As glamorous as a life of constant travel sounds, it doesn’t always live up to that reputation for busy entrepreneurs. Traveling becomes exhausting, is often times lonely, and adds on to an already hectic schedule. The thing is, most business travel is incredibly chaotic. With such a demanding workweek, it’s important to perfect systems of productivity and time management. In order to make their business travel as efficient as possible, entrepreneurs must know some specific tricks of the trade. Commit the following tips to memory:
Never part with your business card—and I mean never. You can’t foresee whom you will randomly encounter. The woman sitting next to you on the plane could be new business for your company. The man drinking coffee next to you in your hotel lobby could be a new partner. Although you’re on the go, you’re still representing yourself and your organization. Don’t make the mistake of underestimating the power of networking while traveling. Being equipped with a business card shows that you’re serious about your business, an admirable trait that will attract the right people. Make a habit of always leaving your house with enough cards.
Be sure to have every event precisely prearranged. This will allow you to evade further stress, missed deadlines, and problems you didn’t even think you could have. Creating an organized timetable, almost hour by hour, will do wonders for your travel. Planning ahead will keep you level headed throughout your packed agenda, as you will go into your trip having a clear understanding of what needs to get done and when it needs to be done. Because distractions are unavoidable, you’ll feel significantly calmer knowing what your priorities are. Keep in mind not to schedule anything right after your flight is meant to land—give yourself enough time to account for potential delays. That’s not to say you won’t accomplish anything that first day; just give yourself a little wiggle room. For overseas travel, try to get early check-in at your hotel or access to an airport business lounge in case you want to shower or freshen up before an important meeting.
Arrive prepared by learning the ins and outs of the market you’re flying into. Conducting due diligence about the city you’re traveling to is essential, especially when going to another country. You will be interacting with colleagues from a completely different background with distinctive customs; lack of such knowledge will appear obvious and can cause considerable damage to your business with them going forward. Show that you care and respect those you’re meeting with by getting to know their rules. Failing to do so could result in not only coming off as unsophisticated, you may even seem insulting. Moreover, know your transportation options to and from the airport and between meetings. Check if you should rent a car, use public transport, or order an Uber. Don’t get stuck in an airport trying to figure out not only where to go, but how to get there.