In any sales role you can expect to do a large amount of travel over your life time. You will be the one with more frequent flyer, hotel and car rental than you can manage. So how do you turn this into a positive part of your life.
As a business traveler you can expect to travel 3 Million air miles if you stay focused on a single continent. Go global and 5 million life time miles is realistic. The time spent represents a significant part of your professional life. To manage travel at these levels you need to secure it becomes and enjoyable part of your life or you will have to stop doing it. Most business travelers tend to label their travel time into one of three areas.
The first group use travel time for tactical professional activities. Preparing for the meeting you are traveling to. Working through the mail backlog on the plane or reading through briefings and reports. This is a good use of time but when turned into your primary travel activity, it will reduce your appetite for traveling.
The second group leverages the entertainment and refreshment activities offered by your travel operator. Reading in-flight magazines, watching movies and having a drink or two are all options within easy access. Most business travelers combine these activities with tactical professional activities.
The third large group looks forward to travel as an opportunity to have personal time in a relaxed environment. There are fewer and fewer opportunities in life today to enjoy time with ourselves. I would guess that the people enjoying traveling most are the ones that make part of the travel into a rewarding time. This is perhaps the best time you will get to invest in your own personal development. The time you read interesting articles. This could be the time you read your new book or listen to your audiobook. It can also be the time where you take time to reflect upon new business challenges. This is also a great time to write a blogpost or a section in your journal.
Our individual preferences vary a lot in this area. There is now right or wrong. I think it should be a conscious decision on what you do to make the best out of it. it is a lot of time at stake. We will all have to do a lot of trips when we would have preferred to be home and your routines need to cope with those moments.
Good questions to ask in this area are:
- How much travel do I want to do and what is defining my travel limits? – Business travel will always be in conflict with family and friend life and represent a balancing act.
- Is my travel baseline last flight out in the evening or first in the morning? – Short One-day trips can be as demanding as larger week long trips.
- What is my recipe to limit impact of jetlag? – Your ability to cope with jetlag and how well you sleep on plane set important boundaries.
- What is your personal recipe to make every trip an enjoyable moment? – Small details in routines can make a big difference.
- What is my packing strategy? – Winners have a solid routine for traveling light.
This is a an area with a lot of inspirational reading ideas
- Experienced business travelers reveal their favorite travel tips [BLOG] – by Mandi Woodruff and Business Insider
- Expert business travel tips [BLOG] – by Bloomberg business week
- Expert tips for business travel [BLOG] – Matthew Long, TripIt
- Women on their way [BLOG] – by Wyndham hotels
- Business Travel Success: How to reduce stress, be more productive and travel with confidence [eBOOK] – Carol Margolis
- The sad sick life of the business traveler [ARTICLE] – The Economist
I hope these ideas have inspired you to become person consistently enjoying business travel. I share my own experiences regularly on www.noroadworries.com