Photo: sackerman via Flickr
travelling for business, especially abroad, doesn’t come naturally to a lot of people. It’s a learned skill, according to Laurie Ruettimann, a human resources consultant and blogger for The Cynical Girl.”I’ve traveled with my boss several times, and it’s a great opportunity to put your best foot forward,” she said. “But if you decide to go out partying, and wake up tired, a new side of you comes out.”
Ruettimann broke down the things an employee can do while travelling with his boss that are guaranteed to make him look like a complete amateur.
Ruettimann urged staying dry on the flight.
Otherwise, 'it makes you look like an amateur,' she said.
'I was once on a 12-hour flight from Raleigh to London, and two salesmen were on the flight. The younger one ordered two mini vodkas instantly. The boss turned to me and said, 'Oh, he's just young.' That's bad. You want to put your best foot forward.'
If you have trouble sleeping on planes, and really need to because it's a long flight, try Dramamine, Ruettimann suggested.
If you're travelling for less than a week, the general rule of thumb is to carry on your luggage, according to Ruettimann. Especially for men.
'You don't want to be the one making your boss wait at luggage claim, and then your bag gets lost and everything is a mess,' Ruettimann said.
'Bringing KFC on the plane will stink up the entire cabin,' Ruettimann said. 'And again, it will make you look like an amateur and a slob, who is selfish and only concerned with fueling yourself with bad food.'
Make sure to check out the airport's website before leaving home. Know where your gate will be when you land (if possible), what direction the taxi stand is in, etc.
'You want to have your wits about you upon landing,' Ruettimann said. 'Being on a business trip, you want to make sure you're always cool and confident.'
Many cities outside of New York do not accept credit cards in taxi cabs. Don't embarrass yourself by putting yourself in a position where you have to borrow money from your boss.
'Even though the most senior person on the trip generally pays for everything, you want to make sure you're covered,' Ruettimann said. 'I generally like to bring $100 in cash with me on business trips just in case.'
Most people in a position of power know how to remain silent and listen, Ruettimann said.
If you're in the taxi on the way to the hotel, feel free to sit in silence and not make painful, forced small talk. Neither of you want to talk about business yet, anyway.
'If you can be quiet, it shows you have poise,' Ruettimann said.
This includes gambling, going to a strip club, and most likely being in a bikini.
'You don't want to make your boss feel like you're missing something in your personal life that you have to go out and fulfil it on a business trip,' said Ruettimann. 'You also don't want to disclose a side of you that you later wish your boss did not see.'
There will always be a time on a business trip that you need to drink for business purposes. But always stay at least one drink behind your boss.
When you both order your first, sip slow. When he orders his second drink, tell the waiter you're not quiet ready yet.
The internet is your best friend. Google what the customs are for dinner and other social situations in the country to which you're travelling.
It's also a good idea to research tipping customs in each country you visit.
Allergic to peanuts? Imagine to horror if you go into anaphylactic shock in front of your boss and your foreign clients because you ate something called 'Kung Pao,' and didn't know what was in it.
If you have food allergies, always check out the menu before hand and alert your boss and the clients you're with. Also carry an EpiPen and tell your boss you have it.
'It's far less embarrassing to tell your boss you carry an EpiPen, then going into anaphylactic shock at dinner,' Ruettimann said.
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