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4 Ways to Avoid Stress Away From Your Desk

Transitioning your desk from a physical office into virtual space while travelling has never been easier than now. With the dearth of technology, networking, and media available to keep you connected from socially and professionally, going on the road but still managing your staff is totally doable. However, it can take some getting used to. Managing from afar can be stressful if you're used to working with colleagues in person, especially if you prefer not to leave someone in your stead when you're gone. Here are are four tips about how to stay calm and collected when you're on the road, but still trying to manage a staff.


1. Understand the Meaning of Face Time

It can be a challenge to truly understand the difference between having face time versus its value. Although trying to get some people to join a video conference or phone call can be difficult, getting them there is only half the battle. The real measuring stick of face time as a valuable interaction is what comes of it. Fast Company advises that when you're managing people from a distance, what really talks isn't face time, but results. Many businesses use services like BlueJeans video conferencing to stay connected with their staff while on the road, but the bottom line is setting expectations during face time. Managing effectively from a distance means that you need quantifiable results, since you can't walk over to someone's desk and inquire about their progress on a project. Rather, get together on video, set a deadline and a particular productivity goal, and then check back in when the deadline's up. This is an easy, foolproof way to ensure that your staff is taking care of business, even when you're traveling, especially if your workplace is also a more laid back environment.


2. Take Measures to Remain Grounded

You also need to take care of yourself, and conversing with colleagues and even family members using live communication tools like video conferencing and text chat is a good way to do so. It's easy to get lost in the professional riptide of being on the road for business, especially since it often takes even more concentration to keep track of both things going on back in the office, and the tasks at hand on your end of things. Therefore, touching base with people who have a calming effect and can help ground you is extremely important. Don't rely solely on yourself to keep your sanity while on the road.


3. Choose the Right Technological Tools

Business 2 Community advises that one of the most obvious, yet underutilized tactics to up your management game is to take advantage of technology the right way, using apps and tools to minimize wasted time. The difference between trying to use technology to improve efficiency and failing, versus choosing the right tools and becoming more productive, is matching specific technology to the right tasks. For example, cutting back on unnecessary email conversations is always a plus. While this can be a useful tool for brief conversations and exchanges of information, you've probably been involved more than once in a rambling, long email thread that only serves in the long run to confuse, rather than clarify. Use features that are available in different apps to help do things like keep track of time, set alarms, and most importantly, communicate. Don't forget that if you're going to video conference during your travels, it's essential to ensure that the provider you're using is accessible via different devices. No need to lug along a heavy laptop if you can video conference through your tablet.


4. Stay Focused 

U.S. News recommends that one of the best tactics for staying focused during business travel is to keep it simple, and don't try to haul everything from your desk with you on a trip. This is another aspect of why technology is helpful with conducting business on the road, because you don't have to get bogged down with every file folder, a heavy laptop, and bulky binders if you can access all of your essential materials virtually. Reducing clutter, even when packing and getting set up in a hotel room or other temporary accommodation, will help you to multitask where need be and focus on the things that matter.Although your first thought about the value of video conferencing is that it reduces travel costs, that's  not its only benefit. One of the core ideas behind video conferencing is transitioning the boardroom into a virtual space, where you can convene with remote workers or meet with fellow colleagues across the world. This technology has the power to also allow you to manage your staff without being there in person. As long as you stay cool and collected and utilize the tools available, you can continue to be just as productive off-site as you would be in your office.


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