Randall Deer is a bit of an enigma: he runs a leading luxury travel company, yet his favourite holiday is camping. It’s easy to pick up from him that he loves being outdoors, whether it’s hiking in the Gold Coast Hinterland, mountain biking or spending the weekend at the beach with his family.
He is charismatic, easy to relate to and funny, yet there is a driving flame within him to keep moving forward, making headway and living up to the motto of My Holiday Centre, the parent brand offering these unbeatable holidays, is all about innovation. Five minutes with him easily stretches to forty-five, as he gets caught-up in the excitement of the next big opportunity and benchmark he’s set to achieve.
Randall is clear that his goal is to be an industry maker and to make a difference to the customers planning their holidays. He is passionate about avoiding “drip pricing”, or the practice of luring the public to call with an unreasonably low price they see in the paper, then selling everything from flights to transfers to day trips at additional costs. He believes in transparency with the packages offered, priding himself in the fact that the price advertised will be attainable 95% of the time. Holidays are delivered in a finished format which leaves nothing to chance, and because of the established relationships with airline, resort, and tour operator partners, travellers can be guaranteed the best value holidays even far into the future.
I can’t remember exactly how it goes, but it’s something like “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass, it’s about learning to dance in the rain.” [Quotation attributed to Vivian Greene.] I think that’s more of a way of living than just a quote.
I’d say one thing I’m not tolerant of is people blaming their circumstance for not having enough money or the biggest house or the right car. They can select the one point, that single moment in their life, when everything went wrong for them and then they simply give up. I don’t believe that’s true – we’ve all overcome obstacles and have had low moments. Just because you suffered something traumatic when you were growing up doesn’t mean that you shut down – you push harder. You persevere. Some people can do that; they throw themselves harder into their work, determined to be successful. They don’t blame circumstance, they create their own fate.
So in relation to the quote, you can’t sit through a storm and think “that’s it, it’s raining, I can’t do anything”, you get out there and make the best of what you have. It can be hard, but that makes the outcome even more satisfying, because you beat the odds and overcame hardship to achieve your dreams.
I love music, I think it’s extremely calming, but I’m not the kind of person who knows bands or song names. I’ll have the radio on and hear something I like and enjoy it, but I don’t take note of who sang it or what it was called. I was out the other morning with the boys and when I came back home Bridgie had the music on and it was such a nice way to start the day. I can forget sometimes how nice it is to have music on in the background.
Normally in the mornings we have the TV on – which one’s the one with Kochie? – Sunrise. It’s how I get my news; I don’t read the paper or have much time to catch up on everything, so I have it on in the morning. Mainly I watch it to listen out for anything that would affect the business, like exchange rates or international incidents, but I don’t pay much attention to the fluff pieces. So it was nice coming home and the TV wasn’t on and there was some music.
Randall concludes with this messages: “We are set out to prove to the Australian consumer that great service isn’t just about offering the lowest price. It’s about innovation and creativity, taking risks and being on the forefront of change. If it doesn’t make a difference, we are not doing it at My Holiday Centre.”