Note: This article was filed by a paid contributor to Xerox Corporation.
Business travel can really throw your schedule out of whack—and put a dent in your productivity. But to get the most from your trip, you need to get things done despite the long hours, lumpy hotel beds and cramped airline seats. Here are eight things you can do to be more productive on a business trip.
- Get your documents in order. Carrying sensitive data on a laptop, smartphone or tablet could cause major problems if your device is stolen or lost on your trip. Remove unnecessary files from your laptop, tablet and smartphone to prevent security breaches. Then, digitize any print documents you’ll need on the road by scanning them to the cloud using Xerox Web Capture—it works with any brand of scanner.
Cloud storage and collaboration tools such as Google Drive, Dropbox, Box, OneDrive and Office 365 let you and your team securely access your digitized business data from anywhere.
What if you forget a crucial print document back at the office? No worries. Have someone at your office scan it with a Xerox multifunction printer (MFP) enabled with ConnectKey technology, and they can send it securely to your phone, tablet or email. Or, log on to your network, then use any ConnectKey-enabled printer or MFP to access and print the documents you need.
- Arm yourself to get work done. Create a checklist of essential technology for mobile productivity, such as your laptop, tablet and smartphone, plus any accessories or peripherals you need. For instance, if you’ll be dealing with lots of paper, you may want to bring a mobile scanner. Don’t forget cables, chargers, batteries and the other extras your devices rely on. If you travel frequently, it’s worth getting a spare of each item to keep in your luggage.
- Power up. Charge all your electronics fully before you leave; you’ll eliminate worry about being able to find an outlet at the airport. Once you’re on the road, take advantage of opportunities to charge your devices when they arise — that way, you won’t get caught short at a big meeting with a dead laptop. Better yet, bring a portable charger with you (just make sure to charge it before you head out in the morning).
- Choose the right hotel. Make sure your hotel has all the business amenities you’ll need. For instance, is there free Wi-Fi? Sufficient workspace in the guestrooms? A business center you can use? Staying at the same hotel chain whenever possible not only helps you accumulate rewards points, but also simplifies your life since you’ll always know what to expect. Plus, you’ll typically get checked in faster and enjoy other perks that help you be more productive.
- Use flight time wisely. Most flights now provide in-flight Wi-Fi, but even if you have the option to go online, is that the best use of those hours of uninterrupted time? You may be get more done by working on focused, off-line tasks such as reading business books or writing a proposal. Waiting for your flight? Use the time for quick, low-intensity tasks like reading your email and checking in with the office.
- Handle paperwork on the road. The worst part of business travel comes after the trip—when you’re jet-lagged and have to sort through the pile of receipts, contracts, business cards and other paper you collected on the road. Eliminate that headache by using the Xerox® Mobile Link App to scan, fax and store contracts, purchase orders, expense receipts, business cards and other documents while you’re on your trip.
Or, go one step further to get organized with Xerox Web Capture. Instead of manually scanning documents, creating files, organizing them in folders, and importing them to an app like Microsoft Office 365, QuickBooks or Salesforce, use Xerox Web Capture to scan documents and import them directly into your apps. It works with any brand of scanner.
- Be prepared to print. From presentations to contracts and more, last-minute printing jobs are often part of business travel. With the Xerox Mobile Print Solution, you’re ready to handle them. It uses GPS to locate printers in public print networks, then securely prints to them.
- Take good care of yourself. Tight schedules, unfamiliar surroundings and the stress of travel can add up to exhaustion if you aren’t careful. Try to keep to a regular sleep schedule and eat healthy foods. Set aside time every day to unwind and recharge whether that’s a dip in the hotel pool, a massage at the spot or a brisk run around the neighborhood.
As a frequent business traveler, I rely on mobile apps to get things done. If you’re looking for the best mobile apps for entrepreneurs, then check out this list that I put together.
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