Doing business abroad, as well as handling business while travelling, is an essential part of being an international business person or investor. There are several key actions which you need to be prepared for while being abroad, giving yourself the best chance of successfully tackling business travel tasks.
We’ll be taking a brief look at the challenges that doing business while travelling internationally can bring, as well as the strategic tools for overcoming these obstacles.
How is business travel challenges?
While travelling for business can be somewhat exciting, it brings with it a number of logistical issues and physical stresses. Visiting clients and partners overseas to conduct face-to-face meetings is key, but poor planning can lead to suboptimal environments for conducting business.
Sticking to corporate travel policies can be exhausting, especially if systems are disjointed and difficult to use in line with an expenses process. Many businesspeople also need access to their finances in real-time while travelling, something that can be tricky without the right setup.
Each of these challenges comes together to pose a collective environment of risk toward businesses. If one of these obstacles causes your business to stumble, it can have a larger effect on your business – so it’s best to address these areas and implement solutions.
Business travel challenges and overcoming them
Keep on top of your personal needs
One of the most fundamental challenges about business travel when done frequently is the physical toll it can take on you. Long-haul flights can leave you feeling jetlagged which could affect you if you have a business meeting the very next morning.
Make sure to stay hydrated when travelling and try to adjust to the local time as well as you can. If you can, using a ‘bleisure travel’ approach can allow you to mix a business trip with leisure time abroad. This can give you extra days to adjust before a business meeting.
Doing research ahead of time can ensure you know where all your essential lifestyle things will be – a local gym, restaurant, café, park, etc.
Book ahead and book smart
As the physical act of travelling can be one of the most demanding parts, reducing the impact it’ll have on you is important. Booking overnight flights can be an opportunity to sleep on the way, waking up feeling refreshed upon arrival.
Minimise the time spent waiting for changeovers as much as possible, but where these are unavoidable you can use this time wisely. Pre-book workspaces if you intend to use a layover as an opportunity to catch up on work while you wait.
Take a light load with you
Depending on how long you’ll be travelling for, you will want to pack the essentials you can’t live without – but not too much. Being stuck with a large suitcase to deal with can leave you less mobile when you’re travelling for business.
Well-appointed accommodation can help you avoid the need to pack items that will otherwise be supplied by a hotel or serviced apartment. This way, you can pack light and fly through transfers without worrying about luggage getting lost.
Control your finances from anywhere
Make the most of mobile technology to access your finances from anywhere in the world. Mobile money apps are incredibly versatile when travelling abroad, as you can easily process money transfers to Europe, North America, or anywhere else you may need to supply funds to.
This can also be handy when you need to check investments while travelling, as forex apps are now easily available for you to monitor stocks while out and about.
Employ a best-in-class expenses system
Once a business trip has all wrapped up, consolidating receipts and invoices for expenses can be a hassle – especially if it’s all manually done. This can leave a single business trip impacting your business for months to come.
Implementing an expenses management system which compasses travel bookings too will make the whole process of business travel a lot more streamlined.
Look to these five areas as starting points when optimising your business travel and conducting business overseas. Use common sense for where else could be improved and resolve issues the best you can with revised processes before they become deeper problems.