Business Travel Blunders
You’re away on business travel, and you’re so focused on your business it’s easy to lose connection with your loved ones at home. You also forget to bring them a souvenir from your trip so on the way home, you rush through the airport and you grab the first thing you find from a random tourist shop. We’ve all been there, right?
A Little bit of Preparation
It doesn’t have to be like this. A little bit of preparation and thought before your trip even starts can go a long way to keep your family connected and give you peace of mind. I made a commitment to myself and my family that I would only business travel every two months, for less than a week at a time. This means that I’ve had to turn down conferences that are too close together. But this is part of my self-care strategy which I share in my blog post, Is Balance in Business & Life Achievable?
When I travel for work, I try to focus all of my energy on the conference and try not to call home too much. I recently went on a trip that was going to last six days, instead of the usual four. My 9-year- old daughter really misses me when I’m gone, so I stayed up until 3 a.m. the night before my trip to make a special project for her.
Business Travel Love Notes
I created six envelopes to countdown to the day I was coming home. On the front of each envelope I wrote a different message, such as, “6 days until we can watch movies together,” “5 days until you can share your stuffed animal with me,” and “1 day until I get to snuggle with you.” And then I used markers to decorate the envelope with hearts and stars, just like she would.
On the back of the envelope I left messages relating to the things happening in her life during the week. I told her that I knew she was going to play great at her softball game, and I told her how proud I was of her for completing her school’s standardized testing. Inside, I included a pack of Pokémon cards, or for the days when she had standardized testing, an extra little pin and a coin.
My mother gave my daughter the envelopes at random times. It turned into a game for her. She would run around the house looking for them, and she was never sure when she’d get a new one. It gave her something to look forward to and focus on, instead of how much she missed me. It also helped me worry about her less on the nights when I wasn’t able to call home.
When I was at the Act Like A Success conference, I mentioned to Christine St Vil what I set up for my daughter. She knew it would resonate with the other attendees, so she gave me the chance to share my story during one of her sessions. Afterward, people wanted to talk about the envelopes and were excited to hear about a way to stay in touch with their loved ones.
Leave Your Stamp Behind
There are so many ways you can leave your stamp behind but here are six ideas to get you started. Depending on how much time you have, you can set up:
- Scavenger hunts using toys or personal notes. One woman told me that she leaves notes in her husband’s socks and around the house when she’s gone.
- Daily cookie, flower or fruit deliveries.
- A paper chain counting down to the day you return.
If you don’t have the time or the craftiness to make something, you can use technology to let your family members know you are still thinking of them.
- Make a video of yourself reading your child’s favorite book for them to watch at bedtime.
- Use your phone to text 30-second video messages during the day. It can simply be to say “Good morning” or “I love you and I miss you.”
- Arrange to have a quick Skype or FaceTime call in between sessions or before your plans for the evening begin.
Consider each one of these little projects to be a love credit. When you leave them for your loved one to find, you’re building more credit that they can cash in on whenever they miss you. Even as you focus on your conference or your business trip, there’s a piece of you that’s still connected to home.
How do you stay in touch with your family when you business travel?
|This post was written by Karen Que. Karen Que is a lifelong entrepreneur, business woman, wife, and mother who is on a mission to make her family a priority while enjoying immense business success on her own terms. Karen loves to break the mold by helping small business owners create an explosion of growth without losing their sanity. As the Founder and CEO of Q infusion LLC, she works together with small business owners to build their CEO skills, implement systems that create stability, and infuse big business thinking and strategy into their growth plans. To find out more please visitwww.qinfusion.com or be social @qinfusion You can connect with Karen on Twitter and Facebook.|