LivePlan Customer Interview: Turning Passion for Travel into a Profitable Business
N’Teasha Williams is one of those amazing entrepreneurs who somehow manages to fit the lives of two or three people into one. She works full-time at the Pentagon in Washington D.C., she runs her start-up travel concierge business nearly full-time, she’s taking classes, and she somehow finds time to travel the world! Read her interview below to see how she is able to stay focused – and more importably, how she’s been able to turn her passion for world travel into a profitable business.
Why did you start “Be Relaxed Destinations, LLC?”
I am completely obsessed with travel! All of my life I have dreamed of traveling the world, which is one of the reasons why I joined the US Navy. When I got out of the military I knew there was nothing else that I loved more then travel. I feel restless if I don’t take a trip at least once a month. This is why I started Be Relaxed Destinations. Confucius said “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life…” Well that is exactly how I feel about my business. It is pure pleasure for me.
How much time do you spend on Be Relaxed Destinations, LLC?
I am a full-time government employee for the US Marine Corps while working full-time to grow my business. I give my business almost equal time – about 30 hours a week, and more if I’m working with multiple travel groups. My goal is to be completely self employed by the end of next year. Again, that’s why I wrote my business plan. It was very important to have a well-written plan. It’s helping me transition to self-employment. At first I was willy-nilly about getting myself organized, but LivePlan really helped me focus.
There are a lot of travel services out there. What makes yours unique in the market?
I have a concierge level of service and I like to create a friendship with my clients. I don’t want to work with clients that I haven’t formed a connection with. I believe that next to purchasing your first home, a vacation is a very important purchase. A vacation should provide you with great experiences and a lifetime of memories. Many people save for a long time to have their dream vacation, so I make it my mission to ensure that each of my clients have the vacation of a lifetime — every time! I take care of everything; from the moment you leave your house to the moment you arrive back home again. My clients only need to show up and have a great time!
How many people do you currently employ?
Right now it’s just me. I have a virtual assistant help me when I am working with multiple travel groups. I plan to hire an additional person in the next 12 months when I launch an exclusive membership program that provides members with one of a kind experiences and the opportunity to experience amazing destinations.
What advice do you have for other entrepreneurs starting a business?
Don’t let other peoples’ advice dictate how you pursue your business. It is important to have a mentor, but their vision may not be yours; therefore don’t let their ideas cloud yours. As I mentioned, I work full-time while working to grow my company. If I listened every time someone told me “I was doing too much,” I wouldn’t be where I am today. You also need to be flexible. If the plan is not working, you need to know how to adjust and change it to fit the needs of the market.
We’re always strong advocates for mentorship! You mentioned the need to have a flexible plan. Has writing a business plan helped you in your business venture?
Absolutely. Writing a business plan focused me. I was able to put exactly what I wanted down: my goals and my milestones. It also helped me realize how many clients I need to achieve my revenue goals. Honestly, I hate writing, but the examples that LivePlan provided helped inspire me to complete this very important goal of having a document that I could grow from.
What has been your biggest barrier to date?
I’m an introvert and I don’t really like networking. I understand it is a necessary thing; therefore, I made it a goal to attend at least 3 events a week. I currently get the majority of my clients via referrals as well as attending Meetup events. With the schedule I have, time is also a huge barrier, so staying motivated is important.
What about your biggest success to date?
Definitely getting my business off the ground! I now have 50 dedicated clients, I’m a registered LLC, and I’m profitable! I have been able to achieve each goal I set out to achieve with completing my business plan being the most important. Things are clicking now.
What’s your earliest memory of entrepreneurship?
When I was in high school I was a member of the Future Farmers of America. I was even a local and state officer. Each active member is required to come up with a Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE) project. I had many, but the one that sparked my entrepreneurial interests was being a beekeeper. I had to find a mentor, learn about cultivating the bees and then sell the honey. I would sell the honey door-to-door and at farmers’ markets. Many of our chapter future projects depended on the money from the honey sales. This taught me responsibility as well as camaraderie which carried me into my time in the military and currently in my life.
What best describes your target customer, and where can they go to learn more?
My target customers are couples who are interested in creating a unique experience by having a destination wedding, honeymoon, and or babymoon (when pregnant parents to-be want to take a last celebration trip before their newborn arrives. It’s usually a relaxing romantic spa trip!). Young families with children interested in exploring the world as a family, where the children can actually see the places they are learning about in school instead of just reading about them.
Another market are empty nesters, who are ready to see the world together now that their children are no longer at home.
Solo travelers, which is the way I personally prefer to travel and therefore are near and dear to my heart, are also a market I serve. Solo travelers are those who enjoying having their vacation done their way. Those who want to see the world and are either tired of waiting for friends and/or family to have the money to join them, or they just prefer to be on their own. I also plan family reunions, churches retreats, and many other group travel options.
Those interested in learning more about Be Relaxed Destinations can contact N’Teasha at (866) 907-6694, find her on Facebook and visit her travel site: