With the world working on a 24/7 clock, the excuse to switch off for those hours spent traveling on a plane for business has gone. In fact, it’s become the best time to catch up.
As my creative agency Beautiful Destinations grew, the amount of time I spent abroad rapidly increased, which meant opportunities to stop my inbox from exploding and keep projects progressing decreased.
Once you’re in the thick of meetings, the best way to maintain productivity is preparation and keeping to a normal routine.
Here are eight tips to help maximize productivity while your travel.
1. Make plans
Create a robust plan of events and meetings ahead of your trip so it’s clear where there are gaps in your diary that can be used productively for important phone calls, additional meetings or writing content. When you are in a different time zone you may need to factor in either early or late calls with the office too.
Confirm accommodation for each night that you’re away and ensure your transport is organized in advance to avoid having to spend time looking for hotel and ticket availability during your trip. This will also reduce stress levels so you can spend more time calmly focusing on the work in hand.
2. Maintain a healthy routine
Frequent travel, particularly flying, can impact your immune system, making you more susceptible to illness. Try to maintain a healthy routine to maximize your productivity levels.
If you’re jet-lagged and can’t sleep, some exercise may wake you up.
While it’s often more convenient to pick up fast food and unhealthy snacks when you’re on the move, they can leave you feeling bloated and tired. Opt for healthy snacks and meals, drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration and avoid excessive caffeine, alcohol and tobacco, which can make you feel lethargic.
Where possible, exercise outside to increase revitalization and boost your mood.
3. Get plenty of sleep
A good sleep routine is essential for enhancing productivity levels. It can take a while for your body and mind to adapt to different time zones when flying. A great tip is to adjust the time on your watch and/or phone before take off so you have already mentally adapted to the time zone of a new destination upon arrival.
4. Allow yourself downtime
Make time to explore the destination you’re in and immerse yourself in the local culture. As well as providing you with new experiences, it will stimulate creativity and may even spark new ideas which you can apply to something you’re working on. When I’m on the road, as well as taking photos, I’m always on the lookout for video opportunities to post on Beautiful Destinations.
5. Make the most of spontaneous networking opportunities
I’m always looking for new ways to expand my network, both on social media and in person. Being on the road is an opportune time to meet new people from different walks of life.
Whether you’re at the airport, in your hotel or exploring the destinations, take time to network and strike up conversations with people you meet along the way. It may be that they can benefit you professionally if they work in a similar field and can offer a fresh perspective on something you’re working on.
6. Stay updated with the latest news and trends
Subscribe to news and trend alerts which pop up on your phone daily. This is essential to ensure that the content you’re creating or the discussion points you raise in meetings are current and relevant. It will show that you have your finger on the pulse, which is essential when speaking to both existing and potential new clients.
7. Listen to podcasts
If your journey requires a lot of driving, inevitably you will not have the opportunity to get much work done. You can take this time to listen to educational or inspirational podcasts such as TED Talks Daily. Hearing the insights of others based on experiences in their personal or professional lives can be invaluable as well as emotionally stimulating when you’re on the road.
This is the most important one that I follow. When you start a company, it’s hard to give up the reins but through delegation you will tick off those tasks on your to do list.
Founded by Jeremy Jauncey in 2012, Beautiful Destinations is an award-winning creative agency behind one of the world’s largest travel communities on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Snapchat and Weibo with over 17 million followers across 180 countries on social media.