On the Road Again: A Guide to Making the Most of Your Time on Business Trips
5th March 2014
You could be forgiven for thinking that business trips are a thing of the past given the clever technology that has become ingrained in our working lives. But sometimes only going out to visit a factory or to meet with a CEO face-to-face will do the job. When such trips arise it is prudent to figure out how you can make the most of your time on the road to keep your productivity high and your “when I’m back in the office” list empty.
Plan your productivity
Whether you organise your itinerary yourself or have a secretary to handle the arrangements, be aware of where you need to be and when and pencil in potential times for getting on with work tasks. Awareness of when you will, and will not, be able to check emails, make phone calls, write up reports etc while away is the first step to making the most of your time out of the office.
Sitting on a plane/train/taxi is a great opportunity to do some catching up. Be sure to load your MP3 player with the latest business podcasts and grab those copies of trade magazines that just never seem to get read. You will enjoy these much more than that cheesy in-flight movie or the chatter in the “quiet” carriage.
Take every opportunity you can to recharge your phone, tablet, laptop etc. Most trains and coaches have power sockets, and many pubs and coffee shops do too. Use what power you have wisely – too long on Candy Crush and you might run out of battery when you have to double-check train times or find your hotel reservation email. Eco mode, for you and your gadgets, is your best friend while travelling.
Be WiFi aware
Know where you are likely to get WiFi, and if you will have to pay. Check the connectivity situation not only for your meeting point and hotel, but also at stops along the way. Coffee shops and fast-food outlets are pretty safe bets for free WiFi these days.
Arrange meeting meals
If you don’t have enough free time to arrange an official meeting with a contact organise an informal meet-up over a meal instead. After all, everyone needs to eat.
Make your situation known
Phone calls are best made somewhere quiet with few distractions, but it is not always easy to concentrate on the call and make notes at the same time. Explain to the other person that you are in a taxi/waiting for a train and ask them to take things down and email the summary over to you.
Date: 5th March 2014 | Category: Productivity