Opinion: Why mum still knows best

Opinion: Why mum still knows best

Hot on the heels of Mother's Day, dnata UK's Andy Freeth explains why we should all listen to our mums

After watching my kids reach the ripe old ages of six and three, I can confidently say that 99% of parenting advice out there is nonsense.

No one tells you that staying up to watch Match of the Day will be considered a ‘late night’, packing the car for a family day out requires Tetris computer game skills or that Peppa Pig and Thomas The Tank Engine on Channel 5 at 6am is an early-morning Mecca for any parent with young kids.

Similarly, they don’t tell you that you and your significant other are responsible for these little people, you are going to want to guard them with your life and you will have an unexplainable urge to pass on pearls of wisdom.

Hot on the heels of Mother’s Day, when you should have lavished love 
and attention on all the mums out 
there – and shame on you if you didn’t treat the special ladies in your life – I 
did a quick office poll to ask for the 
best piece of advice your mum ever gave you.

After removing a few of the more ‘colourful’ entries, it became really clear that the office loves a cheesy cliché and that mums actually do know best.

In an age where we’re constantly bombarded with rules and advice, it can often be the little things that our mums have said that prove to be the most memorable and useful in our day-to-day lives. How many times have you rolled out a cheesy line to your team and realise you’ve heard that before?

With that in mind, and remembering that clichés are clichés for a reason, 
here goes…

Cliché 1: ‘I want never gets’

Nothing stays still in the travel industry for long and agents have long recognised loyalty is best driven through added value and service.

I’m constantly hearing from our sales team of the hard work agents are putting in, often going above and beyond to secure those all-important sales.

Competition in the travel industry is fierce and it’s more important than ever to knuckle down and differentiate yourself.

Cliché 2: ‘Mum knows best’

Older people are wise. They’ve been there, done that and lived to tell the tale. Having lived longer than you, they have experience, and experience is often the best teacher. They know first-hand what it’s like to live through tragedies and triumphs.

Learn from their mistakes and follow their example. I’ve been lucky enough to have some fantastic mentors throughout my career and genuinely wouldn’t be in the positon I am in now if I hadn’t taken their guidance and advice.

Cliché 3: ‘If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all’

Manners don’t cost anything and 
who doesn’t want to work with 
polite people?

Cliché 4: ‘Back in my day…’

The way we interacted with technology just 10 to 20 years ago is completely different to today. Planning a holiday 
still fills many holidaymakers with anxiety or doubt, and the increasing amount of content and choice online 
can be confusing.

This provides travel agents with a huge opportunity to become expert advisers to their customers and demonstrate their expertise.

My own lovely mum finds it hilarious that I’ve started to repeat the same phrases to my own kids. If only I could get away with “Go ask your dad”.


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