Considering that more than half of all business travelers are women, and today, September 19, 2018, is National Woman Road Warrior Day, I decided to dedicate this month to all you “gals on the go”. I hope you’ll take a few minutes to celebrate Women Road Warriors with me, while learning how to prepare for your business trips more easily.
Whether you travel once in a blue moon or are always on the road, the preparation is virtually the same. Gals on the go still have hundreds of things to get ready and thousands of tiny details to attend to. We go skidding out on a trip and then we come skidding back in. We’re so busy. We spend so much time, energy, and effort with the back and forth, having any real organization is often where we drop the ball. While many travelers think that organization is important, road warriors live by it.
Women have additional stresses when it comes to travel. They have a whole world to balance. They have all the things they need to get ready for their trip and they have to prepare for those they leave behind. For the trip they have presentations to give, work to get done while traveling and snacks to keep their energy up. There is even more pressure to maintain the Professional Edge . On the home front, they have meals to plan, school functions to cover and kids to be shuttled. I even have my dog Sydney to be fed, watered and walked. All this planning and preparing takes superior organization skills.
When I think organization, the first person that pops into my mind is Beth Gibson Lilja of BGL & Associates, Professional Organizers. A lifelong organizer, Beth started BGL in 2003. Since then she has been helping people expertly organize their businesses, their photos, and their lives. A road warrior herself, Beth speaks to this topic both personally and professionally. During our interview I asked Beth to give us her most valuable tricks to manage the double lives women on the go have.
Checks and Balances
Beth is a huge supporter of lists. “I have a list of everything that needs to be done at home, getting packed, and then while on the road. In my experience, the prime thing that I help my client’s with is creating checklists for managing the different areas of their life. Not only do I have checklists for me, I leave them for the folks at home too. This allows me to maintain order and remain balanced both when I’m home and while I’m away.”
Systems of Success
“Using systems are vital to anyone in business, especially a woman road warrior”, Beth advises. “One of the systems I recommend is called Task List. It’s in the Microsoft Office platform. From the checklist, items are then entered onto the task lists. The biggest challenge people face is getting things detailed enough so that they don’t have to remember what things have to be done.”
Home Sweet Home
Another challenge that few people actually think about is when women road warriors come home. They have to hit the ground running with family, home and regular work. They’ve just spent so much energy on their trip but there is probably little or no time for rest. And they now have to unpack, follow up with people they met and complete the work from the trip. Beth recommends, “Have checklists for your arrival at home as well. If you have good systems in place you’ll be able to fully utilize my next tip….”
“One of the things that I like to have people remember is an acronym. It’s called OHIO, which stands for only handle it once. I strive to use OHIO in every aspect of my life. I only handle business cards once by putting them directly into the CRM as soon as I get back. I write my Thank You cards and get them out immediately.” Beth adds, “These are all on my checklists.”
Beth is right about checklists, systems and definitely OHIO. I firmly believe that having all these in place is the best way to free up your mind. Without them, thoughts would be running through your mind make it virtually impossible to remember anything. It becomes very hard to focus without having those checklists prepared and ready to use. I say why waste all that brain power on remembering those tiny details, get it on a list, and free up your mind to up-level your business or career.
For more information about succeeding as a business traveler watch Spot-On™ with Regina Barr’s show on Women Road Warriors – Keeping it all Together While Traveling (Link to the show)
- Posted by Regina
- On September 19, 2018
- 0 Comments