Although many of us get caught up in the “glamorous” side of business travel – room service, limousine transfers and plush hotels – there’s a less pleasant side-effect of travel which often goes ignored.
That’s right - jet lag. You’ve been preparing for a conference for months, but between preparing your slide deck and ordering extra business cards, you forgot all about the impact travelling across several time zones can have on your body.
At one point in your corporate career, you’ll be faced with the infamous red eye extravaganza: catch the first flight of the day, to a meeting at 9 am, lunch with investors, followed by an afternoon meeting, and right back on the plane home. Even the seasoned traveller dreads this trip: the time slots are tight, and with one small error the entire trip is ruined. With the demand in efficiency increasing by the minute, it’s important to remain calm and in control when travelling for business, even in the moments when things seem to fall apart. Not to worry! EAS has you covered from start to finish, no matter how tight the schedule.
With great power comes great responsibility, so it’s easy to say it’s bitter sweet building a relationship with your boss. As the promotions come and the salaries increase, the tasks become more high stress with more at stake. Your boss will delegate important tasks to those closest to them, and so naturally, the time will come when you will be asked to book your employer’s business trip.
Although this task may seem daunting, fear not! With our easy to follow, step by step guide, EAS makes planning your boss’s business travel experience a cinch.
In today’s hyper connected digital world our lives, both personal and business run based on a steady flow of information. In fact so much of our lives is digitised – our social interactions with friends and family, holiday snaps transmitted around the world in an instant and payment for our daily caffeine fix are just a few examples. As a result the digital devices we wear or carry round with us have become an absolute necessity, especially for business.
However, we have become so dependent on our connection to people and information; technology can be both a blessing and a burden.
Avoiding long airport queues, defeating jet lag and dealing with bad weather are all second nature to seasoned business travellers.
In the majority of cases, business travel will go off without a hitch. It’s an excellent opportunity to visit new places, make new contacts, get to know remote colleagues in person and learn new things.
But what should you do when things go wrong?
Here are ten lessons that a trade fair newbie took away from the World Property Market that's held on the French Riviera:
- Pack a sweater
“Cannes” may carry connotations of scorching sun and vitamin D, but this year it was foolish to second guess the weather. The sun may have broken out while I was meeting contacts in the windowless bunker. But overall, the [weather] felt closer to Margate than Marseille.
2. Catch the train again
I heard at least 20 people moan about fog at London City Airport. Another 10 complained about traffic on the last stretch to Cannes. Hop on a Eurostar, then a TGV, and you have none of this bother. Plus, you can grab your first glass of French red during the stopover in Paris.
3. Over-promise at your peril
One property veteran told me to book only 40% of my MIPIM time as meetings. He was right, because tearing around the Croisette between hourly diary slots is no fun. So next year, more of my time will be spent bumping into familiar faces, having impromptu wine-tastings, and loitering around the London stand with a notebook and a business card.
4. Tweet clearly
When Coventry City Council brings together private sector partners to fund a two-Michelin-starred inward investment dinner on the outskirts of Cannes, don’t send a Tweet saying: “I’m off to a Michelin** restaurant, courtesy of Coventry.” More than one charitable organisation got the wrong end of the cinnamon stick.
5. Stay central
If you have the option to get a city-centre hotel, take it. Standing at the taxi rank for 40 minutes each night to get to my hotel, 20 minutes away, was far from pleasant.
6. Canapés rarely satisfy
Lamb and red pepper skewers may sound hearty enough, but eating 10 of these miniature kebabs does not constitute a dinner or a lunch, especially when accompanied by the same number of beers.
7. Pre-iron your shirts
Not only was my hotel miles out of town, it only possessed 20 irons to service 500 apartments, so probably 2,000 shirts in total. Needless to say, with a property conference going on down the road, there weren’t enough irons to go around. On the upside, I now know that the French for an “where is the iron?” is “où est le fer?”.
8. Don’t be gullible
Rumours abound at MIPIM, and most must be taken with a heavy pinch of salt. I heard last week that 140 people were in custody in the Tchenguiz arrests, that MEPC was being bought, and that the Homes and Communities Agency had begun a firesale of its London assets. All these were unfounded.
9. Hold the front page!
MIPIM, I have learned, is a place where the unexpected happens. If a property man was having a heart attack at the Martinez one day, another property man was finding a dead body at the beach on the next. And who could have predicted that the Tchenguiz brothers would be arrested on the Wednesday morning, a day before their legendary yacht party?
10. Stay up to date at PropertyWeek.com
I was standing on the Cushman & Wakefield beach trying to persuade a naysayer just how useful the website, PropertyWeek.com, can be.
Rely on EAS for the best in quality accommodations, exclusive venues, event and marketing management, and other special concierge services. For further information, get in touch.
Destination Management Companies – DMCs (not to be confused with Run DMC, the American hip hop group!) – are the intermediary business travel service providers that arrange accommodation and events abroad.
DMCs take care of every aspect of business travel, from organising airport transfers and accommodation to coordinating events. Their unrivalled local city knowledge and supplier relationships take the burden off you and your employees – saving you both time and money.