by Kyla Camille Nievera, World Executives Digest | Depending on how you look at it, business trips could be a feature that employees find most attractive or something they dread more than any other part of the job. It’s partly about how long someone works for the company and how long they’ve been traveling, but it’s also about how well-organized the trips are.
Focus on both the execution of a trip and the logistics of it. That way you can reduce both the amount of stress your employees may experience, as well as the costs your company will have to pay.
A business travel program
If your company plans to organize a lot of business trips in the future, using a business travel program can help you save quite a bit of money and get a few additional perks as well. Larger companies are able to negotiate discounts directly, but small and medium businesses could use the leverage that comes with having a travel agency. Travel reward cards could also be a useful thing because they allow you to accumulate a certain number of miles with every purchase you make. Some hotels also allow you to pay hotel expenses with miles.
Bringing the office with you
When your employees are going somewhere the full manpower of your office should go as well. Make a checklist of necessary items and go through it before you take off. Start with the documents and plans regarding the trip itself. Make sure to have all the devices, tablets, flash drives, batteries and cords ready in a travel bag so you can focus on more important tasks. Also, for more complex meetings, it might be a good idea to set up a task force at the office and keep in touch with your employees while they are away, especially if there are a lot of decisions to be made on the spot.
Arriving in style
The impression you make is as important as the subject of the meetings you are taking. Taking care of your employees and making sure they are comfortable while traveling isn’t only good for them – it’s also a good way to present your business and your corporative culture to your clients. Having a limo like the one provided by LimosRus pick your employees at the airport creates a certain allure and glamour which can mean a lot in the eyes of the clients.
Feel free to take advantage of high tech if you are travelling a lot. Most of the apps available are applicable for both business and leisure travel. Yelp and TripAdvisor are great for finding inexpensive hotels and TripIt is an itinerary app with which you can plan both the business and the tourist part of the trip. Useful gadgets like Cam Cards are also gaining in popularity. With it you can put the information from all your cards in one place, so you don’t have to worry about carrying an extra wallet with you.
It may seem ungallant to ask your employees to produce these reports, but they can provide useful information. First of all, for small companies, too much personal spending on a business trip could prove to be a significant burden. Bigger companies may not have these problems, but not abusing company funds is a sign of trust and professional ethic. Provide your employees with enough information about what receipts to keep and make a deadline by which the report needs to be delivered.
Proper preparations will make a business trip more productive and comfortable. Have in mind that meetings aren’t just about what is discussed, but also a way to promote your company and brand.