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5 Business Benefits of Being WCA Responsible Whale Watch Certified

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HARRY ECKMAN

Chief Executive Officer

ELIZABETH CUEVAS ZIMBRÓN

Whale Heritage Site Project Manager

MIKI TILLETT

Communications Manager

PATICE TALAUE

Certification Manager

STEFF EATON

Operations Manager

ANDREW SCOON

Sussex Dolphin Project, Project Support Officer

THEA TAYLOR

Sussex Dolphin Project, Lead

DYLAN WALKER

Senior Adviser - Whale Heritage Sites

JEAN-MICHEL COUSTEAU

HONORARY PRESIDENT

IAN LEWIS

Trustee, Life College, UK

ROGER MANN

Trustee, Individual Partners

SUZANNE ROGERS

Trustee, Change for Animals Foundation, UK

As a commercial whale or dolphin watching operator, having WCA Responsible Whale Watching certification will enable you to join a unique global club of pioneering whale watching businesses, boost staff performance and customer experiences, and access new markets and customers aligned to your values.

In addition, certification may highlight areas for improvements in your business. The WCA’s unique partnership of experts are on hand to provide help and advice to enable you to make important changes immediately, rather than further down the line when it could affect budget and bottom line.

Here are some of the substantial benefits to the certification:

#1: Provide an improved customer experience

The certification process improves customer service by ensuring that well trained staff provide inspiring and awareness raising information to customers using a range of interactive experiences and tools. There’s nothing that sells a trip quite like a good encounter with a whale or dolphin, but the best guides ensure customers make the most of those moments through information that enables customers to connect more deeply, emotionally, and through knowledge exchange. Certified businesses use a range of techniques for delivering this, bringing more value to your customers, which will reinforce their loyalty to you.

#2: Access new markets.

WCA Responsible Whale Watching certification is the only recognised global certification programme for whale watching. Our criteria are in line with ABTAs Global Animal Welfare Guidelines, and we work with large, as well as specialist, tour operators worldwide to ensure that the whale watching businesses they work with meet the highest standards through WCA Certification. Our clients include Virgin Holidays, Trip Advisor, Club Med, Responsible Travel, TUI, Noble Caledonia, Exodus, Thomas Cook and more.

#3: Boost staff performance and overall effectiveness.

Engaged employees are motivated to implement processes that are put in place to ensure that you offer the highest quality experiences that inspire and educate customers.

Our online and on-site assessments involve a standardised system containing procedures, documents, responsibilities, and processes for quality objectives. It may be summarized as a set of requirements for success and satisfaction.

Certification also requires continued training and developmental programs for employees to equip them with skills to cope with the changing needs of customers and interpretation of our ever changing environment. This will also ensure that your business will continue to operate effectively in a fast-changing world.

#4: Be sustainable and Improve Efficiency. 

Certification enforces a continuous improvement strategy, so you’re always, by design, seeking ways to reduce waste, develop sustainable practices, support marine conservation initiatives, and engage with local communities. These practices are good for the environment, but essentially they are great for your business too, enabling you to spread the word and develop marketing content around story-telling to improve customer reach.       

#5: Join the world’s largest network of whale watching experts

Certified operators automatically become members of the World Cetacean Alliance, the world’s largest marine conservation partnership. Membership enables partners to connect with experts around the world, seek B2B advice, access resources, and promote their work across the network and beyond. Our partners include some of the most experienced and innovative whale and dolphin watching companies worldwide, with knowledge across more than 25 countries. The WCA also includes scientists and conservation professionals willing to provide advice to our whale watching partners on all aspects of responsible practice.    

Sophie Lewis
Author: Sophie Lewis

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