Courier February Courier - Page 16

BUSINESS INDUSTRY INSIGHTS FROM NTA MEMBERS The net worth of networks BY BOB ROUSE During his recent term as NTA chair, Jay Smith often said, “The Owners Network is NTA’s best-kept secret.” Eighteen of the 20-member group met during Travel Exchange in San Antonio, but the secret is definitely out. Also convening during the convention were 55 members who attended the inaugural meeting of the Tour Supplier Network and 70 members who gathered for the second session of the DMO Network. analysis gives us financial benchmarks we can each compare our company to. Courier: And you meet in person, right? Hoffmann: Yes. We usually meet twice a year, and it’s always on a Friday so we can steal a portion of the weekend and not miss as much time in the office. Everybody invests real currency and time to travel to meetings, but the payoff is unbelievable. I’ve been an NTA member for 28 years, and this is by far the single- best benefit that’s come along. Morgan Maravich, NTA’s manager of industry and member engagement. Sally Berry, CTP, Corning Museum of Glass “After the Tour Supplier Network session, even the most experienced Tour Supplier Network “The involvement and the high level of conversations were fantastic,” said members said they were taking away new pieces of information. And when the DMO Network session ended, the group broke out in spontaneous applause. They were just so grateful this initiative is getting off the ground.” Courier talked with three NTA members who hold a leadership role with their respective networks. Mark Hoffmann, CTP, Sports Leisure Vacations Owners Network Courier: The Owners Network was formed a decade ago to give tour operator CEOs a way to share information and discuss busi- ness ideas. What makes it work so well? Hoffmann: Our meetings are an oppor- tunity to sit down with people who do business in the same industry and discuss things you wouldn’t normal