On the Road Again
Traveling with Little PINK Book CEO, Cynthia Good
Business travel for women is a big deal. We love it and hate it. It’s great to get away and explore new places, meet new people, expand our work-scope and world-view. But it’s also tough on the body, the family and the piling-up workload back at the office.
Still, my husband and I have spent the last two decades having a blast traveling to new places for work and turning it into fun. New research shows that we’re not alone in partaking in “bleisure” travel—mixing business and leisure travel together. According to Embassy Suites Hotels’ 4th annual Business Travel Survey, 61 percent of business travelers report that they maximize a business trip by extending their stay for leisure purposes at least some of the time. It is even more common among those who travel often, with nearly seven out of ten frequent business travelers extending their trips.
My husband and I recently visited San Diego, NYC, Rio and Cincinnati! Being together makes it fun wherever we go and takes the edge off of those flight delays and check-in challenges. During the workday, we have our separate meetings, and then reserve dinner for the two of us – no clients. It gives us a chance to be together, share the day’s experiences and support one another (60 percent of respondents say they would like to bring a significant other if they could being someone on their next trip!).
Certainly, frequent business travel can get out of hand and cause havoc, especially for women with families. But smart, lucky women are figuring out how to make it work. Sheryl Connelly, Manger of Global Trends and Futuring at Ford Motor Company, is one of those women. I met her during my participation on a panel last week called “Women Taking the Wheel: Powerful. Driven. Influential.” Connelly flew out to Atlanta to facilitate the conversation. Bright and early the next day, she was on a flight back to Michigan, eager to see her two young daughters.
However, there are some things we miss and wish we could have at home when we return from our business trips, according to the Embassy Suites survey. What do guys miss most? For 27 percent, it’s having a personal bartender, versus 18 percent of women. Women mostly miss the hotel's daily housekeeping (75 percent vs. 58 percent of men). For my husband and me, it’s also the sunset, which we don’t get to see much of living here in the beautiful forest called Atlanta.
While enjoying the sunset together during a recent “bleisure” trip to San Diego, I decided the real definition of success is the number of sunsets you get to see with those you love. Experiences like this drive home the fact that a beautiful career is just a subset of what’s most important – a beautiful life.
Safe, happy travels!