How do you run your vacation rental business?
- Some people are all about maximizing the profit
- Others do it for money PLUS separate but equally important reasons
While focusing solely on money may be a conventional purpose of small business, hosts who focus on other metrics seem to be happier and last longer in our newly emerging space.
15 weeks ago, we set out to explore the various ways vacation rental professionals define and achieve success.
We proposed that a “magic zone” or sweet spot could be a common denominator in that discussion.
But we didn’t know exactly how. Or why.
In each interview of Season 6, you can hear me pause the live conversation (sometimes twice) to call out a salient point that directly contributes to that individual’s version of success.
And over the course of 15 interviews, we can draw some connections between those nuggets of wisdom: patterns that act like a compass for the rest of us to use as we navigate our own business journey.
Here's the top-level conclusion:
The happiest, most fulfilled, and most sustainable vacation rental owners & managers across all locations and business size and maturity were not seeking unlimited growth.
That’s right: these businesses were not following conventional business advice to maximize returns at all costs. There was indeed an understanding of money. But in addition, they had each crafted for themselves a more layered definition of success. And most excitingly, these definitions were not impossible to achieve: in fact, these “sweet spots” or magic zones seemed surprisingly attainable no matter the size or location of the small business. Something feasible (should you choose it) for all!
My guess is that the choice away from growth-for-growth’s sake is probably because chasing growth enters the independent vacation rental owner or manager into a rat race with bigger/richer competition who can likely obliterate competition when executing the same model.
But when different terms are set (including money) it led our guests down a different, equally fulfilling path: and this happiness is what kept these people going: it was the fire to the passion keeping the industry alive.
But all of this raises the question: can ANY vacation rental host find and reach a magic zone or sweet spot in the industry? Can we learn to find success in our industry by signing up not for the ultra endurance marathon but rather the half-marathon?
Possibly. But it takes some work.
Using some of my favorite sound-bytes from the season, I’ve categorized some ways you too can configure your magic zone or sweet spot: veering off the beaten path and blazing your own trail.
Each of the 4 "configurations" are mentioned in the audio file up top.