Contrary to popular belief, business trips are often not leisurely activities for business people. In fact, they can be utterly stressful. Many things could go wrong. And you’re responsible for troubleshooting these errors. Failure to do so not only affects your business trip experience but can potentially derail your official responsibilities too. You’ll be hard-pressed to explain to your immediate superior what happened. And if you’re gunning for a promotion, consider your goals compromised.
Thankfully, there are ways to ensure that your business trip goes as smooth sailing as possible. Here are some recommendations.
Partner with a reliable car hire
If you’re staying at your destination for an extended period, you’ll need a rented car. Chances are you already have your go-to car hire if you’ve been to the same destination before. Now, for those places you’re visiting for the first time, it pays to research your car hire options well before paying up.
You need a reliable car to complete your itinerary. You do not want a car that will malfunction while you’re on your way to your next meeting. Make sure your chosen car rental provider maintains their vehicles well, from brake spare parts to wheels.
Choose your accommodation wisely
You will likely do some work at your hotel. You want the space to be work conducive. For example, the internet connection should be top-notch. Otherwise, you might need to go down to the lobby to get a reliable signal. You might frustrate your Zoom colleagues.
Your room itself should be clean and properly maintained. Unsightly stains or bad lighting can and will affect your mood. You might find it hard to get any work done. Read client reviews before booking your accommodation. If someone else is doing the booking for you, make sure you clearly outline your expectations.
Have all your files in the cloud
Even if your company bought you the best professional-grade laptop, you cannot rely on your laptop’s storage alone. Your relevant work files should be in the cloud. That way, should your laptop crash, or if your laptop is stolen, you still have access to your reports or presentations.
You cannot get away with explaining to the person you’re meeting with that you need to postpone due to technical failure. That makes you look incompetent.
Pack only what you need
Don’t pack luggage with two weeks’ worth of wardrobe if you’re traveling only for three days. You’ll be carrying that luggage around and it could be a source of frustration for you. That’s most true if you’re on the tail end of your business trip and you’ve already been through a series of stressful meetings.
Pack only the essentials. A couple of sets of business wear, your toiletries, and a couple of pajamas maybe.
Have snacks at hand
While in transit to and from meetings, you might get the munchies. Your sugar levels might drop. You need something ready to fill your tummy with. You can shop for snacks once you’ve reached your destination. You don’t have to include this in your luggage from home.
Just make sure you opt for healthy snacks. Think trail mix. Or fruit slices. You’ll get your needed boost from these foods without feeling guilty.
Know your destination well
Do a bit of research about the destination you’re visiting. This is most crucial if you’re traveling overseas. Keep in mind that there are unwritten rules embedded in a particular culture. You do not want to unwittingly offend people because you failed to do your homework.
For instance, in Japan, punctuality is important. You cannot afford to come late to a meeting even if you’re missing the schedule only by a few minutes. You do not want to turn off people you’re trying to do business with.
A business trip allows you to get out of the office. You’ll be visiting new towns and cities and this change of environment can revitalize your mind and body. If you’re on the verge of burnout, a business trip might just be what you need to bounce back. That is if a paid holiday’s still out of the question. Plus, you’ll be traveling with all expenses paid by your company.
For your next business trip, make the most of the experience. While you’re expected to work while away, you can also squeeze in personal goals in your schedule, such as sightseeing. Just make sure everything’s in order and you’ve made all the essential preparation, like the ones in this list. Doing so will help you prevent any untoward incident that could turn your trip into a disaster.