Leadership Lessons from Palma, Majorca

Tour Guide or Travel Agent, Part III

Palma, Majorca was our next port. When we arrived the weather was somewhat overcast, however, since the temperature forecast was 86 degrees F we welcomed the relief from the heat wave!

Sollier Train 083015

After a quick lunch in the main dining room, we met our tour group at the staging area and proceeded to disembark to our tour bus.

This is my third post on leadership lessons learned from tour guides during our summer vacation cruise of the Western Mediterranean.

As we left the dock headed to our train ride, we passed the marina, where many super luxury yachts were docked. Our tour guide gave us a brief history of the island, which was originally a Roman camp. Palma is the capital and largest city of the Balearic Islands in Spain. While the island has a rich history, my draw to visit Palma was Majorca pearls’.

On our way to the train ride, we stopped to take pictures of the La Seu, Palma Cathedral, built during the Middle Ages, and the Royal Palace of La Almudaina. Our guide quickly led us to the best photo spot, and we were back on the bus, resuming our trek to the train. We arrived in the quaint town of Soller, which is located in the mountains and known for their oranges, and our guide led us downhill to the city center.

Soller is your typical small European town. The city square or plaza is the heart of the town and the cathedral the focus of the plaza. The cathedral is dedicated to St Barthelme and most of the men are named after him. The town is filled with narrowed streets, beautifully carved doors, family restaurants, and small shops. While strolling through the town, we enjoyed the most delightful orange gelato!

To return to Palma, we boarded an antique train. Built in 1912, the train provided us with a relaxing and scenic tour of the mountain side and the famous “dry stone wall” trail. Once we reached Palma, we boarded our bus for a short ride to the port and back to our ship.

Overall, it was a pleasant afternoon. While our tour guide was efficient, he was not very engaging. Even though he introduced himself, I do not recall his name. He made sure we went from one point to the next; however he spent very little time with us. Unlike our previous tour guides, his priority and focus was on the logistics of tour instead of our experience. His actions reminded me of a travel agent.

Success is not a destination, it is a direction”
– Tim Sanders

To achieve success, leaders must align their daily choices to the goals of the organization. Every day we choose how we spend our time and what we will focus on. The question is “are we focused on the things that will give us the biggest return?”

In his book Today Matters, Maxwell explained how the Pareto Principle helped him realign his priorities. The Pareto Principle states, “focusing your attention on the top 20 percent of all your priorities, you would get an 80 percent return on your effort” (Maxwell, 2004).

Our tour guide chose to spend his time focused on the mechanics of the tour. As a result, we enjoyed our excursion, however there was very little our tour guide did to make the experience memorable.

Leaders must choose their priorities wisely. Author Robert McKain said, “The reason most goals are not achieved is that we spend our time doing second things first.” Our tour guide’s priorities were focused on the second things.

As a leader, what are your priorities?

Your friend,

Dr. Kim Moore

Kim d. moore

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