Interview with a Past GO Leader: Bailey!
The training and preparation for a tour season is long and arduous. Our GO Leaders are trained in-house to maintain our quality standards on the road. We strive to ensure our GO Leaders are equipped to handle anything and everything on a tour so you, the organizer, can focus on the students and enjoy the trip. One of our most talented GO Leaders is Bailey. She started as an intern during her final semester from Johnson & Wales University, and quickly became a fan favorite.
We had Bailey share some insight on the world of tour management through the form of an interview! How juicy!!
To start, what skills are crucial for your work as a GO Leader?
I think the biggest skill that you have to have as a GO Leader is top-notch communication skills. Keep the client in the loop of what’s going on. If things go south, they are more likely to trust you, and it makes your job easier if the client trusts you.
Which one of your personal strengths really shined through as a GO Leader?
I think my biggest personal strength was being able to relate to the kids, and actually talking to them shows the client you like your job!
What skills have you improved upon overall, through your work as a GO Leader?
Being in charge of 50+ kids in large cities makes me feel like I can do almost anything. The social skills and organizational skills you pick up on tour, and (the ability) to bring things together last minute can be applied anywhere.
What were some of the greatest challenges GO Leaders face when on the road?
The biggest challenge is being able to come up with a back-up plan in case an attraction closes last minute.
What do you wish someone would have emphasized to you about the job before you started?
I wish someone had told me that you always have to be three steps ahead when it comes to being on tour. For example, you should be focused on future attractions and meals!
What was the hardest part about the job for you?
The hardest part is when parents/teachers second-guess your actions or think you didn’t try your hardest as a GO Leader. As I said, there’s always a bigger reason behind the attraction closures or last-minute availability, and it is discouraging when they blame you for (some) issues when it’s out of your hands.
Let's lighten things up; What was your favorite place you visited?
My favorite tour was to Chattanooga/Knoxville!
What destination do you highly recommend organizers consider when planning a class trip?
“I would recommend any destination that would be different. A place that culturally challenges the students. Something they won’t get to normally experience, like an international destination, such as Norway!
What are some underrated attractions organizers should consider?
An underrated attraction that I have experienced was the candle-lit catacombs under the original St. Patrick’s Cathedral in NYC. You’d be surprised by the historical value of the place!
What advice would you give trip organizers when planning a class trip?
Some advice I’d give is to believe everything works out and to trust your GO Leader. Things constantly change (on the road), but there’s always a reason for it, and usually, it’s for the best.
What advice would you give parents considering having their students travel with GO?
Safety really is top priority, and the kids are always put first.
What was the most impactful lesson you learned from your time with GO?
The biggest lesson I learned is that no matter how hard you try, sometimes you can’t make everyone happy. You have to just accept that and move on. Remember, the tour must go on… (LOL!)
Can you recall one of your favorite tour memories?
Being in Chattanooga with a group from Kentucky, and just bonding with the kids. They were the most easy-going group, and the kids were the best behaved!
We love Bailey, and so did many of the group she led! She has been personally requested a few times by our repeat travelers! She definitely provides a more laid-back service to our groups, but the students love her. She connects really well with them, and always ensures any revisions made to a trip itinerary benefits the kids.
Who do you want to hear from next?
Where would you like to travel to in the future?
By: Sarah Hessasta, Educational Travel Specialist