This is just painful.

 

I am on yet another flight across the country – which, I guess, is becoming my best Blog writing location.

 

For all of the “Virtual” things I talk about these days – what I want to know is: since EMC is the leader in virtualization - why can’t “Virtual Mark” go on the trip this time? I asked my team - still in beta I guess…

 

Anyone who believes that business travel is glamorous clearly has not traveled in the last 20 years – unless of course you made so much money on that last IPO that the G5 now seems tolerable.

 

There are just so many things that could be done to make travel just a bit easier - but that would just take way to long to get into so here is a simple suggestion for what to do on airplanes.

 

Think.

 

One of my favorite notions is to always “think strategically and act tactically.” More critically, I believe we all should spend time doing both. I think the concept is obvious but it can be harder than you think. It is easy to fall into doing just one.

 

For me, planes are the last respite (and I know that is changing too) from “push” technology like Email and phones. They are a great place to think strategically. For me, the worst place to “think” is actually at work. There is just too much to attend to, too many interruptions, meetings, phone calls. I understand my time is not really mine when I am in the office – it is scheduled for me. While, I am not always even sure of the algorithm, the queue is almost always full. One time when I really needed to put together my thoughts for a strategy presentation, I volunteered for a customer visit across the country mostly to get enough thinking time in!

 

One other comment, I recommend that you never hold “strategy” meetings in your office, or your normal conference room. Strategic thinking requires opening up your perspective and I just don’t believe that most people do that well in a setting where they spend 99.9% of their time fighting the day-to-day fires. In fact, while I have no proof, I have found that the more unique and different I can make the location, the more the team will start to think “out of the box.” It doesn’t have to be at some expensive hotel either – you can do them in a warehouse or at your house – just not where you “work.”

 

Hopefully most airlines will not be able to afford wireless for some time so my last respite remains. And yes, I know I can turn off the phone and close the EMAIL window- but it’s just not the same!

 

Mark…

 

 

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