Many people in employed jobs or even personal businesses sometimes have to conduct business travel. Unfortunately, some consider such trips as avenues to get travel allowances, get to see new places and simply get away from the office workload. But we, in the rise and shine fraternity, find business trips as avenues where successful people can maximise business value but only if conducted appropriately. We do hold that if business trips are conducted carelessly they can be a wasteful burden on people and profits. So, what can you do to ensure that you maximise the value you gain from business trips?
There are three things you need to do to ensure that you maximise the value you gain from business trips. First is the planning ahead of the trip. Make sure that you confirm the engagement you are travelling for so that you do not show up only to discover that the people you are meant to meet are not available. Plan for the agenda of your business travel and make sure that everyone involved understands and agrees to the agenda.
If there are documents that need to be reviewed ahead of the meeting, make sure that they are circulated in time. If you are to make a presentation, make sure it is prepared to the best of your ability. Rehearse your presentation as many times as possible, polishing it each time you are rehearsing again. Pay attention also to your travel logistics including mode of travel and timing, requirements for your travel, accommodation and food if necessary and all other important logistics.
The second important contribution to maximising the value of your business trips is completing the agenda of the travel. Make sure that you accomplish the mission of your trip. There is no reason to travel again to do the same job you are meant to deliver during the first trip. During the business trip, make sure you do your best to complete the business. Keep reminding yourself of what it is that you need to take out of the trip or meeting you have. Do not be carried away by the new ideas that come up or new agenda items that get suggested. Remember that your number one priority is the things you were meant to do during the business travel.
The third and final important contribution to maximising the value of business travel is the after travel actions. Make sure that during the trip, you clearly record the actions that are agreed and allocate them to appropriate parties. Once you get back to your base, you need to assign all the actions as was agreed or decided during the trip. Every action must bear the deadline for it and this should be made known to all the relevant parties concerned with the particular action.
Do not expect the actions to happen on their own. You may be required to make regular follow-ups with action holders to be sure that action is taking place. I find it easier to follow up on action assigned to others when I am on top of the actions that were assigned to me. Try your best to lead by example. Deliver your actions with speed and share with all the concerned before you can follow up with others. However, if your actions are taking long or depend on the input of others, do not let this overly delay your follow ups. You can simply share the current status of your actions which are in progress as you check the progress being made by others.
Business travel is never cheap. Only those who maximise the value of their business trips stand to gain and not lose from the investment they make into their travel. If you follow the simple ideas we have discussed today on maximising the value of your business trips, you will rise and shine in the field of business travel. Good luck!!!