The Eagle Blog

A Business Travel Update

Its been a little while since I blogged about Business Travel … although I have done so a few times now. The first time was in May 2006 when I was off to a conference in Vancouver. I talked a little about the realities of business travel as opposed to the “glamorous” perspective I had before it was me doing it!

I wrote about Business Travel again in April 2007 … funny how it is always the trips to Western Canada that prompt these blogs! This time I was talking a little about the impact of time zones, the long days but also the positive aspects of getting to spend time face to face with colleagues across the country.

I must have been feeling a little sorry for myself in July last year when I blogged about the amount of travel was doing, coupled with tight schedules I had “red eye” flights in there and everything.

Today I am back “out West” spending the day in Calgary and will have a little social time with the team in addition to meeting with some clients. Tomorrow I’ll zip to Edmonton for the day and again spend some time with the team and clients, Wednesday will be back in Calgary.

Last week I drove to Montreal on Wednesday to attend the annual ACSESS conference … about which I will need to blog also soon! One of the guest speakers at that conference was Don Bell, one of the founders of Westjet … of course I flew Westjet to Calgary today and they will take me back to Ottawa on Wednesday evening. Don was a fascinating speaker and gave some great insights into why Westjet has been such a success story in an industry plagued with failures … and a big part of that is a fun corporate culture.

So … has anything changed about business travel?

Not really …
it is not glamorous,
it is stressful,
it makes for long days,
it brings hassles,
it is hard on the body,
it messes with exercise routines,
it increases dry cleaning costs.

It IS necessary … you cannot replace the value of face to face meetings. You can certainly supplement them with conference calls etc, but sometimes you just have to travel. It is great to get out and meet clients and hear first hand their challenges, the passion they have for their business and get a chance to thank them for their business.

Take a read of those earlier blogs about business travel, understand what it will mean to you but also understand that thee is a price to everything and if getting on a plane means better client relationships and happier employees I’m in!

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