When you’re trying to stay productive, business travel can take away your ability to get things done.
It can be a tricky, time-consuming process to fit the rest of your working life around the practicalities of getting from A to B.
But whether you’re headed to a meeting, commuting to the office, or going overseas, careful planning can take the stress right out of business travel. With the right preparation, you can keep disruption to a minimum – and even keep working on the move.
There are just three key areas to consider: the parts of your journey you can control, the potential issues you can’t, and what you can get done while you’re travelling.
Control what you can…
Initially, it’s a good idea to prepare a business itinerary built around your requirements. Where do you need to be and when? These are the things you are in control of, and a good itinerary will plan your route and timetable in detail.
During my time at an Embassy, I’d put together an itinerary that covered outward and inward travel, onward travel including car rental, hotels and accommodation, and then the nitty-gritty of meetings and events each day. Ideally, you’ll also include the practicalities of travel that people often forget, like getting ready to leave, packing, and walking from the office to your car.
The more exhaustive this itinerary is, the more aware you’ll be of just how much time you’ll be spending on the move.
Then, armed with that information, you can make informed decisions about the rest of your working timetable – and decide whether you’ll be working while you travel or taking a well-earned break!
… and prepare for the rest!
Of course, the hard thing about travel is that it’s not all under your control.
Whatever the scale of your journey, there are hundreds of outside influences that could have a huge impact, including:
Traffic on the roads, Local and International emergencies International holidays and occasions Transport problems (delays and changes in service)
It’s essential that you consider these outside influences and worst-case scenarios as well as your planned itinerary. But from monitoring local news to looking at typical traffic levels, this can add yet another drain on your time. For an exhaustive approach that considers every possibility, a virtual assistant can help.
Keep working while you travel
Finally, don’t assume that all travel time is wasted. You can find ways to stay productive – even if you’re not staying in the office!
Laptops, smartphones, and tablets give you new opportunities to stay connected. If I was helping a client, I’d look for connection points along the journey, from train stations to airport lounges.
What’s more, when internet connections aren’t available, it can be a great idea to schedule those offline activities that you need to get done, from making a phone call to writing up a report. For many, it’s a rare chance to get away from all the distractions that the internet has to offer!
There’s no avoiding business travel – but a considered, strategic approach can make it a lot less traumatic. If you need help planning your itinerary, get in touch.