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What are Tour Guiding Techniques | Plant Tours

As we head towards the end of summer and the start of fall we are starting to see bookings for large group tours pick up. For business events of all kinds this is a common trend after Labor Day since summer vacations are over and kids are back in school. Attendance for any large group tour or trade show will be near its full potential. Here are a few basic tips for tour guiding as we get back out into large group events.

What are tour guiding techniques?

Manufacturing tours occur when people leave their regular place of work and visit a plant for a short time, ranging from a few hours to a few days. The reasons for the tours can vary depending on the objective. Learning tours for company leaders and investors, assessment tours for customers and teaching tours for employees and student groups are just a few examples of tour objectives. The intention for these tours is learning something new about the plant’s processes, capabilities, and overall strategy that the tour group members can understand and apply to their own job duties.

What are the different stages in the tour guiding techniques process?

There are several different stages in the tour guide techniques development process.

Stage 1: Research other manufacturing tours in your area and in your industry: If at all possible attend various industry, supplier, customer and competitor tours to develop best practices. By taking tours within your market you will learn what resonates with tour group members and what doesn’t. It will also let you know where you stand compared to similar types of tour events in the manufacturing industry.

Stage 2: Give your tour a name: This is an easy way to market your tour and create a memorable experience for your tour group. Harley Davidson offers a “Steel Toe Tour” which takes guided tours behind the scenes to see how classic cycles are manufactured. A name is easily remembered and promotes word of mouth buzz which helps promote tour packages. It will also allow the tour to be easily identifiable through keywords on search engines and social media such as LinkedIn for additional promotion.

Stage 3: Determine the duration, frequency and departure details of your tour: The objective and content of the tour is very important but additional details can make or break even the best tour. The first impression of the tour group is vitally important. The welcome area should be designed as if you were inviting guests over to your home. Warmly acknowledging and greeting guests will go a long way to building good will. Having an organized and clean receiving area with organized ID tags, lanyards, tour guide headsets, refreshments and even a first aid kit is necessary. Planning a reasonable duration a guide must adhere to when giving a tour should be one of the guiding principles in the planning process. Other questions that need to be answered include how often should the actual tour be given? WIll we give group participants a gift which is common in the tourism industry or will we just have a recap and networking time with the tour operator at the conclusion of the event.

Stage 4: List the major locations and tour highlights: Plan out the stops on the tour itinerary where public speaking will take place. Interesting functionalities, machinery, and a plant decision maker should be considered during the methodology of tour planning for your factory. Also identify potential environmental issues and safety concerns so that they can be addressed with appropriate walking areas and personal protective equipment (PPE) In addition to safety announcements to the tour group before and during the tour.

Stage 5: Research tour content and draft commentary: When developing the script and delivery of the content for the tour it is important to provide the group facts and true statements without boasting or an overt sales pitch. This will be a more effective way to present your information. When selecting a tour guide to deliver the presentation it is imperative to find someone with good communication skills that makes eye contact with the group and can interject their sense of humor to make the tour more interesting.

Stage 6: List any 3rd party activities, attractions, entrance fees and inclusions: Since many attendees will be coming from out of town it would be a good idea to offer a tourist guide for the area. A planned tourism product or something the guest can do during their free time is a nice touch. Offer a guidebook to sightseeing in the area or provide city tours of your own to participants of your factory tour.

What are the two types of tour guide?

There are many traits that make up a good tour guide including being a good communicator which is essential. The difference between a tour guide and tour guiding is that a tour guide is someone who guides a tour while a tourist guide means someone who guides a tourist. When it comes to factory tours a tour guide is the focal point. Leading group participants through the factory, identifying processes, machinery and people who are responsible for the success of the plant. When planning the tour make sure to have tour guide headsets on hand for your tour manager, guide and guests. The headsets will provide crystal clear audio in areas with loud background noise and lots of space in between people. Don’t let all your preparation and hard work go to waste by not having the group be able to hear the information. Have your message come through loud and clear with Plant-Tours.com!

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