This week in our What's it like being a Travel Counsellor series we introduce you to Martina Hayden.
Martina lives in Co. Kilkenny with her husband Adrian and their 3 teenagers, Molly, Jack and Tony. After being made redundant in 2010, Martina decided that she wanted a fresh new start that would allow her to enjoy her working life whilst also being there for her family. Nine years on, she is still really enjoying her life as a Travel Counsellor:
“I have been working in travel for almost 30 years. I was interested in Travel Counsellors long before I joined 9 years ago. I didn’t seriously consider it as a possibility for myself until I was made redundant and I wanted a fresh new start for myself and my family. As soon as I went to meet Cathy Burke at the Head Office in Cork, I knew instantly it was the right path for me. Before that meeting I had wondered about how their business model worked and how they competed so well with the bigger names in the industry but I got all the answers to my questions at the meeting and I still remember leaving that day feeling so excited about my future. Our in-house booking system Phenix, our direct contracts as well as our destination management companies quite honestly blew me away. Since joining 9 years ago, there has been even more incredible changes and massive investment made in technology by the company and it continues to grow and grow.
I live in a very busy household with my husband Adrian and our three children - Molly, Jack and Tony. Between school -runs and hurling, camogie, soccer and rugby training, we are always on the go! I love being there for them whilst also being able to really enjoy my job. Having a good work/life balance is key for me. I work hard but I love the flexibility of working my hours around family life. Despite working from home, I never feel alone as a Travel Counsellor. I have made great friends who I can ring at any stage for advice or just a chat. The team in our Irish and global head offices are always at the end of the line too so I always feel so supported.
Most of my bookings are from referrals or repeat business which is always such a great boost to my confidence. Last year I joined Women in Business networking group which I really enjoy being a part of and it helps me to let more people know about my fantastic business…”