Ensemble Shares Biggest Profit Ever

with Nina Slawek

Ensemble's Cristie Newell & Lindsay Pearlman

Studying hard at Ensemble Extraordinary event in YTO!

Backroom with the Ensemble team

What does Lindsay Pearlman like most about being Co-President of the Ensemble Travel Group? Signing cheques. “It's the most gratifying part of our cooperative structure. All profits go back to the member owners. And for 2014, the cheques were the biggest they've ever been."

At the recent regional Ensemble Extraordinary training day in Toronto, I asked Lindsay and Business Development Director, Cristie Newell, how they account for the fattened cash registers.

According to Lindsay, “Members were very focused on selling preferreds this last year. A lot of our initiatives supported shifting dollars to sales which would yield the best earnings. And it paid off in a big way. The cheques were twice as high as the previous year. When owners see their efforts translate directly into their bank account, that's pretty motivating."

Cristie noted that last year's operational restructure which created a North American department focused solely on training meant that a lot more agents received coaching. And the BDM's could in turn focus on helping build sales.

“Our biggest problem is we don't tend to blow our horn enough. We are running a fantastic organization that is growing yearly. Last year we added 40 new members and our attrition is only at 3% - mainly due to retirement."

It's the 4th year Ensemble has hosted an Extraordinary event with training from partners who offer experiential travel opportunities and they've been sold out in most cities. The total attendance has been 450 agents. “These niche suppliers offer the opportunity for higher margin specialty product which also helps create loyalty. It helps the agent remain relevant to their customer," says Newell.

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