Business Travel

 2011-08-23

A few weeks ago, guilt reared its ugly head again.  (Coincidentally, it did so today as well...)

The reason: business travel.

As the week started, I was excited and overwhelmed at the same time.  Monday was a vacation day so the Hubby and I could spend a relaxing afternoon at Citizen's Bank Park cheering on the Phillies.  Then, it was off to San Diego for two days for business, back on Thursday to spend a few hours with my boys then off to Dahlgren, VA for a business meeting on Friday morning.  I needed to make sure everything was in line at the house before I left and make sure things were running well at the office during my leave.

I woke up feeling a bit off on Monday and by the evening, it was clear that flying wasn't in my near future...I had the stomach flu.  So, quickly the plans changed - Tuesday was a sick day for me and I ended up working from home on Wednesday.  Luckily, I was traveling with another co-worker to San Diego, so he traveled out for the meeting and I participated via teleconference Wednesday afternoon.  I should have taken Wednesday as a sick day too, but no, I decided to take the time with NO interruptions to catch up on some work, and by the time the teleconference was complete, I had logged a 12 hour day...not necessarily a good idea while you are trying to recuperate.  Guilt #1.

I was back in the office on Thursday, logged another 8 hour day, got my rental car and traveled home to wait out my departure so I wouldn't be bogged down with traffic.  By 7:00, it was time to leave...on a 3 hour journey.

As I was driving, I occupied my time listening to the Gayle King Radio Show on the Oprah Network (yes, I made friends with the lady at Avis...she made sure I had an XM car!) and I started thinking...

I was traveling to Dahlgren for a business meeting.  When the meetings are held in Moorestown, I attend for the opening remarks, and my presentation only - a total of maybe 20 minutes, tops.  Here, I was traveling a total of 8 hours for a 10 minute presentation...3 slides total.  Needless to say, I was frustrated. I was even more frustrated when I arrived at the meeting on Friday morning and saw a live video feed from my home office.

The following week at our staff meeting, our leadership asked for ways to make our meetings more productive, so I decided to share my frustrations with the set up of the meeting.  Bottom line, my frustrations were heard.  Through explaining my frustrations to management, I did realize that this was an opportunity for me to interact with those individuals from my customer set that I don't get to interact with on a daily basis.  Frustrating, but perhaps good for the career.  ;)


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