Going on frequent business trips can be difficult, not just for you, but also for your family. Being away on a business trip means missing valuable time with the kids. It can also put a strain on your relationship and not all relationships are capable of withstanding the stress of a long-distance relationship or LDR.
Fortunately, being away frequently doesn’t mean you cannot balance work and family. There are still things you can do to make sure that the business trips you take don’t get in the way of spending quality time with the family. We are going to review some of those ways in this article.
Having a clear communication strategy is a must when you travel for business a lot. This guide on surviving a long distance relationship shows how important it is to communicate well when you are apart. Communicating with family may seem easy, but there are still challenges you need to overcome along the way.
For starters, you want to use a communication method that works for everyone. Video call is ideal, but there is no point in making frequent video calls if your family at home cannot see you clearly due to a bad internet connection.
You also need to manage your time well. Define the portion of your day you allocate for your family and separate that portion from the one allocated for work. It is even better if you can allocate the same time every day for communicating with your family. This will create a pattern that everyone can follow easily.
Focus on Quality
The tempting thing to do is call home frequently in an attempt to achieve that work-life balance. This approach is not going to work. Spending more time calling home or being in a video call with your loved ones is not going to change the fact that you are away.
Rather than using quantity, invest more in quality. When you do call home, use the time to exchange stories and do things together. Ask about what the children have been up to and listen to their responses. Invest your time and attention so that communication becomes more meaningful.
You can consider doing some things together too. At the end of the day, stream the same movie on Netflix and watch it while staying on the phone with your partner back home. Another great thing to try is reading bedtime stories over the phone or video call as a way to be with the kids in the evening.
Work on Your Schedules
Good communication helps fill the gaps, but that doesn’t mean you can be away all the time. Business trips tend to have flexible schedules, so now is the time to look into those schedules and find ways to make time for the family.
There is always a way. Rather than going back and forth to visit multiple clients, for instance, you can turn several business trips into a series of stops. This simple change can help you save a few days; it can help you gain a few days to spend with the family.
You also have to be strict with your time management. For example, you can choose not to travel for business on weekends. It is okay to work towards having a more balanced life. In fact, you should. More importantly, make the decision to be with the family more often, despite the office’s demand for more of your time.
These are simple tips to implement, but they are the tips that will help you balance family life with frequent business trips. The sooner you implement these tips, the sooner you can spend more (quality) time with the family.