Double Decker Tours of Washington

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Sightseeing Bus Tours Business Plan

Management Summary

Mike Coleman and Paul Williams will serve as member managers, however, DDTOW is a small company and its administrative staff will share in management duties and decision making.  This will make it important for each member of the team to be capable in all aspects of the business.  Prerequisites for all administrative employees will be cash handling, personnel management, computer skills and sightseeing/tour experience. 

We will train our staff to become competent in these areas and we will embark on a continuous training program for all employees.  Our operations staff will consist of experienced driver/guides, many of whom have already worked in the local market and we will contract out to certain narrators for special projects.  DDTOW will contract the maintenance of the buses to Peter Pan in Tuxedo, Maryland, which services Old Town Trolley and Grayline's Lil Red Trolley, so that the fleet will be well maintained at all times.

7.1 Personnel Plan

DDTOW will begin operating with 22 full time positions.  The positions are as follows:

    • Member Manager - Michael F. Coleman
    • Member Business Development - Paul F. Williams
    • Marketing / Sales Associates (4)
    • Courtesy Captains (4)
    • Driver/guides (12)

Member Manager and owner, Michael F. Coleman, age 50, has knowledge of the local sightseeing and touring industry in the Washington area.  Mike has gained his sightseeing and tour experience from working for Tourmobile and conducting walking tours in the city over the past two year.  From that experience, he has gain an unique perspective of what it would take to start and run a successful tour and sightseeing company.  Mike has also been involved in scheduling, guiding and many administrative functions needed for running a business. 

Before starting Double Decker Tours of Washington, LLC, Mike sold health care products under the Equinox label until the company went out of business in November 1999.  From that experience, Mike learned how to motivate a sales force, help design new sales strategies and develop creative ways to market the products.

Before that, Mike was a software and database consultant to different companies throughout the Washington area working for such firms as Computer Sciences Corporation, Computer and Applied Sciences, Inc., General Services, Inc., the General Services Administration and PATA USA.  In this capacity, Mike was responsible for scheduling, customer service, writing numerous reports and billing of services. 

Mike also worked as a member of the board for the H Street Northeast Merchants and Professional Association.  Working on the board with numerous business people gave Mike an insight into the day-to-day operations of small businesses and gave him a chance to meet other business people through the associations membership in the Greater Washington Board of Trade.  Mike, as a member of the board, also worked on the H Street Festival Committee in 1999, which re-introduced the H Street Festival back to Washington after a long hiatus. 

Mike also wrote and independently published a book called the Fitness Diary, which allowed fitness enthusiasts to document their workouts.  The Fitness Diary was well received by bodybuilders and those that just wanted to look good.

Member Business Development, Paul F. Williams, has over 30 years of entrepreneurial experience in computer and information technology, export promotion, international business development, private sector development, technology transfer and management and technical assistance domestically and in Africa.  Mr. Williams is founder and president of THE INFORMATION PROCESSING COMPANY, INC. (TIPCO, INC.), an international trade and business development firm.  His company consults with governmental and private sector organizations, businesses and individuals on issues involving domestic and international trade and business development. 

Mr. Williams was the counselor and instructor in International Business Development/Export-Import; past Counselor/Director of Cities In Schools Youth Entrepreneurial Empowerment Project; creator and coordinator of the Volunteer Consultant Corp at Howard University Small Business Development Center; Chairperson, International Trade Committee of the Black Presidents' Roundtable Association (BPRA); Chairperson, International Trade Committee of the D.C. Chamber of Commerce and many other accomplishments.  Mr. Williams will develop strategies for increasing business for DDTOW.

Marketing/Sales Associates:  The individuals selected for these positions will have extensive experience in the local tourism and sightseeing industry.  They will have a proven track record in generating sales.  Their responsibilities in this position will be to develop marketing and sales materials and campaigns as well as supervising sales personnel as we grow.

Courtesy Captains:  The individuals selected for these positions will have customer service experience as they will be our face to the public.  They will hand out literature about the company and our tours, help customers board the buses and answer questions or complaint that come up.  The Captains will also take photographs of our customers as they board the buses for later sales.

Driver/Guides:  The individuals selected will be required to have a Commercial Drivers License and Tour Guide License.  Drivers will have local knowledge of the city and they will be responsible for the safety of the buses and passengers and will present informative, humorous tours to our customers.

Personnel Plan
Year 1 Year 2 Year 3
Member Manager $72,000 $84,000 $96,000
Member Business Development $50,000 $60,000 $72,000
Driver/Guides $432,000 $450,000 $500,000
Marketing/Sales Associates $100,000 $125,000 $156,000
Courtesy Captains $96,000 $120,000 $172,000
Total People 22 24 29
Total Payroll $750,000 $839,000 $996,000

7.2 Compensation and Incentive Plan

Compensation and incentives for employees and managers of Double Decker Tours of Washington, LLC is as follows:

Member-Manager$72,00010% of profit after taxes
Member-Business Development$50,0005% of profit after taxes
Marketing/Sales Associate$25,0005% of gross monthly sales
Courtesy Captain$20,000Tips and Monthly Customer Service Awards
Driver/Guide$30,000Tips and Monthly Customer Service Awards

Courtesy Captains and Driver/Guides will receive overtime pay (currently estimated at 20%) in addition to their regular salary.  Also all employees will be covered under a health, dental, and vision plan after three months of employment.  Plans for a profit sharing or 401(k) plan will be available for employees.

At Double Decker Tours of Washington, we believe in an incentive based entrepreneurial approach to management.  To have the employee want to work and make money, we will institute programs that will benefit the employee as well as the company.  For example, when we sell photographs of our passengers, the Courtesy Captains will make a commission on the photos sold during their shift.  How this will benefit them is that a receipt will be processed with the CC name on it so that when a purchase has been transacted, that CC is credited with the sale, thus the commission.  At this point, we will assess what commission will be paid.  For the drivers, we will allow them to compete for tips as well as overtime pay.  But we will also keep tabs on their attendance and appearance.  At the end of the month, those drivers that have the best attendance record and appearance will be allowed to compete for the monthly bonus.

7.3 Advisory Committee

Mr. Coleman is in the process of assembling a group of established businessman as his board of advisors so that he may learn from them the lessons they have learned before encountering them himself.


7.4 Professional Support

  1. Stitcher, Mosley & Company, PA of Lanham-Seabrook Maryland has been tapped to be our accountants.
  2. DH Lloyd and Associates have been contacted about our insurance needs.