Suffolk Business - Fall 2008 - (Page 26)
ALUMNI PERSPECTIVE Highs & Lows of Business Travel By Lana Belousova-Caron, MBA ’03 I’ve always been fascinated by travel, be it across the city or across the pond. The mystery and anticipation of seeing someplace new made me feel intrigued and alive. So I grabbed every opportunity I had to explore unknown territories. And naturally, when I contemplated my future career, business travel seemed to be intimately intertwined with other aspects of my dream job. As I progressed from school to workforce, however, I realized that business travel sometimes is not all you might imagine it to be. Glamorous and exhilarating, at times, it can quickly become mundane and exhausting. But like everything else, if you do your homework and set the right expectations up-front, business travel can oﬀer exciting opportunities and enhance your career and personal life. As some wise man once said: “The best way to learn about life is through travel”. To get the full scoop about this topic, I sat down with Sue Baumgaertner, BSBA’02, GDA’04 an audit manager with Grant Thornton’s Boston oﬃce, who is near completion of her year-long secondment (i.e. extended out-oftown work assignment) in Hong Kong and who is about to venture on her next one in Munich, Germany. Sadly, due to my work commitments I was unable to ﬂy to Hong Kong to interview Sue in person. Yet, thanks to the wonders of the Internet, I did land a face-to-face meeting with our emerging business travel expert. LBC: What a pleasure to be able to talk about business travel with someone who is on business travel as we speak—in Hong Kong, no less! Many thanks for getting up so early to talk travel. Sue: It is my pleasure to share what I’ve learned with other young professionals. I am a ﬁrm believer that success on the road can be an important aspect toward overall success in public accounting in addition to the opportunities for career enrichment. LBC: Assuming that your normal work day does not begin with a hard-hitting interview, how do you like to get your morning going while on the road? Sue: (Laughs) I like to get my day started early. This is the time I get my exercise done. If I don’t do it in the morning, it is very hard to ﬁnd time for it later in the day as there is usually so much to do while onsite and hours can be long. LBC: How do you generally help yourself adjust to a new time zone? And was it difﬁcult for you to get used to the 12-hour difference between Boston and Hong Kong? Sue: To be honest with you, I was too busy and excited to think about this time difference or jet-lag when I arrived in Hong Kong between getting settled in lodging, meeting my new colleagues and exploring new places. Luckily, Hong Kong is like New York City, a city that never sleeps. So I quickly learned where to get breakfast during dinner time and the other way around. And my colleagues and clients here were also very helpful during that transition time, providing me so many good suggestions. However, during shorter trips, when you may not have the luxury of “getting used to” the time difference, I would suggest planning ahead: getting a good sleep the night before and drinking lots of liquids, eating and going to bed on local time once your reach your destination. This will help your “body clock” adjust to the new time zone faster. “The best way to learn about life is through travel” LBC: How did you go about immersing yourself into a totally new culture and work environment? And how might these strategies translate for other young professionals, traveling to other parts of the US and abroad? Sue: On this trip, the process of becoming acclimated to Hong Kong’s culture was exciting and challenging at the same time. 26 Suffolk Business Alumni Magazine ~ Fall 2008
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Suffolk Business - Fall 2008
Suffolk Business - Fall 2008
Institute for Executive Education
Alumni Profile and Classnotes
Suffolk Business - Fall 2008
If you would like to try to load the digital publication without using Flash Player detection, please click here.