How to Be Productive on a Plane

Bob FranquizChurch

I just got back from Connecticut where I was teaching a Zero to Sixty seminar and I had so much to do before I landed in Hartford.  I was able to get a lot done before I was on the ground that it made me want to write a post about how to be productive when you're traveling.  Here's a few ways: 

1. Get a seat where you won't be disturbed – You won't get anything done if you have to get up every 20 minutes because the people in your row have hyperactive bladders.  Instead, sit where you won't be interrupted.  

2. Have a variety of things to do – I bring 3 books, my laptop, a notepad and a bunch of mp3's to listen to on every flight.  Why? Because sometimes I'll want to write, other times I'll want to listen to something and other times I'm working through my "to do" list. Plus, if you're only working on your computer, the minute they tell you close it for take off and landing, your productivity stops.  But if you have a book in your bag, you can close your laptop and pick up your book.  

3. Have a plan – I usually have a plan of what I need to accomplish in the time I'm in the air.  This past trip, I needed to finish a Sunday message.  So I eliminated the distractions and got to work.  

4. Stay focused – This is difficult.  There's usually a movie playing, flight attendants asking questions and the lure of looking out the window.  But you'll be amazed how much you can get done if you stay focused on your tasks.  

Flying is usually a great time of productivity for me.  Think about it – how often are you in an environment where no one can get to you? No email, no cell phone, no twitter, and no internet.  Sometimes I think about booking a flight just to have the focus time ­čÖé