Travelling for business has witnessed a tremendous rise in the last couple of years and global entrepreneurs of tomorrow are not shying away from the prospects of travelling to new lands to expand their scope for new and better opportunities.
The conventional ways of running a business have given way to more sophisticated and technology-oriented practices that make it possible for the modern entrepreneur to connect with his associates and stay abreast of the day-to-day business operations.
It isn’t easy, however, to stay in touch with office affairs when you’re travelling. Between the running around to catch flights and eating in-flight meals, it is possible to miss out on sending or responding to important messages and fixing up meetings.
Business travelling is a skill, in terms of staying connected with existing and prospective clients, office staff, and family members. Honing these skills can be a challenge especially because our clients and staff expect a quick response to all their queries even when we’re travelling. Any delay in providing them with the answers could result in the loss of time, money and business opportunities. Don’t let your business suffer back home while you travel far and wide to grow it. Adopt technology instead!
Mobile technology is the ideal solution and is being lapped up by most commercial establishments, big or small.
Here’s the lowdown on the 3 time-tested online tools which can work for your business as well.
Almost everyone is familiar with Skype and its various functions and probably already use it to conduct their day-to-day international as well as domestic business communication. But for those who’re still oblivious to this age-old program, here’s what you need to know about it.
Skype has been around for quite a while now and has gained immense popularity over the last few years, thanks to its easy usability and versatile features. Simply download the program, register yourself and start using its basic services for free over your Internet connection. You can pay a nominal fee to unlock more of its functions like making domestic landline and international calls.
The ability to talk face-to-face with someone enhances the quality and the output of the communication process, thereby making your presence felt in the office even though you may be far away.
Although computers are extremely helpful and highly efficient machines, they aren’t perfect. Systems break down or get hacked into, but the smart business traveler is well-prepared to tackle such scenarios by regularly uploading important files to the cloud. Not only does doing so help keep them secure, they can also be accessed from any location.
Use Dropbox to store your data and access it from anywhere via a computer, a smartphone or a tablet. Thanks to this online service, you don’t need to transfer files to your laptop every time you have to travel. Simply log into Dropbox and access them wherever you go.
#3. Google Drive
If you have a Google account, you may want to start exploring Google Drive, which is a Web-based document management service. This system gives other Google account holders of your choice the permission to access your files.
It makes doing business when travelling extremely convenient as multiple users can have the same file open at once on their respective computers, and each one can add their tidbits and make necessary modifications.
What’s more? All the users can see where your cursor is moving which enables them to coordinate better with you. When supported with Google Hangouts, using this service will make you forget that you’re away from your office.
Why You Should Stay Connected When on the Move
- Staying connected with your team at all times will enable you to check with them frequently about the issues they may be facing in your absence. You can also keep your colleagues updated about your whereabouts.
- Certain important situations may require you to consult with your team before coming to a decision. Collaborating with them becomes much easier when you’re connected well.
- Using the above-mentioned tools will enable you to be accessible to your staff whenever they need your guidance. Make yourself available using them either throughout the day or for certain pre-decided hours during the day so that your team doesn’t feel estranged.
At the Same Time
If you get the chance, try and divide your travelling with colleagues so that they can also benefit from the experience. Not only will this allow you to be in office, but also encourage a culture of sharing and collaborating, which will better the atmosphere in the office.
Learn to trust your teammates and avoid micromanaging every aspect when away from the office. At the maximum, check with them at regular intervals for all the updates you need. This will make your staff feel trusted and accountable. Give them the freedom to carry on with their tasks as usual.
It makes sense not to skimp pennies when trying to stay connected on the go. You need to take your business activities seriously and communication is one of them. In order to stay on top of things, you will need to be updated on all fronts. One wrong piece of information can lead to breach of trust and you may end up losing clients, which can be costlier than saving up through cutting costs on staying connected.
Moving out of office and still managing your business affairs has become quite stress-free thanks to mobile technology. All you need to do is choose the right application(s) depending on the nature of your business and manage your operations with ease.
It is important that you stay as involved with your teammates in handling the day-to-day business collaborations as possible. With a little advance planning and some help from the above-mentioned applications, you should be able to stay in control of your business affairs, even when away from it.
Images: ”Elegant young businessman using his PC tablet while walking/ Shutterstock.com“
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