7 June 2023

How to stay productive when travelling on business

You know the problem – we go on a work trip for a few days, but upon our return we are greeted by an inbox full of unread emails and pending tasks.

Here are a few tips to stay productive when travelling on business.

Keep a detailed to-do list

While you are travelling for work, changing flights and taking taxis, you can easily forget about important tasks. Make a list of everything that you need to do before and during your work trip. That way, you’ll be sure that you’ve not missed any important tasks.

Delegate where possible

There is nothing wrong with asking a colleague to take on some of your tasks whilst you are on the go. Just remember to brief them in advance, so that they know what to do and when during your absence. Having someone take care of simple tasks on your to-do list can make a big difference for your workload.

Make the most of your small breaks

Even if your work trip agenda is packed, you are bound to have some downtime. It may be at the airport terminal, on the coach or in lunch breaks between meetings. Make use of these moments to check your emails and stay on top of ongoing tasks. You can get a lot done during these 15-30-minute breaks, which will significantly reduce your workload when you return.

Manage expectations

Don’t hesitate to give your colleagues or clients the heads up that you will be travelling and, thus, will have limited access to your emails. Let them know that they shouldn’t expect a quick reply from you while you are on the move. And remember to set up an out-of-office message indicating when you will be away, the date of your return and a call to action.

Do not forget your work devices

Make sure you have all the devices, like work phones and notebooks, needed for you to do your job remotely. You may not need your laptop for your trip, but it will come in handy when you want to do some work from the hotel or an airport, for example.

Set clear boundaries

Plan your schedule in advance and stick as closely to it as possible. Setting clear boundaries for your work meetings will increase your productivity, helping you make the most of your trip.

Set aside time for rest

Of course, you cannot be working all the time. Work trips can be exhausting as they often involve travel and maybe jetlag so make sure to set aside time for rest. After all, the best way to stay productive is by resting efficiently.

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