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Delta Vacations - Sales Manager of the Year


Gold Stevie Award Winner 2019, Click to Enter The 2020 Stevie® Awards for Sales & Customer Service

Company: Delta Vacations, Minot, ND
Company Description: Delta Vacations is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Delta Air Lines and one of the largest providers of vacation packages in the United States. Delta Vacations has been in the vacation business for more than 45 years and offers travelers convenient, one-stop shopping for custom-designed vacation packages to more than 300 of the world’s top leisure destinations.
Nomination Category: Sales Awards Individual Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Sales Manager of the Year

Nomination Title: Patti Luyten: Driving sales by leading from the heart

Tell the story about what this nominee achieved since the beginning of July 2017 (up to 650 words). Focus on specific accomplishments, and relate these accomplishments to past performance or industry norms. Be sure to mention obstacles overcome, innovations or discoveries made, and outcomes: REDACTED FOR PUBLICATION

Responsible for leading 57% of the workforce at the Delta Vacations Customer Engagement Center (CEC), Patti Luyten, Manager, Reservations Sales & Service, and her team are dedicated to providing outstanding sales and customer service support.

Patti has been with Delta Vacations for 19 years, managing the Reservations team since 2015. At her core, Patti cares about people and leads with honesty and respect, exhibiting these values every day.

Service from the Heart

Patti’s first priority is people. She leads with heart and as a result, her team follows with passion for taking care of customers.

Patti is committed to creating an environment where people feel valued and successful. She makes it a point to know something personal about each and every one of her 200 employees, often going out of her way to help an employee in need. For example, when Patti learned that an employee’s child didn’t have a coat as winter was bearing down, she went out to buy one and discreetly left it at the employee’s desk.

Patti is hardworking, dedicated, and committed to the success of her teams. She comes in early and stays late, knowing this isn’t an 8:00-5:00 job. She wants employees to know they are in this together when it comes to supporting the business.

A great example of this occurred in late 2017, when back-to-back hurricanes resulted in a record number of calls from customers whose travel was impacted by the storms. During this time, Patti worked 11 long days in a row to help employees as they assisted customers, setting aside her personal life to be there with her team throughout the duration. In doing so, she embodied true servant leadership.

Customer Experience is Paramount

At the CEC, each day brings a new set of challenges, requiring constant adjustment to find the balance between providing excellent customer service and meeting revenue goals. Patti’s agility in change management has ensured her team achieves department goals while still meeting the demands of the business.

Patti has raised the bar in sales and customer service performance, with her team serving as an integral part in all of the following:

  • Individual NPS scores increased.
  • Breaking all of the company’s top 10 revenue days in 2018.

Growing her People

Leading a large workgroup requires someone who respects individual differences, is open-minded, and approachable. Patti provides frequent, honest feedback and continually looks for ways to help her employees learn and grow.

As a leader, Patti has fostered a sales-driven culture where motivated individuals thrive and find success.

  • Sales team average tenure is more than 9 years; with combined selling experience of 685 years.

Patti excels at identifying strengths in her employees, mentoring them to encourage career development, resulting in numerous promotions from among her direct reports.

This isn’t just a job for Patti, it is her passion. Patti’s hard work, dedication and leadership are an inspiration to those who work with her and are the attributes that set her apart. It is our honor to nominate Patti Luyten for the distinction of Sales Manager of the Year.