Jun22

Staying Connected: Managing Your Business While Traveling

Manage your business

Staying Connected: Managing Your Business While Traveling

Most business professionals would admit that there’s an element of jet-setting glamour to traveling for business, especially if your journeys take you to historic foreign capitals and exotic destinations. However, more experienced travelers, especially those who are responsible for running the business, may tell a somewhat different story. Frequent travel can make it difficult to stay on top of things back at the office and to deal with problems as they arise. That can quickly turn into a stressful and chaotic situation unless you have a plan for managing your work when you’re on the go.

Plan your workday

Everybody has a certain time of day when they’re at their most effective and productive. Between time changes and jet lag, it can be hard to arrange the days so that you’re cranking out the work at optimal times. If you’re at your best in the afternoon after a good lunch, schedule meetings in the morning and do your “office work” in the afternoon and evening, if necessary. It’s also important to be working at approximately the same time as your colleagues back at the office, in case you need questions answered or to access resources they can help put you in touch with.

Be discriminating about demands

If you’re responsible for the business, there are lots of demands on your time whether you’re in the office or hopping from city to city. You know the difference between those things that need to be addressed right away and what can wait until you’re in a more manageable situation. Avoid agreeing to requests tacitly before you’ve had a chance to think through your schedule and really prioritize what’s going on while you’re traveling. You might end up buried in more work than you can handle upon your return, which won’t do you or your clients any good.

Planning

If there’s ever a time to have everything planned out, it’s when you’re on an extended business trip. A good rule of thumb is to plan and work ahead before leaving to reduce the stress factor and avoid having to put out fires from a distance. Maintain an up-to-date calendar with dates/times of appointments that you can work around. Find ways to make the most of your available time. Be prepared to work offline if you find yourself temporarily stuck in places with poor or no Internet connectivity. An accurate itinerary makes it easier to forecast and budget for  your expenses. Choose business credit cards that offer travel-specific benefits. According to Fundera, the Chase Ink Business Preferred card is one of the best for business owners looking for travel rewards with lowest possible fee.

Take back your work time

Just like when things get hectic at home, you may need to set aside an entire day once in a while just to getting things done. If you’ll be gone for two weeks, try to set aside a day now and then  just for work. It’ll help you when you get back home and keep you focused on your business objectives while you’re physically separated from the office. Treat these “workdays” as you would a transitional day when you get back and have a lot of catching up to do.

There’s usually a surprise or two waiting for you when on a long business trip. The more you can plan ahead of time, the better equipped you’ll be to roll with the punches when the unexpected happens. Remember, planning and preparation will also help lighten your burden when you get back to the office.

Courtesy of Pixabay.com.

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