I'm a Queenslander through and through. Well, kind of. I am from an immigrant family who settled in Queensland, and even though I haven't lived there for 15 years, it is still a place I call home.

Marketing Eye began its journey about 13 years ago, and since then, we have built the business, as a team, into different States and Countries, which has been incredibly exciting. Who doesn't want to fly to New York for a business trip, or to Amsterdam? Even places like Atlanta and Los Angeles have their benefits. I certainly have a few perks up my sleeve from the many miles I travel, but it's not all glamour - and that is something most frequent travellers can attest to. In fact, there is little glamour other than what you see on Instagram and Facebook, and a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes. A reality few of us a willing to admit let alone share.
My disastrous trip to Brisbane

I haven't been travelling for 5 weeks, not even interstate, because my dog had an issue and I felt that at the end of the day, she is far more important than my next business trip. My priorities were in order. 5 weeks have past, and as the 'chief innovator in my office' I needed to head to Queensland to see our Marketing Eye Brisbane Licensee and attend a couple of very important meetings. 

New Art Director - woo hoo

With a new Art Director starting on Monday, I had to be in the Melbourne for the morning and then fly out to Brisbane. I don't like this hard and fast introduction cycle, without proper on-boarding because I believe it affects a new employee. Our new Art Director has more than 10 years experience and I am unsure whether he has worked for a company before with as much structure and systems as we do, which he is yet to be trained in.

Airlines need to train staff better

When I arrived at the airport, there was a problem with my booking. 1 hour and 42 minutes later, I walked through security. I was beat. Things like this really rattle you when you travel because it is frustrating. Airlines with enormous profits, should have their systems and processes in better shape and be a tad more customer service focused. Expecting a customer to stay loyal when you have endured an endless roll of stuff-ups from overseas call centres and on the ground staff, is ludicrous. 

Nevertheless, I bit my tongue. Frustrated, I headed to the plane. Another mishap happened while on the plane which wouldn't be a problem had I not had the issues beforehand, but once again, I bit my tongue. I'm getting really good at this!

Taxi's are losing it to Uber because of situations like this

I get off the plane and hop in a taxi. The taxi still has its last fare on the meter at $21 and kept the meter running, but I took a deep breathe and let it be. I didn't even bring it up. The fare as you can imagine was huge by the time I got to my destination 20 minutes later.

In the taxi I did my work calls and ran an idea past one of our managers. I could tell by the tone in her voice that she didn't think it was the best option. It is great that I am able to get that feedback just by knowing her tone of voice or how she responds - and only long relationships with your team can get you to this stage. I have to go back to the drawing board and think of a new solution.

Family is everything

I stayed at my cousins house, and had dinner at another cousins house. They are so beautiful. French champagne and a beautiful meal with family - is the best! But by 7.30pm I am beat.  I politely waited until 9pm before acknowledging to everyone else that I needed to sleep.

We went back to my other cousins house just up the street, and promptly hopped into bed. I know they don't get much time with me, and it would have been great to chat, but I had nothing left. 

Bed at last

I fell asleep really fast.

My dog who unfortunately licked Tiger Balm off my hands and became sick from it, decided to go to the restroom 4 times in the night. That means 4 times I had to let her out, wait for her, and then pick her up and put her back on the bed. 

I wake up at 5am and my cousin said she would be up at that time. I really wanted to sleep to 6 but she said that she likes to get up at 5am (which I do too), and I didn't want to waste the time I had with her.

We arrived at my other cousins house and had coffee, and I went to work with her and had another coffee. I never have two coffees in the morning, but it was a case of me needing to because I really wanted that time with Michelle. Family is really important and when you are super busy, they can sometimes be neglected.

Brisbane, you are my sunshine

I trotted off to the office in Brisbane and sat on the bench-style workspace area. The sun was beaming in and I appreciated where I was. My body was sore from a frozen shoulder and I am sure a few aches and pains from lifting suitcases, dogs and stuff. It was the sun that brought me back into the moment and gave me a sense of appreciation that here I was, able to appreciate Brisbane at its best. I was in heaven for a few seconds as I closed my eyes.

Marketing Eye Licensing paid for her wedding

Then I caught up with Melissa Sharp. She use to manage New South Wales for Marketing Eye and then wanted to own her own agency. She came to me and asked if she could buy a license for Brisbane, and of course, I said yes. She was perfect and in her first year, was the ultimate success story. All her leads were fortunately derived from the Marketing Eye website and she had 9 retainer clients, some of which were double retainers. A huge success story from a $25,000 investment. I'm immensely proud of her and everything she has achieved. She was able to pay for her own wedding because of the success of her business, which made her very happy.

We had two meetings which were awesome. I love Queenslanders and I just love doing business in Queensland. I feel like its home and its very personal.

After the meetings, I took a taxi to the airport. At least the taxi driver didn't rip me off. I arrived at the airport ready to head home. I should have booked an earlier flight in hindsight, but you never know how long meetings will take. 

Airlines, seriously, not today

Then my drama begins again. 53 minutes later even though I have a printed out booking with all the correct information, they couldn't find something on their system - and so I had to stand around. I'm tired. I give them some helpful advice, "There is nothing we can change about today, but what I would do if I were you is find out how you can ensure that this doesn't happen again. You have 3 staff standing around trying to figure out what to do, and you are on the phone to another person at a call centre. You also have a customer in front of you who isn't having a good experience."

The advice was not well received. The look on both girls faces were, "shut up and we will do as we please". I once again, bite my tongue. I gave a helpful suggestion on something they should look into, but they were hellbent on me being the "customer" and clearly I should be happy to fly their airline. 

Finally, I get on the plane and fall asleep. 

Melbourne, I need to be home in my bed

I arrive back in Melbourne, only to put an old receipt in the gate to exit the parking lot. $1890 came up. I'm like "no, really!!!" All good, it was an old ticket and finally I found the right one. I drive home through road works, detours and a few missed turns. What normally takes 20 minutes took 1 hour 20. 

I walk into my apartment, drop my bags, stand under a hot shower for 30 minutes, put my night wear on and hop into bed. Sound asleep, my dog decides to wake up 3 times for water and I had to pick her up to get back on the bed. Seriously... the day needed to end.
Mellissah Smith is a serial entrepreneur and business leader with more than 20 years' experience in marketing.
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Mellissah Smith

Mellissah Smith is a marketing expert, author, writer, public speaker and technology innovator. Having worked with more than 300 companies across technology, medical device, professional services, manufacturing, logistics, finance and health industries, Mellissah has a well-established reputation as an experienced marketing professional with more than 20 years experience. As the founder and managing director of Marketing Eye, she has taken the company from startup to a multi-million dollar enterprise with offices in Australia and the US. Mellissah is also the Editor in Chief of Marketing Eye Magazine, a quarterly magazine that cover marketing, entrepreneurship, travel, health and wellbeing. #mellissah #marketingeye

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