Tuesday, November 22, 2011

A day in the life of Lisa...

Hey all! A day in the life... is back with Lisa! Thanks so much for sharing your day traveling to my my favorite midwestern city, Chicago! For those of you who don't know Lisa, she works as a fixed income analyst.

Hello to Emily’s readers, it’s Lisa of Lisa’s Yarns!  When Emily asked if I was interested in participating in this series, I thought it would be interesting to record what all happens on a day when I am traveling for work.  This trip to Chicago was atypical as I did not have client meetings, but it gives you an idea of what it is like to travel for work!  I apologize for the lack of pictures…  I think my co-workers would have thought I’d lost my mind if I had taken pictures during the day – and then I felt horrible on the flight so the last thing on my mind was taking pictures of anything!!

5:30 – Wake up in hotel room, get ready for work while listening to Pandora

6:30 – Check out of hotel, stop by Starbucks for the mandatory pumpkin spice latte that will help me get through the long day at work.  Get a fruit cup with the hopes this will sustain me through the day (I usually eat eggs for breakfast).

 7:00 – Arrive at the Chicago office to find that there is no receptionist so I need to call one of the sales reps so they can let me in.  Cross fingers that I reach some.  Cross fingers that I am actually in the right place.

7:15 – Get settled into a random desk.  Overheat and sweat profusely because this office is hot, it is unseasonably warm in Chicago, and I am wearing a wool dress with tights (it was cold when I packed, I never imagined it’d be so warm in Chicago).  Hook up laptop, fan myself, consider ditching cardigan (but don’t because I am wearing a sleeveless dress).  Check in with my boss.

 8:00 – Call into our Monday morning trader call, take notes on what happened in each market.

 8:30 – Start going through emails, follow up on things, research a question a sales rep asked.  

 10:00 – Conference call meeting with our off-site boss in Charlotte.  Try to stay engaged in this conference call.  Try to remember to mute the phone each time I cough (I have a wicked cold/cough)

 10:30 – Start to sit with the various sales reps, ask them questions about their client base, attempt to sound smart and get them to like me. 

 12:15 – Wonder if the guy who said he would take me to lunch is actually going to follow through on this…  Hmm….  * insert sound of stomach grumbling *

 12:30 – Grab lunch with the cube mate of the guy who said he would take me to lunch.  Talk work stuff, continue to try to sound smart and get this rep to like me. 

 12:45 – Bring lunch back to the office, eat at desk while answering questions about my job/my life/the market from people sitting around me. 

 1:00 – More meetings with sales reps to talk about their clients/how I can help.   Make tentative plans for a return trip when I will meet with their clients. 

 2:00 – Check in with my boss again, talk about what I will finish up before leaving for the airport. 

 2:30 – Lead another trader conference call, take notes about the different markets.

 3:00 – Say good bye to everyone, walk to the train.

 4:10 – Arrive at airport, track down healthy food (sushi), charge iPhone, decompress from a long day of talking to people and being “on”. 

 5:45 – Board plane, pretend I am mute so the person next to me does not talk to me on the plane.  Tune out others around me, fantasize about sleeping in my bed that night.

 7:30 – Flight lands, impatiently wait for people to de-plane, wonder if the people on this flight have ever flown because it should not take this long to de-plane.

 7:50 – Get onto light rail train.  Exchange knowing look with fellow traveler who is appalled at the loudness of his seatmate’s headphones.  Put on headphones, attempt to zone out everyone around me. 

 8:20 – Get off train, walk home to my condo.

 8:30 – Arrive home in my condo.  Breathe deep sigh of relief.  Unpack necessities as I am too exhausted to unpack my whole suitcase (very out of character for me, but I was so exhausted.  And sick.) 

 8:45 – Shower to remove the grime of work and travel from my body.

 9:00 – Take melatonin, go to bed.  Marvel at how comfortable my bed is compared to the hotel beds I have slept in the last 3 nights!

So I was up at 5:30, and in bed at 9, which is probably about a typical day for me.  I really enjoy traveling for work, as it’s great to meet people after talking to them on the phone for months, but I have to say that it is totally exhausting to travel – and this trip was especially tough because I was sick with a terrible cold/sinus infection – I actually ended up going home sick the day I got back!  When I was younger, I thought traveling for work was so glamorous, but now that I travel for, I realize that it’s really not very glamorous at all and you really do not get much time to appreciate the cities you are visiting!  That said, I still do enjoy it as it’s fun to get out, put faces to names/voices from phone conversations, and meet with their clients.

Thanks so much for sharing with us Lisa! I know, sometimes I wish I could just be a professional traveler.  Perhaps a travel blog writer? Yes.. that would sounds perfect, if I only had to travel in warm areas!

Do you travel for work?

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