Although leaders can often dread business trips due to the effect on their workload and scheduling, there are many ways in which they can turn these trips into opportunities to improve their own company. Rather than simply attend conferences and meetings, here is a selection of steps that you should take to make sure that you return home with an abundance of ideas to take your business further.
One of the most important steps that you need to take in order to make the most of your business trip is to plan in advance. This can help you to get the most out of your time and to make sure that you do not waste precious hours on tasks that could have been completed much more quickly if pre-planning had taken place. For instance, instead of driving around for hours trying to find a parking spot in which to store your vehicle, you should consider pre-booking your airport parking. For instance, Parkon.com offers LaGuardia Airport long term parking for both national and international business trips.
Although you might believe that simply meeting other business executives at talks is enough, you should go the extra mile by seeking to network with a wide range of business leaders in the country or area that you are visiting. You can network with others on a one-on-one basis by attending networking groups in the area or by visiting conferences, even if they are not in your original schedule. By making the effort to form a connection with other leaders, you will be able to find out more about international and national business, get advice from others with a different cultural experience, and even be able to build partnerships that you can utilize in the future.
Travel is an excellent opportunity for business leaders to research their industry in a different market or area. Not only can this give you an insight into potential locales for expansion, but it can also help you to understand the wider market and the context of your business on a global level. To do this, you should consider conducting market research, contacting and looking into firms operating in the area, and networking with business leaders in the country. By doing this, it may also help you to overcome some of the cultural challenges and differences that you may have to face when doing business internationally.
However, you will only get one perspective of your destination if you plan to only visit the area that your meeting or conference is being held in. Instead, you should try to book an extra day or two onto the end of your trip during which you can explore other areas of your destination country. This will enable you to get a broader insight into the reality of the country that you are visiting and how your industry is operating around the country as a whole.
As a leader, goal-setting should be second nature, and this is no different when you are traveling. Making travel goals can allow you to ensure that your time is spent as productively as possible, allowing you to get the outcomes and personal growth that you need without having regrets once you get back into the office.