Technology for Traveling Business Owners
Ah, business ownership. The thrill of being master of your own future, time and career. The chance to call the shots. The opportunity to become wealthy. All wonderful things.
The time you’ll spend on the road? Not always so wonderful.
Yet business owners are spending considerable time away from their business’ office and on the road. In fact, an Intuit Small Business Survey earlier this year found that business owners said that on an average week they spent 21 hours in the office and 12 hours on the road. In addition, they are at their clients’ places of business 3 percent of the time and use their cars as an “office” 3 percent of the time.
It follows that business owners need tools that can help them run a business away from their business.
Below are a few mobile tools we’ve found that piqued our interest (and look as if they will make your business travels more productive and efficient).
HPs Portable Electronic Whiteboard
Business owners often are – at least in the beginning – a company’s chief salesperson. Sales often require presentations. Presentations often mean you’ll need to use a whiteboard for writing flowcharts, notes, designs, and taking down client ideas.
Hewlett Packard has a nifty portable electronic whiteboard you can attach with a USB connector to a laptop or personal computer. The device, HP’s Pocket Whiteboard,” has a stylus that allows you to make any flat surface into a drawing board up to 10 feet tall.
Steering Wheel Desks
Since you’re spending a considerable amount of time on the road or even using your car as an office, a steering wheel desk makes great sense. The “desk” attaches to your steering wheel and gives you a flat space on which to write or place your laptop. The Wheelmate Desk is one auto desk brand to consider.
Have you heard of Pogoplug? If not, you will. This little device lets you connect a maximum of four hard drives from anywhere there’s a connection to the Internet. You can download any and all files (video, photos, data, text, you name it) from your computer, browser, tablet or even smartphone. It also backs up all your data. Want to post a photo to Facebook? Pogoplug allows you to do so with one click. It’s like having your own little “cloud” (as in cloud computing) in your pocket.
We really couldn’t have an article on technology for traveling business owners without mentioning what is perhaps one of the most innovative and efficient tools to help traveling business owners stay well, efficient. We speak, of course, of the tablet computer. Sure, we mean the iPad, but let’s not forget about the Asus EEE Pad Transformer, the Acer Iconia, and others. Smaller than a laptop, bigger than a smartphone, many tablets allow users to type documents, build graphs, create a slide presentation (Keynote for iPad, we’re talking about you!). Lightweight. Agile. What’s not to like?
Jean Henshaw began offering content writing and other marketing communications/ editorial services in 2008 after years of a successful journalism and public relations career. Her articles have appeared in Internet World, the San Diego Union, the Des Moines Register and many others. She is a senior writer with Pimsleur Approach, leading retailers of language learning courses including Learning Brazilian Portuguese and Learning Japanese.