have their dress code, you know, and so we've we've we've got address code. You know, we've got our hoodies and the guides wear the hoodies and you've got to have my hat on. And you know, it's just hey, we're a team, you know. And and but you wanna you wanna wear the winning jersey. Anyway, you know, you and if you're not on the yeah. Yeah. That's kind of way. I look at it. Yeah. I love that analogy of and really I think for a leadership standpoint to be the coach of a winning team. I really liked that a lot in. I, unfortunately, I see too many people entrepreneurs who have scaled were maybe maybe communiqu. They don't see themselves as the coach of a winning team. But the but put themselves too often the in the quote, unquote, boss frame of mind and. You it's important to have a parameters in roles in. But I think that that the being part of a winning team. I I really liked that. Because it does make all the difference in the world. It's I we're gonna fund business. We're we're in a quality of life business, but it's hard to enhance quality of life. When you're not having a good time yourself, right? Yeah. And I think that's that's one of the things that we bring as tourism business. We bring we bring excitement we bring adventure. We bring like say, we're we're making people smile and people, you know. Just like laugh and smile can make people it heals people. You know what? I mean. I think that people there's people that in their two point in their life. And why do we take vacations because we we need to -cation? You know, we need we need a break from from the grind, and we need to to to laugh and smile, and and a lot of times with your friends and relatives or. The people come up, and and you know, it's just great to Bill the be a part of that. And I think I started a long time for purpose because I was always looking for the real purpose? You know us, you know, it's a deeper purpose in my business. You know, because we how are we helping humanity? You know what I mean? But really I mean. You know, vacationing or or I guess a break arrest day arrests period at this part of being human. And that's what we we specialize in helping people rest correctly. You know, have a great time while the resting, you know, and so I I kind of found my purpose haven't really written it down. But it's kind of what keeps me going. Well, it's. I think it's it's really super important folks to return remember in and I would encourage you all to think about why do you do what you do? And I'm have that conversation with your staff because it will help me get to the core of what we're doing. Why we do it in in in helping to attract some people I'd like to laser in on a few key kind of mechanics of having to do with with staff and something that I see happen a lot especially with this season of tourism businesses. But I'm worse wherever you typically been finding your staff what have been some repair in. About that. You don't I I would say I've been not very good at that. So like, this is the first year we've had a focus to put a lot of time in hiring. But typically, I just throw an ad on Craigslist. And I would you know, if you emails, but but we've we've used Craigslist still just because it is a free space, and we use indeed dot com who we tried that one. I liked that that worked well to. We did find a couple employs on off there. And that just I would try another any of the other ones. I just tried. Indeed. And then the other thing we do is, you know, my staff kinda, you know, they indicate people with they meet good. But like I had one guy that I heard was you know, one of my other guys they'd run into him. Anthony, hey, you know, once you talk to this guy. So I put him in our process. But I do more of that. I think I'm gonna do, you know, some some some money prizes. Even like, you know, pay my staff if the person comes on staff because grey day, really neat. It's their team. They need to be the one to create their team. It's like if I'm on a, you know, if I'm on a soccer team or a football team in find a player, and you know, and I feel like he's a good fit for our team. I'm probably more right than my coach. I'm pro or I have just as much power as my coach and making that decision, although the coach will make that decision. But I shouldn't let this guy walk way. Right. And so that's kind of what we're going to do in the future is give some some money prizes. I guess to get to get good staff because these guys know our culture, they know the personal fit. I'm so glad that you brought that up. I was going to Justin. If you didn't. I it's I don't care what size business you're in. Folks. The getting your staff engaging in attracting the people that they wanna work with it just reinforces what would Jimmy keeps coming back to. And that's that culture this fun place to work so many enjoy being around with and the and that the that they have the shared values and ethics in engagement and commitment. To do. They have the passion for the thing that it is your workout whether you're fishing in the kid on your regarding people on the great wall. It's it's it's really the same. So let's let's couple of quick things on operations and staff is seasonal business. You guys weren't six seven days a week. I imagine straight via months on what are you guys doing to avoid burnout on on? So yeah, I what I what I've done is. I I am a real big rest. You know, I am all for resting. And so I believe we need to rest one day a week. And so what I've done because it doesn't always happen as I say your contract says your work days a week, but just for Meteo, I want you to know I believe in a rest day, and that just all that does is help us to take our guests. And usually we we have a lot of people want to go to church on Sunday will sometimes you gotta take care of that guess before he checks out. He didn't have a good trip, and you can do it. And then the guy the guy will do it. And I'm like, okay. So you're gonna work thirteen days in a row now. But I'm gonna give you two days at the end. And it's not in the contract. I don't ask to you. But I will make a way to do it. But so you get that respite. It's just not going to happen. And it just because the, you know, our mission is I that's our guests. Our mission is our guest there. First our team is second and the individuals third, and that's the way we operate. And so they know that and or my team my team that's been with me knows that and. It just makes it to where they know that I want them to get rest, they know notes important. So I I don't force them to rest. So, you know, you get some people that don't know how to rest in his they're not resting. I actually call him in. And I talked to him about rest right in the beginning. And I say, I'm not impressed. I did last year. I talked to someone said I am not impressed with you working twenty hours a day that that's only gonna make us fail is gonna make you fail. It's going to get you hurt. It's gonna make us fail. And so, you know, you don't do that as an athlete. You don't you know? I mean, it has an athlete we never I never even did an all night or studying. I just wouldn't do it. It wasn't my priority. And I I still had great grades. But it wasn't my priority. I would take a b and sleep because I had to train tomorrow. Am I team dependent on the and that's the way I look at it. It's like, hey, let's make sure we realized that in order to be an athlete tomorrow in order to train tomorrow. You know, if you're gonna go train through four hours tomorrow, straight and list and run and all this stuff. You gotta you gotta sleep so free twenty hours days in a row is just gonna make you, you know, you could get you sick. It could it could get you really sick. And then that's gonna help us at all. So so, yeah, I I am I guess in a way it's not black and white that you're going to get that rest. But it is in my values. No that. I am not at all surprised that that you're keeping tabs of your staff, and how are they managing themselves. Because it's true that when you get into the rhythm everything. And it's it was just go go go some people don't have that self awareness. And I do think that that's one of the most important jobs of a leader in general, especially if a bigger company is helping manage and support and build the success of your team. And if and if you help support them and be their advocate. You win our guest win and the and the team wins. And and. And this is the kind of thing when staff sees that. Wow. You really you really are committed to my well being and they wanna make sure that I have the best time in and do the and do the work and make the most money, but also at the end of the day. Don't burn out people. Really appreciate that. So I would imagine that's been helpful for retention what sort of. Return retention rate. Do you have on your on your your staff? You know, I think we would probably always around three-quarters. It seems like you know, when just hard in a seasonal business because people just life happens, and they find other things to do. But I think that they, you know, I mean, I've always said we have got the best rested guides on the keanae river, you know, and that's why we're smiling. And I I really, well, you know, you're we're in tourism. So it's like we're selling ice cream. You know, we got to somebody walks up to the counter. I mean, we gotta be smiling. I smiled. Yeah. And so being rested is a big part of that. But are yeah. We we keep I I would say we we probably even start keeping more because of the hiring process is a little more in tuned to our culture. But we are definitely keeping some good people. I've got one of my guides have had for twelve years one of my saltwater captains five now. And you know, it's just been in an Kevin him off sees five. And so, you know, we've got you know, dad's. We must be forever, but he can't leave. So he's. And yeah, you're right. I mean retention because we what what happens is in a very very careful, for example, not to. Even though we actually could use more river guides, for example this year, I'm not going to bring in more new guides than I have season guys because the culture isn't going to be stable. I gotta keep that culture. These guys get into the culture night can bring someone else on because who who's have say have like four they're staying any two more, maybe three more. But I can't take four more. I got four that are here in four. I can't that's going to mess with the culture. We'll do it. And I learned that the hard way I one year I heard like five guys on a fire in one I fired four, and then just it was the worst year we've ever had. And I realized that the problem was what I did, you know? So you can't you gotta keep your culture people. Yeah. And then the staff members just get upset at you that what did you highly city? It's. Jay. What you do? Yeah. Well, you know, and and there are, you know, in a team like I remember you don't plan at attract, Fresno state. You know, we had we have some high caliber athletes, and then we had some high caliber people on the team that did not go on the travel squad with us, but they were morale, and you wanted those people there and a lot of is because they were walk on because they had something that that you know, other team players didn't have nothing was handed to them. And but they were so much part of the culture in the work ethic. You know, and you got to you know, those guys are real important. So you gotta realize you may have people that don't perform as well. But like they are so good for the team morale. Very nice. Well, listen, I the the the fun about doing these especially with someone as seasoned as yourself as we could just talk all day. On just as any of these topics. But. How it people we need to wrap up here. I would like people to once again to be relented of how they can get a hold of you. And and if they wanted to go fishing how they go round. So the the easiest ways is just go to the website and Jimmy Jack fishing dot com and the web farms on every page it pops out on some pages, and you can just fill that out and Kevin he's an office. Most of the time. We also have lark now who's in the office. They'll call you back tomorrow, and you will get a call back in. And you can also just call us at our number which is nine zero seven two six two five six one. But we are in the office all the time, and we are very interested in hearing from people, and we call them back, and we we Email them back. We were there. You know, we're here. That's what we do. And that the responsiveness is certainly a key to. Strangers into friends and friends in customers. And if you folks I haven't been to Alaska several times, and if you've never it is a beautiful state and catching a giant fish is a once in a lifetime experience that is for sure buddy din fish, the is is just epic. It had Alaska's a it's just a it's the last frontier really is. And it's just it's beautiful everywhere. Everywhere you go. I mean, it's just gorgeous system where were worldwide show. We don't want up set our global audience. I'm going to say in the US, right? But yeah, pretty neat. Frontier. Our world I'll tell ya. That is here. I was thinking about lung goalie, and and they've got these giant salmon in the river there in this doc about way, I'll know where that is really out there. Yeah. Jimmy, sir. Thank you. As always a great pleasure. I look forward to coming revisiting again in three or four years and seeing what the how the team's doing? And how you guys have scaled up to to have. Have the most fun help the most people and make the most money. Yeah. Yeah. And see what the new issues. All right. All right. Thank you, sir. Take care Bank. You tim? Bye. Bye. Bye faye. Thanks for listening today. If you're looking for more tips, tools and resources to help with your travel tourism or hospitality business, please. Visit travel business success dot com. And there's all kinds of articles resources and expert advice to help you succeed. Hey, could you do me a favor? I would really appreciate it. If you would visit either I tunes Stitcher or Google play. Subscribe to my podcast and while you're there. I'd really appreciate it. If you could give me a five star review, the more global tourism professionals just like you who are aware of this show and get the advice that will help them succeed. The better we will all do, and it really helps me out too. I really appreciate it have a great day. Thanks for joining your host, Tim Warren on another travel business success podcast since one thousand nine hundred four him and his team have helped hundreds of startups to season pros with valuable seminars articles books and no nonsense advice for additional tips, tools and news, plus a free marketing. Mini course, visit adventure biz success dot com.

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