Amanda Fisher fuses accounting and technology to help improve business. Amanda’s mission in life is…
How to Mix Holidays With Business and Enjoy Both
I have always wanted to have the type of business that allows me to be anywhere in the world and still keep my business going whilst at the same time travelling around. I recently spent five weeks in Canada taking my 90 year-old parents on a trip back to an area we’d lived in for a couple of years when I was a teenager. My challenge was that I needed to keep doing client work at the same time.
Over the years, I have developed the ability to be present in every moment. What that has meant is no matter what I’m doing I am totally focused on that. It has worked well in my day to day business and I have found it worked too whilst I am travelling. I would enjoy every moment of the days’ travelling without a thought at all about business and then in the evenings, I would be focused on business and not think at all about the travelling, what I’d seen and done or what I was about to see and do.
My tips for making a holiday work whilst still doing some work are:
- Make it known to all members of the travelling group that you will be doing some work along the way.
- Identify when the best time will be for you to do the work and make sure that everyone knows that’s your work time.
- Be present at all times no matter what you’re doing. If you’re holidaying then enjoy the holiday, if you’re in work time, enjoy the work, but never never never mix up the two.
- If you find your mind wandering to work whilst in holiday time, make a conscious effort to switch it off. Tell yourself that you can deal with the work when you’re next doing work time and it will be ok to deal with it then.
- Use technology for meetings whether you’re in your office or travelling, that way your clients will be used to skype calls, gotomeetings or zoom meetings and won’t think any differently from one meeting to the next.
- Consider whether you will tell your clients that you are travelling or not. I’ve told clients that I’m travelling in the past and had them defer meetings and put off contacting me because they want me to have the holiday which is great, but not the point. In recent travels, I’ve not told clients and continued to have my online meetings as though I was back at home. Most don’t even know I’m not in Australia.
- Establish a voip phone number, that’s a fancy name for a phone that works over the internet. Then divert your mobile phone to the voip number which has message bank. That way you get all the phone calls and can easily return them.
- I take a back-up international data sim just in case the wifi in a hotel is not quite up to scratch. It has come in handy when I’ve been in remote locations, but hasn’t been necessary when I’ve been in major cities.
- If you’re using Gmail, set up Boomerang which allows you to set the time for when you send out emails, that way you can send them during normal business hours and the recipients won’t know that you’re doing the work at some strange hour which means they’ll realise that you’re overseas somewhere.
- Give yourself permission to work just three to four hours a day. This takes the pressure off having to do a full days’ work and at the same time what it means is that you do the most important work and don’t worry about the other less important tasks that don’t have to be done at the time.
The key to it all is to make the decision that your trip is a combined holiday with business. If you want to go on a pure holiday, you need to make other arrangements so that you don’t get interrupted with business commitments. For me, having the type of business that allows me to keep working wherever I am in the world is what allows me to have the benefit of travelling to interesting places in the world whilst still maintaining my business. Next time you’re taking a holiday, consider whether you will combine it with work and use my tips to make it an enjoyable experience for everyone.
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