Business Traveller Wellbeing – Finding The Confidence To Travel Again
With the news that the USA will be opening its borders to UK travellers, combined with the UK government traffic light system being more or less abandoned, life is starting to feel more familiar. A return to normal business practices is in the air. It is becoming more important to help your employees find the confidence to travel again.
But what if your people seem hesitant and unsure? are they making every excuse possible to stay firmly rooted in their home country? What can you do as their employer and manager to help build their confidence? Get them back on the road, in the air and away from digital meetings?
Update your company travel policy
You can ensure a policy genuinely reflects your duty of care responsibilities to your people. Make sure it is built around their safety, hygiene and wellbeing in the post-pandemic world. Take time to communicate and explain the thinking behind it.
Have open and honest conversations
Arrange a time to have unhurried meetings that allow you to explore how individuals are feeling and what their concerns and hesitations are. Ask how the business can help best and support. Gently remind people of the benefits of face to face meetings. This can include the relationships that can be developed in that kind of environment, the sales that are more likely to be won and the sheer pleasure of simply being around people again.
What’s best for your people?
After listening to their ideas for helping them feel more at ease on the move, can you include these in your travel policy? Upgrade the premium class travel? Time to recover and recoup from jetlag? Need serviced accommodations that provide them autonomy and a better sense of home and familiarity?
A phased approach
Rather than going full hilt and back to the volume of pre-Covid travel, consider a gradual ramp-up. Maybe only one trip a month instead of the previous usual two or three. This allows time for individuals to mentally prepare for the trip and recoup afterwards.
Knowledge is King
Reliable facts and information are essential to building confidence and trust in your travellers. However, be mindful of overloading, and avoid the “send to all” approach. This is the time for sensitive and timely communication that is relevant to each traveller and the destination they are visiting. Post and pre-trip briefings are a great idea. A way of checking in before departure to ensure all is in order, followed by a debrief on return. Everyone can understand what went well and what were the learnings that could be shared with others.
Implement traveller tracking and emergency support
A no brainer really, and you have probably already done this as part of your revised travel policy. This is very comforting for those nervous travellers to know that you will always know their location and can provide support in the event of an emergency.
Door to door support
Join all the dots up for your travellers, from the moment they step out their front door to commence their travel until the moment they cross the threshold on their return. This is not just helpful and reassuring for your traveller – but the family they may be leaving behind. By the dots – we mean travel to the point of departure, transport, transfers, accommodation and if it’s an unfamiliar overseas location any pointers, guidance or advice for local customs, Covid guidelines etc.
Whilst there is wide recognition of the impact the past eighteen months has had on so many people, it is those organisations that fully recognise this and take time to plan, empathise and support their people back to required levels of travel that will win the day. In doing so, they will steer themselves back to full commercial success.
A step in instilling the confidence back in employees can be assuring them that the accommodation they are staying in is of the highest standard. SITU can help with this. You and your employees can rest easy knowing that each of our suppliers is processed through a vetting process. To learn more about the serviced apartments we over all over the globe, visit the SITU website!