Business travel: how to still hit deadlines

As anyone who has traveled on business in the past will testify, it’s not all five star hotels and celebrity treatment. On the contrary, life on the road is difficult and unless you are in a small percentage of companies, a lot of people find that working back home in the office is a whole lot easier.

Something that makes it challenging is the fact that it just becomes harder to work. Those deadlines that once appeared reasonable now seem all-but impossible – there are umpteen distractions and routine goes out of the window.

Bearing the above in mind, if you are about to head off on a business trip, here are some pointers to ensure that you can complete the maximum amount of work and still hit those elusive deadlines.

Your hotel matters… enormously

At times, it’s far too easy to keep the guys in finance happy.

If you’re looking to stay productive, this approach needs to be scrapped. Your choice of hotel does have an impact on productivity, and it raises from umpteen points.

It might be the proximity to the airport, the amount of business meeting spaces available or just the quality of Wi-Fi.

Suffice to say, some hotels are suited for business trips and others aren’t. Choose one that is, and you’ll soon find that your productive headaches diminish immensely.

Plan your project list meticulously

Tuesday might be your day for reporting, and Wednesday might be your usual day for checking in with your third-party advisors. Well, your week of travel might result in this changing.

In other words, you’ve got to work around your schedule. If you know that you are going to be traveling a lot on one day, plan in your calls for then on your hands-free. If you know that you’ll have a lot of desk time, it goes without saying that this isn’t going to work on a travel day (unless you are set for hours upon hours on a plane).

Budget for waiting time

Nobody likes to wait around, but in the spirit of the perfect business trip this time is invaluable. The most productive business trips will be those in which you can actually budget for waiting time – as these are the periods you can get your head down and really make some progress.

If you add an hour extra to each flight you take, not only will you be minimizing the chance if something goes wrong, but most of the time you will have extra time where you can sit outside your boarding gate and make progress with your work.

You might have to work more beforehand

Let’s leave the bad news to the very end.

While you can make up a lot of time whilst taking care with all of the above, let’s not forget that you are unlikely to have eight hours or more of solid work time during your trip.

Ultimately, it means that you might need to plan beforehand and complete more work before you depart. It’s not going to be the easiest thing to do, but it will at least alleviate stress as you embark on your trip.

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