Heading out for a business trip? For the busy mom who is also a business owner, successful business travel takes a bit of pre-planning and creativity—two things at which you are already an expert! Nobody can replace mom, but thinking through what you need to do before you go, while you are gone, and when you get home can make the experience great for everyone. Below you will find our business travel checklist.
Hey Mom! Before You Travel for Business…
We know you have so much on your plate – that’s why we put together a business travel reminder checklist for your next business trip. Just as you prepare your clients and teammates for when you are going to be away, getting your family ready is just as critical to ensure you have a profitable, meaningful trip.
#1 Inbox + Bills
The first item on the business travel checklist is to clear your inbox and pay bills that are due while you are gone. You want to focus your attention on your work while you are gone and not be distracted by lingering emails, calls, or bills. Take time to get ahead on these and drop a message in your email auto-responder to catch everything while you are gone.
#2 Meals for the Kids
Plan Meals, including stocking up on groceries, meals from Costco, or restaurant gift cards. This is a great way to avoid chaos at home while you are away. Create a meal plan and stock the fridge and pantry. Meals from Costco or ones that can be taken from the freezer to crockpot are super helpful. A restaurant gift card would be a great treat at the end of a long day—what says “I love you” more than a Chick-fil-a milkshake?
#3 Arrange the Sitter
Arrange for a babysitter and school drop off/pickup. Taking care of the kids and getting them to all their activities is second nature to you, but you might need to enlist a small army to cover all the routines. Once you have it worked out, make sure you communicate the plan to the main caregivers, like Dad and Grandmother.
#4 Let Everyone Know
Let friends, family, and neighbors know that you are heading out so that they can check on your family and be available if needed. Just like teammates will support things at work, friends, family, and neighbors can be ready to help with any urgent or emergency situations.
#5 Emergency Contacts
Post emergency contact numbers in a prominent place. Speaking of emergencies, make sure to post all emergency contact numbers from your phone in a place that will be easily accessible to caregivers.
#6 Communicate with the Kids
Talk about the trip with your kids. This might include looking at maps and pictures of the city, your hotel, and any activities you might do while on your business trip. You can also hit up the library for a book about the place you are going or traveling in general. Along the same times, give a specific travel-related toy like a car or a plane. Pictures, books, and toys are great ways to prepare your kids and get them excited about Mom’s trip.
#7 Daily Check-ins
Set up specific times to connect with family while you are gone. Once you have your itinerary, plan times to connect with family via phone, Facetime, or Zoom. You can even add these to your family calendar. It will let kids know what to expect and give them something to look forward to each day that you are gone.
#8 Intentional Activities for the Kids
Leave special notes, treats, or new books for each day. Whether simple or more elaborate, leaving a little something for your kids to open each day can make your time away easier for them. (You can do the same for caregivers, too!)
#9 Come Back to a Clean Home
Hire someone to clean the house before you return. This takes pressure off the family and allows you to come home to a clean, tidy house!
#10 Just Before You Leave
If possible, plan to leave after breakfast or school drop off to spend some time together before your big trip. Then, say good-bye and leave happy! Even if you are sad about leaving the family, you don’t want them—especially toddlers and preschoolers—to think there is something wrong. Reassure them that you will be back soon!
While You’re Away
You have a great plan in place to make sure everybody at home has what they need while you are gone so you can focus on the purpose of your trip. We’ve given you the business travel checklist above.
Here are 5 more tips to stay connected and make the transition back home easier . . .
- Keep your facetime/phone dates with your family.
- Send pictures that show the places you’re working and the people you are meeting.
- For your kids, take some of their favorite books to read aloud when you talk with them.
- Use your time away to focus on business and, if possible, try to get some good rest when the work day is done. This way you won’t arrive home completely exhausted.
- Buy some presents for your family!
Home, Sweet Home
As your business trip comes to an end, your mind will begin to turn back to home and family. When you arrive home, stow your bags, unpack later, and give your family some attention. Hear about their day and hand out those awesome presents you picked up. (Don’t forget to admire the clean house.)
Before you jump back into work, try to build in some margins of time so you can have a special outing with your kids and give the caretaker a break.
Dismiss the Mom-Guilt
No doubt you will miss your family while you are gone, but, if you’ve decided this trip is important enough to take, you can dismiss any guilt you feel about going! Investing in your work is a good thing, especially if it helps you to level up and grow professionally.
(If you haven’t already registered, we have a great opportunity for business travel coming up in Nashville, TN. Join us for our Passive Income Mastermind to learn about how to add income streams to your existing business. Click here for more details.)
Bon Voyage, Mom! Have a great trip!