Being an entrepreneur isn’t easy. In fact, it’s one of the hardest journeys one can embark on, as the majority of startups and new businesses fail. There are plenty of tips to give you a better chance at succeeding, but I want to talk about one that isn’t mentioned nearly enough: travel more.
There are several benefits to traveling, which can have a positive impact on your business. Here are three reasons why traveling will help make you a more successful entrepreneur.
1. You learn to fully leverage technology
Many entrepreneurs simply haven’t fully embraced technology yet, and still rely on communication methods and procedures that keep them locked inside an office all day. When you travel, you are forced to leverage technology to run your business.
I love to travel, but I also love my business. Because of technology, I am able to run my marketing agency from a laptop and smartphone from any corner of the world. Most VoIP phone systems have apps that you can install, turning your smartphone into your office phone, allowing you to stay connected to your office regardless of your location.
Team collaboration tools like Slack and various applications such as video conferencing software and cloud file management and storage can help you stay connected to your entire company, while allowing you to perform your work from anywhere that has an internet connection.
When you fully leverage technology, you see just how much freedom you can have. Many founders convert to a remote structure once they experience first hand how the entire business operation can be handled without office walls.
2. It helps to spark your creativity
Sitting at your desk and staring at the same scenery day-after-day will not positively impact your creativity. If anything, it will lead to a burnout and have a negative impact on your performance and business.
Successful entrepreneurs are good at handling unexpected obstacles and solving difficult problems. Traveling keeps your mind sharp, and you will find that your creative juices flow constantly while traveling.
Personally, some of my best ideas have come while traveling, and I don’t necessarily mean while sitting on a beach somewhere. Just recently, I got the idea for a new startup while at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, waiting out a layover.
3. Traveling exposes you to different cultures
Experiencing different cultures allows you to study how people interact, go about their day-to-day lives and it also lets you see first hand how businesses in different areas operate. So, whether you are embarking on a tour of Nicaragua, or spending a few days in Hawaii like I just did, embrace as much of the culture as you can.
Also, traveling helps you to build a strong network. Because of travel, I have business contacts from all over the world. As an entrepreneur, a strong network of like-minded people is crucial. Having a diverse network will play a major role in your success down the road.
Take time to introduce yourself to people and be friendly. You never know who you will meet in your travels. I’ve made a lot of contacts over the years just by starting a conversation while waiting for planes, having dinner at hotel bars and out exploring different areas.
Tip: if you really want to fully network while traveling, keep an eye on local Facebook groups and search for local entrepreneurial groups. Local meet-ups are held frequently all over the world.
Try to break away from the typical office setting as much as possible, even if you can’t travel the world — working remotely from a Starbucks or a co-working space can help spark creativity and being in the same environment as other entrepreneurs from different industries and backgrounds can benefit you greatly.