Breakfast Anyone?

Kenneth Shapiro In this issue’s cover story, “Ensemble Performs” (page 18), we profile Ensemble Travel Group. This agent consortium has been growing in the West, with a unique profit-sharing structure and a number of new programs in the works. As you will see in the article, one of Ensemble’s goals is to

By: Kenneth Shapiro

In this issue’s cover story, “Ensemble Performs” (page 18), we profile Ensemble Travel Group. This agent consortium has been growing in the West, with a unique profit-sharing structure and a number of new programs in the works. As you will see in the article, one of Ensemble’s goals is to connect with agents and provide them with the tools they need to be successful.

“Brand awareness in the travel industry is slim to none. Personal relationships are very important paired with an organization to back the agent up,” Jack Mannix, president and CEO of Ensemble, says in the story.

Like Ensemble, at TravelAge West, we value our relationship with agents, and we are always on the lookout for new ways to develop personal relationships with our readers. Our writers and editors enjoy meeting with agents and discussing the issues that are important to them. With this in mind, we’re about to embark on a brand-new endeavor that we hope will help us not only get to know our agent readers better, but to better serve their needs as well. It is a one-of-a-kind program we are calling “Breakfast With TravelAge West.”

Under this new initiative, our editorial staff is planning on visiting a number of travel agencies throughout the West, in order to discuss agents’ likes, dislikes, challenges and concerns regarding the state of our industry. We hope to open up a dialog, share some insights and get to know each other a little better in an informal setting. And because we would never come for a visit empty-handed, we also plan on bringing in breakfast for everyone in the office.

Our goal with this new program is not only to learn more about the travel business and agent concerns, but to ultimately help us get fresh story ideas and generally create an even better magazine for our readers.

We intend to begin this new program right away, making a visit to a different agency every other month or so. If you or your office is interested in having Breakfast With TravelAge West, please send me an e-mail (letters@travelagewest.com; subject line: Breakfast). We can’t guarantee that we’ll be able to visit every agency that invites us, but we will do our best. K.S.

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