Imagine yourself moving freely through an airport. Carry-on slung over your shoulder, you glide weightlessly through the crowds and gates. Your only concern is you, your times, your needs. Hungry? Grab a sandwich. Thirsty? Sit for a beer. You watch a little Sportscenter, answer some emails, and then board your plane at your convenience.
Well, that’s not happening on this trip because there are ten of your teammates traveling with you. How do you move this happy bunch of world travelers as though they were a flock of migrating birds?
Communication is the key. What time to be at the airport, what time is the flight, who is carrying what. Clearly communicating the expectations of each individual and what they are responsible for creates clarity for the team.
Having an individual travel package for each traveler with a run sheet for times and flights will align the group. Communicating some simple travel tips will speed up travel for your team:
- Pack light – If you don’t have to check bags you will move smoother.
- Be nice – Don’t penalize yourself by being a jerk.
- Wear slip on shoes – speeds things up.
Rules for the road
When you are traveling as a team, what happens in Vegas comes back to Spokane with you. How can you avoid those uncomfortable, maybe even job costing, moments?
- Set behavioral expectations – This is not a party weekend and though you are all adults, clear boundaries are clear boundaries.
- If you are going to have to share rooms, do your best to allow choices that allow for those who are closest friends to share rooms.
- Assign drivers, and make sure they have good directions.
- Plan out meals ahead of time. You have a large group and restaurants need warning for large groups.
- Allow for freedom by being specific about times and locations for reconnecting.
Assigning roles for each person will give your team members a sense of being in control and playing a part. Assigning someone to be the keeper of the receipts, someone to be the timekeeper, someone to be the interpreter, someone to be the driver, or one to be in charge of loading and unloading luggage. Each role is valuable and serves to eliminate bickering and time eating debate as you are trying to move forward.
Allowing others to take specific leadership roles serves another purpose. As you give authority over various parts, you serve your part humbly under their leadership. Great leaders are humble followers first. Your humble submission to their leadership will be a model for them to observe.
Establishing your vision, mission, and purpose of the trip, reiterating it and stating it over and over again will keep you from vision drift, and will help you negotiate your way through the maze team travel can be.