I enjoy welcoming them and talking with them as they are a very international group of individuals with a wealth of cultural diversity. I am often honoured by them telling me their personal stories. I find myself doing a pseudo PhD in the Psychology of the Business Traveller, so I thought I'd share with you some of my musings to see if you can add your insights, which I'd be grateful to hear.
Why don't you email me, or comment below? The main theme is the diminished sense of self, across the board, at any level in the corporation or small business. I have made it my mission to understand this, and to see if we can start a movement to give them better options which might make business travel a more pleasurable and even enjoyable experience.
- A number
- Informed about local community places spaces and events, especially for the long stayers
Alongside that I try to listen to them about how much help and assistance they might want. I ask them about when they may want that help - often they are tired when they first arrive. I try to put myself in their shoes because I worked for IBM for 10 years and certainly did my fair share of flying around, checking-in, checking-out and at best having a chat with the concierge about his kids whilst someone else put mine to bed at the other end of Europe. I suppose in essence, I am trying to be a mind reader.
Don't get me wrong, this is such an alien approach to the veteran business traveller that sometimes I get the distinct feeling that they are happy being a number, invisible, off the grid - and in that case I will leave them alone with their super-fast WiFi, to enjoy FaceTime with their friends back home and catching up on their Netflix wishlist, with details of how to access local knowledge and assistance should they change their mind.
- Plugged in
Too many of the places where our global and national business travellers are staying/living do not give them a chance to explore a place which, had they been there with their families, they would have called a holiday destination.
These people are effectively living in a city for long periods of time despite the fact that they may either pop back home for a couple of days every few weeks or have their families join them periodically. I feel that it is our duty as business travel hosts to help them to feel free, unburdened and open to the cultural experience.
In essence we, as hosts, should be able to equip them to explore in their downtime, to be brave, adventurous and spontaneous in a way which would make the whole experience richer for them. This has a positive and refreshing knock-on effect on the business that they are working with or for, and to the wider perception of business travel.
Let's aim for exciting, connected and enriching business travel, dehumanising is just not good enough, it's lazy of the industry. Nook & Cranny plan to be the vanguard of positive change. We would welcome you along for the ride.