Wholesalers

“If we hadn’t lost focus, we could’ve been much bigger”: Excite co-founder

Hannah Edensor

Speaking at Travel DAZE today, Excite Holidays co-founder and Executive Director, Nic Stavropoulos, said his company could’ve been even bigger today if he didn’t suffer “shiny object syndrome”.

Sharing his tales of failure and lost focus, Stavropoulos admitted the shiny object syndrome is his biggest flaw, and it’s something that has the ability to hinder any business’s success.

“When your energy and focus goes into multiple channels, you’ve suddenly lost that one focus.

“You’re not the master of one, you’re not nailing it or being pro at the one thing.”

Stavropoulos told the audience that early on, they were presented with the opportunity to purchase a corporate travel company.

He said himself and his business partner were experts in Excite Holidays, but vertically integrating a new business was really hard.

“Our focus was diverted a little,” Stavropoulos admitted.

“The problem we found was with our own travel wholesale business, we started from scratch and knew everything.

“With the corporate travel vertical, it was a totally different beast. We gave it less focus, and by giving it less focus it inevitably died a very slow death.”

But Stavropoulos said they didn’t feel like they’d lost much, but one key question was, “What was he cost of Excite Holidays without our focus?”

“If we hadn’t lost focus, we could’ve been much bigger today.

“Over the course of our focus, we’ve had many shiny objects, and I’ve been involved in many initiatives, some not even related to travel

“But wasn’t until few years ago where we cleaned up all the other distractions, got out of other initiatives, that we saw Excite Holidays absolutely explode.”

Stavropoulos explained that in two and a half years, they went from 70 staff to over 200, with offices around the world.

“None of this would’ve been possible without our single-minded focus on one business.

“We’ve created an unbelievable executive team, and we meet with them once a week where we exchange opinions and share ideas .

“Failures are valuable lessons,” Stavropoulos concluded.

“If you find you lose your focus, remind yourself why you started. If it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.

“There is power in the present when there’s hope in the future.

“And if you stray from the path and it doesn’t feel right, always come back to your ‘why’.”


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