Business trips can make or break a big deal, or even your career. Here are some pointers for how to kill it on your next one.
Many people travel all over the world on business trips but not everyone hits a home run while on these trips.
There is nothing more satisfying than going on a long business trip and closing deal after deal or re-signing numerous clients to long-term deals.
While there is a bit of luck associated with deals being closed, there is also preparation.
Many people believe luck is when opportunity meets preparation and many sales professionals would rather be lucky than good.
The following are some things that will help you kill it on your next business trip.
Related Article: Business Travel Accessories Every Road Warrior Needs
Set an Agenda
If multiple clients or potential clients are in the same city it is likely that there will be multiple meetings.
Set goals and an agenda for what is the ideal outcome of the meetings or pitches. This will help hold you accountable for what you actually accomplished.
Far too often one successful meeting out of five may have you feeling like the trip went as well as possible.
Set lofty goals that if hit on trip after trip could impact a career positively for years.
Being the go-to person for business trips because you are great at closing and entertaining clients is one of the best ways to climb the corporate ladder via promotion.
Work While Traveling
The excuse that you were traveling so you couldn’t get back to a client doesn’t fly anymore. With the ease of technology there is no excuse to be getting behind on work.
While a boss might not reprimand you for falling behind while traveling, they will be impressed if there is no change in production while having a successful business trip.
There will be some things that are absolutely necessary, like maintaining any existing accounts, because losing a few customers to gain one is not worth it.
Stay on top of your workload. Customer service and promptness in responding is not lost on many because some companies do not put the client or customer first.
Nail The Presentation or Pitch
If there is some type of pitch or presentation that has to be done, do not wing this.
There could be a sale with a huge account or a renewal that keeps a company afloat. Obviously if they are former clients, a great salesperson will know what the client wants and how to convey that to them.
There are other types of trips that just maintain relationships, but giving a presentation on current jobs or campaigns is important just as is a client dinner or happy hour get-together.
Getting tips from people who have worked on these accounts in the past, whether it is the customer service rep or account manager that has contact with them, is imperative.
Do Research on Clients or Potential Clients
Doing research on your clients is absolutely necessary. These could be things like their interests or even something as simple as where they went to college.
If you're lucky enough, they could be interested in the same thing. Building this rapport makes someone look at a salesperson or founder of a business as a person rather than someone working to get a sale.
Rapport should be made before the business trip, but referencing past conversations or meetings at conferences is another great strategy.
Do Not, for Any Reason, Let Your Phone Die
A client could be running late but, without a phone, an alternate meeting time cannot be made.
On the other hand, letting a phone run out of battery life could cause you to miss calls with other clients or not respond to time-sensitive emails.
If you conduct business constantly on your phone you should either bring a separate phone as a back up, just to be safe.
The other option is finding a way to save battery on a smartphone to make sure all important calls and emails can be answered promptly.
As a founder of a company it is possible that important decisions can be made while on the road, ignoring these calls or messages from employees could cause disaster.
Being the person that management calls on to go on the big business trips is a fast track to upper management, so take advantage of the opportunity.
Keep closing deals and building relationships with clients to make yourself indispensable to the company.
Good luck and follow some of these tips on the next company business trip.