Leon van de Bergh's FCTG Story
Life at Flight Centre is anything but boring! We spoke to one of our star Junior Travel Consultants, Leon van de Bergh, from our branch in George, to find out about his journey from application and training, to bringing in his more than his target! To becoming one of FCTG Top novices!
Leon’s dream was always to move to America. He clearly had the travel bug without even knowing it! But due to unforeseen circumstances, was forced to abort his plans at the last minute. His dream was shattered. He and his wife moved to George instead and started looking for work to pay the bills. Leon’s background was in sales, so it didn’t take long to start finding opportunities but after a few interviews he explained that “no matter how much money they offered, it didn't sit right”. Without knowing it, Leon was clearly looking for more than just an income to keep the lights on.
Then one day he came across an opportunity at Flight Centre. His gut told him to pursue it, so he drove all the way down to Cape Town to meet with another one of our rock stars, Michelle Bergset. Michelle helped him put the Flight Centre life into perspective, “she drew this incredible picture of a people who believed in something and showed me a road map of how I could be a part of that success story”.
At first, he thought this was all part of a standard sales pitch, something she repeats to every recruit, but goes on to explain that “there was integrity and passion in her eyes and I knew no matter what the salary was, I was going to work with this woman”.
Michelle had helped him see the bigger picture. Things weren’t all bad. There was light at the end of the tunnel and it just might have been the sign he was waiting for.
Then later that day, while at the movies he got a call “from one of the coolest recruiters I have ever encountered, Roxy Cant”. Roxy explained that he had the job and asked whether he wanted to give it some thought. “Before she could say anything else I said yes”. And that was that! Leon had joined the ranks at Flight Centre. The start of an epic journey.
Starting a new job is never easy, Leon struggled with the first few days of training. He wondered whether he had made the right decision, whether he had a future in this career but then once again he saw a sign. A representative from Etihad Airways showed the class a video of Abu Dhabi which he explains “rocked my world and I was sold from that moment onwards”.
Fast forward to his first month in store. Leon only managed to make 5k and it once again tested his faith in his decision. He felt useless. But the team rallied together and kept him on the path to growth. “What got me through that month was the encouragement of my peers and their relentless attitude to see me succeed”.
In his first one-on-one his team leader, Lee Ann sat him down and helped him set goals. One of his humble goals was to buy a scooter in cash. Not a lot to ask but Lee Ann helped him identify a path to achieving it.
It clearly worked because in month two he hit his target despite struggling with the admin side of the job. But with the help of the team they streamlined his processes and set him up to make him top novice in his third month! Leon explains “I decided that I'm going to stop stressing and start being in control of me and what I can change and to have as much fun as I possibly can”.
“Then month after month together with my incredible team, I have grown from strength to strength in this business.”
6 months later, debt free and fulfilled in his career, Leon walked into a bike shop and bought a scooter in cash! He also bought a slick Macbook Air in cash! His life had done a complete 180-degree turn.
“One of the most incredible things to top it all off, my wife and I are going to Abu Dhabi and Dubai in October! Our first real overseas trip together.”
Leon hasn’t looked back. He chalks his success off to his faith, his family, friends and colleagues, as well as the values and goals set while working at Flight Centre. That and never forgetting about your dreams. “Flight centre is a dream making machine not just for our clients but for us as well.”
“My story is everyone's Flight Centre story - a company became a family and a job became my passion.”