“Ugh! I’m going on a business trip.”
We’ve all thought or uttered this particular phrase (or something similar) at one point or another, either to others or ourselves. It’s an epiphany that induces sympathy and a myriad of angst-themed scenarios.
Typically, travelling for work is thought to be a dull journey: one where you attend a bunch of meetings - in a foreign town, city or country - do the company’s biddings and head back home (or straight to the office in some instances). Excruciating, right?
Honestly, this trip doesn’t have to be that dreadful. Here are some thought starters to point you in the right direction:
1. Have your go-bag on the go
Being a Travel Manager, you know that these trips can be sporadic, as such, you need to be ready at a moment’s notice. Having your designated travel suitcase somewhere within reach (at the office or in the car boot) cuts down your preparation time, and helps take the sting out of packing - let’s face it, no one really likes doing this last minute anyways.
2. Be social in the business lounge
As opposed to having your face glued to your phone or buried in a stack of papers, use the time in the waiting lounge to chat and mingle with other business travellers. You’ll be surprised what you’re able to unearth by just engaging people in a simple conversation. Besides, it’s a lounge – a social venue - after all?
3. Indulge in some recreational listening
For that next work-related trip, give yourself a sonic treat: create a music playlist, catch up on industry news via podcasts (most global news outlets, like Monocle have a rich repository of audio programs), and download a few episodes of your favourite comedy show.
The goal is to catch up on some me-time by indulging your sense of hearing – give your eyes a rest. You’ll be relaxed and in a good mood before, during and even after the trip.
4. Break out a sweat outdoors
Exercising is not only a great way of staying revitalized and shaking off the travel woes, it can also provide you with an opportunity for exploration, especially in a foreign city. So, whether it’s an early morning jog by the lakefront or power walking through a city park, get active and release those endorphins whilst doing some sightseeing.
5. Take advantage of industry events
As someone who enjoys being a part of your business community, finding and attending related industry events makes your trip genuinely enjoyable. Whether it’s a business breakfast, lunch-and-learn or dinner gala, take full advantage of these social gatherings in the city you’re in. They offer a relaxed and informal atmosphere to get to know your peers and the industry at large from a different perspective.
6. Catch up with someone in person
Make it a point of duty to meet up with a close friend or even a LinkedIn acquaintance - in person and not over the phone - nothing beats a face-to-face interaction. Fitting this time into your trip is a great way to wind-down after the monotony of business endeavors, and also strengthen your social circle.
7. Make souvenir shopping fun
There you have it, seven solid suggestions to help make your next corporate travel an exciting expedition. Hopefully, travelling for business becomes less of a chore and something you look forward to. For more information on how business travel relates to the financials of your business, check out this page here.
Written by Ross Fastuca @Locomote