How do you know what you don’t know?

The answer to the question above, you don’t!

When you are faced with making a decision in your personal, or professional life, oftentimes you rely on your past experiences to help guide you. Now, what if you haven’t experienced anything close to the decision you are about to make? Well, you find yourself researching, networking, and asking around to see if someone can help guide you in the right direction.

And with that being said, the purpose of this blog is to help guide you in making the right decision. If you have been on the fence about joining our Travel MBA program or even changing careers, we want you to hear from Mallory Cline. She is three months into the Travel MBA program here at Gifted Travel Network and has shared what she has learned since she started, where she is now, and what the future holds for her and her business.

A headshot of Mallory Cline
Pictured above: Travel MBA Member, Mallory Cline.

Cline has always loved to travel and had the opportunity to study abroad in college. This experience was what “lit a fire” in her to want to share these memories and experiences with others. After leaving her corporate job last year, she decided to give herself a chance and commit to building her travel business full time.

I specifically chose the Travel MBA program because I felt like I had an instant connection during my interview. All of my questions were answered and their training program looked top-notch.

After being accepted into the Travel MBA program, all members are required to attend an in-person Jumpstart Orientation at the GTN headquarters in Mooresville, N.C.

When I first started and came to Jumpstart, I didn’t know what to expect. I was super green, and I still feel like that. There are times when I feel like, “what am I doing?,” but I know that I have the resources and that any answers I need are out there, I just have to look for them.

It was at Jumpstart Orientation, where fellow cohort members, Travel MBA mentors, and the GTN staff spoke about being open to what’s coming your way. This was something Cline didn’t expect to happen so quickly:

Two weeks after that, I was golfing with someone and told her about how I was starting my travel business, so she asked me to help her with an upcoming trip. Since then, she has turned into a new client, and, I’ve even had a couple of other new clients in this same way. It’s been very exciting but nerve-wracking since it’s all so new, but I know there's always help when I need it.

When Cline booked that first client, she called Travel MBA Mentor, Amy Kaufman Relihan.

I got on the phone with Amy, and she walked me through everything. She reassured me throughout the booking process and helped me stay calm. I knew that by making that call, Amy would help me stay calm and guide me through this process.

What’s so funny about this is, at first, I thought the hard part was going to be getting the client, but now I’m realizing, it's truly that I don’t know what I don’t know.

At the beginning, she found that what she needed help with most was building the foundation of her business.

One of the biggest things for me when I was looking to leave my job and start something new, is that I wanted to do something on my own. And that was one of the big things that stood out to me about GTN. After interviewing and meeting with the team, I knew that not only will they help me build my business from the ground up, but there’s longevity there.

Even though I’m just starting, I see potential in myself and know that they see potential in me, too, and can help me not only start my business but take it to the next level once I’m ready.

Now that Cline is three months into the program, she has reviewed the modules, built her foundation, reviewed her business goals, and set new goals to accomplish. The next step for her is to take action!

One of the big things for me was thinking about my brand and how I would position myself to everyone who knows me as “Mallory in the corporate world” and how to explain what I’m doing and showcase myself. Now that I’ve been doing it, I feel like my goals have shifted and become more specific. I know that establishing my brand takes time, and while it’s great to get a logo, building brand awareness doesn’t just come overnight. With that being said, I have started to look into my numbers and establish a sales goal.

As Cline reflects on the first few months of her entrepreneurial journey, she knows choosing GTN was the right decision.

The best part about this is that everyone in the program is so awesome, and the cohort is so supportive… and that’s what I love about it. It’s a true community of people that are all at the same stage as me and trying to learn as much as we can as we go.

As Cline continues on her travel entrepreneurship journey in the Travel MBA program, we will be following along and keeping you updated along the way. If you are interested in learning more about the Travel MBA program, apply now to schedule your interview today!

Stay tuned!