What I learned from business traveling

Business and pleasure connect when you travel the world

You know that old saying that “business and pleasure don’t mix”? Well, I have to say that I strongly disagree; especially when your job means that you have to travel and your business takes you to some of the most exciting cities in the world and has you face to face with some really interesting people. This is particularly the case if your main job is in the world of photography, like mine.


Every traveler will agree that the one part of any trip that they do not look forward to are the long hours on flights squashed into a seat that seems to turn into a vice grip the minute the plane leaves the tarmac. But if you consider the fact that Air Travel is what you make of it, then you could see that seat as a welcome opportunity to meet someone new or find out something interesting about another person on the plane. Have you ever looked at another person on a flight and wondered what their purpose for flying is? I will never forget being seated next to a rather large man on a New York bound flight, who seemed to melt over the armrests into my already small space. Within the first few minutes the man had introduced himself and actually turned out to be quite a well known wrestler; (in his Australian hometown), who was headed to NYC to appear in a top magazine. The fact that I was a photographer meant that we immediately hit it off and are to this day still friends who connect whenever I am back in Sydney on business. So when it comes to your next Air Travel date, use the time to connect with someone; who knows you might just make a friend.

I was also introduced to the owner of Florido Weddings Photography & Videography while I was there; the work of this photographer is nothing short of amazing. I loved the work so much that I absolutely had to link to it so you could check it out for yourself. I will be hiring Florido for some training to lift my game when I am photographing during travel.


Go and go again.

This brings us to the fact that business travel means new cities that need to be navigated and experienced on a regular basis. When you are jumping from one city to the next it becomes painfully obvious how diverse the cultures of this world truly are. What might be considered standard business practice in one country may be offensive in another; similarly how one city operates will be completely different in another. Recently a trip that took me from Paris to London and then from there to Tokyo and ended in New York had me completely turned around. But once home and I could settle into looking through photographs I had taken of these main cities; I realized how interesting and unique they all were.

The people; the buildings and then the different languages were all aspects that created a lasting impression on me as a person. Seeing people through traveler’s eyes is one way to be completely unbiased and opens one up to experiencing the culture of a new country and city to its fullest extent. For instance in Tokyo, sitting down at a restaurant meant being cross legged on the floor; while in Paris fine dining meant you paid a fortune for portions of food no bigger than a penny! But embracing each city with its various diverse culture and characteristics is how you start to understand why doing business on an international level means you have to think outside of the box.

Which brings us to; how do you find those all important business connections while abroad? From experience and due to how different cultures operate the two proven trends in meeting new business associates is either by heading out to have a meal with them or if you are in London then the local corner pub is where a lot of the best business deals are done. In order to meet and expand you have to adapt and grow.

So if it means meeting at the Earl Ferrer or Greenwich Union pub in London is what needs to be done in order to synch that deal then so be it! Restaurants and Bars offer their own sense of creativity and when meeting someone for the first time will serve as a good way to start off on a trust based relationship. In all honesty this is the true reason why business and pleasure should mix and continue to turn every business trip into a successful adventure that aims to broaden your horizons and bank balance in one swift flight.