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Use your travelling time to your advantage and adopt some of the activities of the most successful eventprofs. Here are 15 ways you can be super productive on your commute.
Travelling to and from work and meetings can seriously eat up a big part of your day and dampen your productivity. Event professionals can spend a lot of valuable time commuting but that doesn’t mean that it has to be “dead time” as there are plenty of activities you can do to work towards your career goals or to achieve what you need to whilst in transit. Here are 15 ideas to make your commute more productive.
Use your commute to catch up with current trends, news and events within the event industry that are relevant to your work or read inspiring blogs and websites that can trigger new ideas. You can make this easier by following certain pages, social media or Instagram accounts so that your news feed is only filled with the best!
You can also download specific magazine or newspaper type apps tailored to events and the content that is relevant to you.
Goal setting makes you a better eventprof as you are clear on where to focus, where you are heading and what you actually want to achieve. Spend your commute looking at what you want to achieve during today, this week and this month, as well as more long-term aims, so that you are focused on exactly what you need to do and why. Your goals should be more strategic and bigger picture, rather than operational.
Choosing an active commute and running, walking or cycling has obvious health and fitness benefits, and can help you to achieve your exercise goals for the day. Getting some fresh air is a great opportunity for thinking and letting your mind wander, which can boost creativity. Also, the endorphin rush helps to give a high and can also motivate you to be more productive throughout the day. As an added bonus you are bypassing inevitable travel delays, stresses of being late, crowded carriages and vehicles.
Make A To Do List
There is always something satisfying about making a list and writing down all the tasks buzzing about in your brain. By the time you get into work you can have a list of everything that needs to be done in order of priority so that you are more effective and efficient from the moment you reach your desk. There is a secret power of to-do lists and they help keep you focused, motivated and organised but they aren’t merely useful for your career, you can also plan out what your evening or weekend will look like, including your shopping list and any chores you need to do so that you have a handy step-by-step guide to your day and don’t waste any time.
Networking is an integral part of being a successful event professional and you should try to use as many opportunities as you can to hone your skills. Depending on where you live in the world, starting up conversations on public transport may be frowned upon but it is a great way to practice networking and you never know who you might meet who needs the skills of an event planner! Being social and saying good morning/evening to people can genuinely make their day so at worst you’ll put a smile on someone’s face!
If the thought of talking with strangers fills you with fear or isn’t well received you can always opt for online networking instead. Use LinkedIn to identify new connections or strike up a genuine conversation on Twitter with industry influencers you admire.
Start Work Early
It seems obvious but your commute will probably be shorter if you can travel outside of peak times. Why don’t you get ahead and get to the office early to take advantage of the office being quiet, without phone calls and colleague to interrupt your thinking. Check through your list of what you want to do today and start it now!
Yes, that’s right, you have permission to sit on your phone and play games during your commute! However, you should focus on puzzles, memory and brain training games, especially in the morning to wake your brain up fully and allow you to be completely prepared when you get into work. Games that focus on cognitive function, when played regularly, can stop age-related memory degeneration and keep you sharp. This makes you more likely to be able to think and react quickly which are essential event planner traits.
Increase Your Skillset
Enrol in a new course that can complement your work and give your CV or event career a boost. You can opt to take online certifications or qualifications or start evening or weekend classes. Using your commute time to study won’t affect your work or eat into your free time. For those who have longer train or bus journeys you can fit in an entire day of recommended reading or study before you have even gotten to work and you will be working towards your career path at the same time!
Emails can be overwhelming and claiming back your inbox can be tricky. Use your commute to organise and reply to your contacts or catch up on threads and email chains that you haven’t had a chance to read through so that you are up to speed. You can also spend this time unsubscribing to irrelevant emails to stop your inbox getting cluttered and reduce the amount of distracting notifications that you get during the day.
Keeping up to date with research studies, journals and recent tech breakthroughs in the event industry is a great way to stay at the top of your game and ensure that you are brimming with ideas to keep your boss and clients happy.
Part of sales and prospecting is generating sales leads and nurturing them to convert, which can be time consuming and dull. Using your commute to identify potential new leads via social media and other outlets can all be done from your smartphone. Commit to finding a set number of contacts each week and keeping in contact with warmer leads already identified.
If you have a problem to overcome that you have been struggling with or need new ideas, use your commute to brainstorm and find a solution so that you can implement it when you get to work. No matter what mode of transport you take, brainstorming and taking notes is easy because you can either use a notepad, notetaker app or a dictation app that converts to text. Email this to others or onto yourself when you are done.
Sometimes we function on autopilot and can go days without paying real attention to our actions which doesn’t offer insight into how we are really doing. Try not to only reflect when things go wrong, try to analyze any areas you would like to improve on a regular basis and reflect whether you are on track to achieving your goals. You should also think about when things are successful to try to emulate that formula and replicate the results.
Reflecting on our day can help to deal with issues and make us more aware of the changing environment around us which can help you be more observant and predict changes in the industry or your company or team in general.
Catch Up On Social Media
Social media can be a time sucking task but is essential for maintaining relationships with followers for your brand in general. Those who are more active on social media tend to breed active and loyal followers so use the time to catch up and respond to those who have sent you a message, tweet or tagged you and engage with your followers on a personal level, no hard or soft selling, just so that they know you are present. You can use the time to schedule content too to ensure you are being social and updating your accounts regularly.
Of course it is absolutely fine to spend a commute or two relaxing, especially if this can give you the mental rest you need to be more productive and effective throughout the day. Working at a high velocity all the time can lead to burnout, doesn’t foster creativity or innovation and makes you more likely to make mistakes. Try getting rid of screen time altogether and give your eyes and brain a rest and instead listen to a motivational playlist, an audiobook or simply take in your surroundings.
Overall, your commute doesn’t have to be a total bust and there are plenty of productive tasks you can be doing while you make your way to work regardless of the mode of transport that you take. Being more mindful and doing things deliberately on your commute is the first step to a super productive day.