I had to check this book out of the library several times because I would have it, read a few pages, and then let it languish until it was time to return it. Invariably there would be holds on the book so I would have to reserve it again. Finally, I have gone cover to cover and it was worth the read.
Full disclosure here. My nephew works for G Adventures. He is currently a Chief Experience Officer in South America. That is what led me to pick up the book. It is not what led me to finish it.
Looptail is the story of the man and of his vision for a company that delivers a service like no other. I was pretty impressed at the blood, sweat and tears that created G Adventures. If you delve further, you will see that he stands by his beliefs. He definitely came from the school of hard knocks and I found it particularly amusing when he stated that "nothing is worse than reading a business book littered with inspirational quotes and stories but has no results or tangible things to take away and use in your own life and work". Gee, that covers a lot of business books out there.
If his belief in what he was creating had not been so strong, he surely would have been swayed by others. That point came through again and again. It served as a reminder to me as well. It is easy to listen too long to others and stop listening to your own voice. Sure you have to do your research, but sometimes you will be going it alone. That doesn't mean you are on the wrong track, just a different one from the majority.
Bruce (I feel as if I know him after reading this book) talks a lot about service and his comment that "if you don't love your customers, someone else will," really hits home. You and I both know that every business has competition and our competitors are more than willing to scoop our customers if we are neglecting them. He also talks a lot about your company as a brand, commenting that your brand is not yours alone. It is what other people think of you and your company.
The author doesn't just toss out quotes to fill pages. Indeed, they are relevant to the topic and each bear thinking about. I could happily sit down and read the book again. I don't say that often but I really relate to his quest to remain true to his original goal. He made some incredibly tough changes to his business model, even while others questioned the decisions. He persevered. He, to this day, follows Charles Darwin's belief that "it is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change."
You really should read this book.