HOW DISRUPTING THE STATUS QUO CAN TURN YOUR BUSINESS INTO A BRAND LEADER
TRYING TO PLACE YOUR BUSINESS FOOT INTO THE LIMITED OUTLINE OF THE ‘TRAVEL FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES’ FOOTPRINT IS A CHALLENGING STEP. BUT OUR GUEST TODAY, JAMES BENNETT IS SUCCEEDING BY STRETCHING THAT FOOTPRINT TO FIT HIS OWN COMPANY BRAND, ALL ACCESS HOLIDAYS.
JAMES AND HIS BUSINESS PARTNER, OLIVER HAVE IN EFFECT DISRUPTED THE CORPORATE-WEIGHTED DISABILITY WELFARE STRUCTURES OF THE PAST TO DEVELOP A TRAVEL COMPANY PROVIDING TRAVEL CHOICE AND INDEPENDENCE FOR THOSE LESS ABLE.
This means breaking free from the standard fare of holiday packages currently offered to people who need help getting about or those with ‘B.O.C’ (behaviours of concern); James says this industry needs to become more market driven and client orientated.
“Just because people are disabled doesn’t mean to say they don’t want to do it! Why shouldn’t they watch the salmon run in Canada, go sailing … skiing?” James Bennett, CEO, www.allaccessholidays.com
In this podcast we hear how taking an altruistic approach to the disability sector can benefit so many links of the business model: owner, client, service provider. James calls it an unexamined market; one with far-reaching capital potential as well as a feel-good factor. He says that unless you are touched personally by disability, it’s an area of society that goes largely suppressed, unnoticed and buried below bureaucracy.
James highlights the red tape – “Australia loves dispensing little bits of (irrelevant) paper” - constricting his type of enterprise but says in a way this has given opportunity for him to free what used to be captive territory, one governed by regulations and a paternalistic body making decisions for their people.
Flipping a balance of power back to the consumer in such a tightly held market was ‘not for the fainthearted’! But James quotes Theodore Roosevelt when he says it’s just about being there, being persistent, relentless: “…the credit belongs to the man in the arena …” and always being nimble on your feet.
Valid points from James include tips relevant for all new business owners:
* Building trust with clients and providers will make your business their preferred option, but it takes endurance
* Realise that imitation of your business model is to be expected - be flattered - but also be prepared to deal with that extra competition
* Have a very prompt turn-around time on customer enquiries
* Use social media in tandem with face to face contact to build relationships
* See the weakness in other operations, the gap in the market and provide a much better alternative
* Say Yes! As Richard Branson famously said: "If somebody offers you an amazing opportunity but you are not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later!"
And for anyone debating about whether to start a new business, James says, “Just do it and don’t worry about the monsters in your head; they’re not the ones that will cause you problems” (it will be the ones you’ve never yet dreamed of!)
James sees the future for the disability sector as a happier story not just in travel but also in revealing a whole new untapped resource for many businesses; it makes sense to listen to this podcast. you can contact James on LinkedIn or on his website: https://www.allaccessholidays.com/
And by the way, if you need more help in moving your business from chaos to control visit me, Craig Oliver at: http://www.theprojectguys.co.nz/
Or read the show notes from our other amazingly informative, inspirational and gritty podcasts at: https://www.talkingbetterbusiness.com/
So many insights, tips and ideas to be had! Just look back, listen and learn, because learning how to capitalise on a gap in the market using your altruistic vision might be the best thing you can do for your business.
Go on, smash through the glass ceiling and grow your business into something remarkable