When it comes to business travel, the stakes are usually high. Whether you are attending an industry conference, meeting with clients, or scoping out a new market, opportunity is at your fingertips.
Your conduct and the decisions you make will ultimately determine whether a business trip is successful and all of that starts with the awareness of certain do’s and don’ts regarding professional etiquette. Check out these four essential tips on business trip etiquette to ensure that your next business trip is the best it can be.
Business Trip Etiquette Tip #1: Your appearance matters – and there are no excuses for that wrinkled shirt.
You should always dress to impress when on the job whether you’re in your regular workplace or out of town. This is especially the case if you know you’re going to be making a first impression on a new client or colleague. The way you look dictates how others perceive you, so take any competitive edge you can get.
Here’s the thing about traveling that’s important to keep in mind: Nobody’s clothes make it from A to B without accumulating some wrinkles – even for expert packers. It may sound silly, but it’s important to actually schedule a chunk of time to iron your clothes. Get all of your ironing out of the way on Day 1 so you don’t have to think about it for the rest of the trip. (Alternatively, if you’re willing to spend the cash, find out if your hotel offers pressing services. Just be careful to take note of turnaround times).
Business Trip Etiquette Tip #2: Don’t be late – even a little.
Tardiness is poor professional etiquette in any situation, but when you’re on a business trip, you should go above and beyond to be on time to meetings and events. Again, first impressions are key. Lateness sends the wrong message – and it can be a lasting one.
Plan your schedule carefully and be sure to allocate enough time to get from one point to the next. Keep an eye on the clock to ensure that unanticipated conversations don’t flow into time where you’re expected elsewhere.
Business Trip Etiquette Tip #3: Watch out for the slippery slope.
The great thing about business trips is that they present the opportunity to spend time with co-workers outside of the regular working hours. This makes for a second-to-none team bonding experience.
That said, be wary of letting happy hour turn into an unhappy tomorrow. Always use your best judgement. Don’t be afraid to call it a night if you sense that professional lines are getting too blurry. No single evening is worth sabotaging your career.
Business Trip Etiquette Tip #4: There’s a time and a place for your phone, tablet, and laptop.
You may be an incredibly talented multitasker, but all that matters in a social setting is that others perceive you to be fully present and engaged. Do your best to make calls, send texts, or respond to emails during designated working sessions or alone time. Show respect and a genuine interest in others by keeping your phone in your pocket or purse, particularly during meals.
When taking notes during a conference or meeting, the old school method of pen and paper is still your best bet. You don’t want others to misconstrue diligent note-taking for texting or updating your Facebook status.
Remember, as with all opportunities, business trips are what you make of them. The next time you get to travel for work, make the most of it by planning, maintaining professionalism, paying attention to social cues and keeping your professional etiquette top of mind.
We are Cydcor, the recognized leader in outsourced sales and marketing services located in Agoura Hills, California. From our humble beginnings as an independent sales company to garnering a reputation for consistently exceeding client expectations and driving outstanding revenue growth, Cydcor has been helping Fortune 500 and emerging companies achieve their customer acquisition, retention, and business goals since 1994. Cydcor takes pride in the unique combination of in-person sales, call center, and digital marketing services we offer to provide our clients with proven sales and marketing strategies that get results.