Travel Agents

MTA BDM talks success, failure & mentoring

Powerhouse women are everywhere you look in the travel industry, and today we’re lucky enough to snag an exclusive chat with Business Development Manager for MTA – Mobile Travel Agents, Sally Gorringe.

Sally has climbed the travel ladder, after starting as a travel agent straight outta high school, and is waiting for Chris Hemsworth to return her call…

How did you get into the industry?

I did work experience while at school, at HWT Crows Nest in Sydney and loved how the travel agents interacted with clients and had all these shiny travel brochures I could stamp! It didn’t take me long to know that that was my calling.

I was lucky enough to get a job in an agency a week after completing my HSC and those consultants I worked with showed me how valuable being mentored was to start my career.

What’s your biggest life lesson so far?

I’m one that does like to do things differently including having sung my sales presentations, dressed up in character to communicate a product point and even made a cake in a job interview once to prove I had “all the right ingredients” to do the role and yes, I got the job!

My life lesson is that people follow those that inspire and motivate them so … I want to keep doing that, even if you can be unconventional at times.

What are your career ambitions?

Depends if my boss reading this … If not, to have his job of course.

Yes, I am more ambitious now than ever, especially as I meet other women in national management positions and they inspire me to focus on that for my career progression.

I’d like to ensure I’m in a role where I can continue to make time to guide and mentor women as its really satisfying to see others achieve their goals too. I know I have a lot to offer and the future is exciting.

Who is a female in travel you look up to?

I don’t want to highlight just one as there are many. However, the ones I admire most have worked hard for where they are, still have their sense of humour, are not afraid to get their hands dirty and are leaders by setting examples in their roles.

I am inspired by confident women who own their positions, challenge the status quo and are proud of their achievements.

What’s the biggest challenge for women in travel?

Luckily, I find being a women has helped me in my career more recently than hindering me.

Being a woman has made it easy for me to be empathetic in my current role, relate to others at different life stages, recognise changing  motivations and be open to share my failures and successes to help steer others on their paths as a mentor.

I have gone through the 90’s in travel when yes, there were a number of challenges as a women but now I see these are a lot less as more women take the lead in our industry.

These challenges were important in my career as I draw on those experiences when mentoring others to give some foundation to help guide women on their journeys.

Where do you hope to be in five years?

Depends if Chris Hemsworth returns my calls.

If not, then I do see myself leading an organisation to grow their Australian market and continuing to encourage / mentor others to have confidence in themselves and not try to be everything to everyone, but focus on what they are good at.

What advice would you give to your younger self starting her career? 

I would tell myself that if I was motivated by money and status, then don’t work in travel.

If I loved the idea of working with inspiring people, not taking myself too seriously, getting to visit awesome places and cultures whilst also being able to bring people joy, then go for it!


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