Increase your chances of bagging an Agent Excellence Award by following our entry tipsTravel Weekly’s Agent Excellence Awards were created to recognise agents and agencies who go beyond the call of duty to excel at what they do.

If that’s you, start thinking about your entry now. Below are some tips on the qualities we are looking for in each category, and how to write your entry.

Creating a good entry

  1. Tell your manager you are entering these awards and ask them to help you with the entry.
  2. Think about what makes you or your agency stand out from the crowd and why. 
  3. Make sure your entry demonstrates the skills and attributes the judges are looking for.
  4. Give examples or statistics to back up your entry – for example details of sales targets and figures, or an example of a particular booking.
  5. Write out a draft of your entry before filling out the actual form. Make sure you answer every question and try to give thorough answers.

Judging

Within each category, the judges will be looking for entrants to demonstrate certain skills or attributes.

These awards will be judged by Travel Weekly’s in-house panel of experts including TW Group publishing director Simon Ferguson and veteran news reporter Juliet Dennis, who now heads up the Skills Zone section of the publication. Here’s what they are looking for in each category:

Best Manager – Large Agency (more than 25 shops)

  • Customer focused and sales driven individual
  • A good leader, managing and motivating staff to reach and exceed targets
  • Strong commercial awareness of what’s happening both in travel and retail

Best Sales Consultant – Large Agency (more than 25 shops)

  • Excellent listening and customer service skills and the ability to close a sale
  • Excellent product knowledge to match the right product to the customer
  • A team player

Best Manager – Small Agency (less than 25 shops)

  • Customer focused and sales driven individual
  • A good leader, managing and motivating staff to reach and exceed targets
  • The product and commercial awareness to build a successful shop in a competitive market place

Best Sales Consultant – Small Agency (less than 25 shops)

  • Excellent listening and customer service skills and ability to build a rapport with customers
  • Ability to close a sale 
  • Excellent product knowledge, including a good range of booking options / tour operators

Best Homeworking Agent

  • Self motivated and tenacious enough to grow client base and business 
  • Excellent customer service skills to maintain repeat custom and get new referrals 
  • Experience and product knowledge

Best Call Centre Sales Consultant

  • Excellent telephone manner and customer service skills
  • Ability to close a sale
  • Ability to multi task, often handing more than one enquiry at once

Best Business Travel Manager

  • Ability to create, motivate and develop teams
  • Ability to move with and embrace an ever changing industry 
  • Ability to multi task

Best Business Travel Consultant

  • Excellent customer service skills and rapport with clients, particularly when under pressure
  • Use of technology to choose the best product and build itineraries
  • Sales ability: offering hotel rooms and extras when someone rings up to book a flight.

Best Cruise Agency

  • Customer focused and sales driven staff who make the agency stand out in terms of industry and product knowledge
  • Focus on training
  • Innovation in marketing and promotions

Best Agency Innovation

  • A really good idea that makes the agency stand out from rivals (although it doesn’t necessarily have to be a technology innovation)
  • Show how the innovation improves business and / or customer service
  • Explain how the innovation has been implemented and is now being used