We’re an increasingly mobile society. That often means working away from our desks and at odd hours of the day.
I too am a digital nomad.
Today I’m writing from a hotel room on a laptop. I’m squeezing in a few hours of work before visiting an ill relative this evening. It’s really a win-win. I can meet my deadlines and make time for family.
But working from a hotel room does come with a few challenges — and perks. So, here’s a few first hand tips from me to you.
1. Make sure the hotel offers WiFi before booking the room. Since we seem to have Internet access 24/7, it can be shocking when you plug-in your laptop and find out that use of the WiFi service costs an additional fee (I paid a $20 per day resort fee in Las Vegas to have unlimited WiFi access), isn’t available at the moment (my current service is spotty and unpredictable), or simply isn’t offered.
2. Use the Do Not Disturb sign. Having a housekeeper walk in while you’re conducting a phone interview is awkward and I’m sure sounds super unprofessional to the person on the other end of the phone.
3. Close the windows during calls. Even if you’re enjoying a lovely breeze, you never know when an emergency vehicle will drive by with its sirens screaming or, if you’re on the ground level, someone will walk by the room while engaged in a conversation using only 4-letter words.
4. Get cozy. There are no rules against rearranging your hotel room. Go ahead and move the desk near a window or closer to power outlets. Do whatever will make you most productive. Just remember to move the furniture back at the end of your stay.
5. Explore your surroundings. Some hotels offer business centers with larger work spaces in a quiet zone. Find out the hours for these areas and if there is a fee to use them. Some larger hotels also offer basic business services including photocopying and dry cleaning drop off. At smaller hotels, scout out vacant breakfast rooms for mid-way work sessions.
6. Define your goals. Before you dive into your work, know what you want to accomplish, or what must get done. I find the seclusion very boring, which means I actually get a lot done if I have a “To Do” list to guide me. There are no dogs craving my attention or piles of laundry staring me down. Just my laptop.
So, do you work-on-the-go too? Tell me in the comments below some of your tips for getting work done when you’re away from your usual work environment.