Business trips are a major part of the life of a professional. Whether you are attending a conference in another city, making a day trip to another state or taking extended overseas business trips, traveling is just part of being a hard-working expert in your field.
But what if you can’t take a business trip right now? You may have important events in your family life, or your health might not be up to it. How can you skip the business trip without it reflecting poorly on your career?
It’s About Finding a Valid Reason
Do you have a legitimate reason you can’t travel on the business trip?
- You have a big family event coming up that cannot be missed for any reason (funeral, wedding, etc.)
- Your vehicle doesn’t work, and thus you cannot travel
- You have been injured and are unable to handle the rigors of travel
It can be tough to find a valid reason you’re not able to go on the business trip!
Sometimes an Excuse Works
Often, there is no valid reason that will allow you to get out of your business trip. Some family events aren’t important enough for you to avoid traveling, and there is always a way around a lack of vehicle. It may mean that you’ll need to come up with an excuse:
- You are sick (a legitimate illness that would stop you from going to work)
- You are injured (back and knee injuries are usually believable)
- You have family issues (a loved one in the hospital, death in the family, etc.)
- You have suffered an emotional or physical trauma (mugging, violent attack, home invasion, etc.)
All of these excuses will get you out of a business trip without negative feedback, but the sad truth is that they are lies. Career Addict in no way endorses lying, and you’ll find that lying is one of the worst things you can do! It sets a dangerous precedent, and it is proof that you aren’t the professional you need to be.
Talk To Your Boss
There is often a good reason that you are the one chosen for the business trip (your qualifications, your availability, etc.). It’s a good idea to talk to your boss about the trip, and find out why you were the one being sent. You may find that your being chosen is actually a huge compliment, and going on this business trip will be the right career move.
At other times, the boss will have simply chosen you at random, or there was no real reason for your being chosen. At those times, it’s often possible for you to ask for someone else to do the business trip, and you can use your excuse/valid reason to explain why you can’t go. If it’s not a career-changer or an important trip, it may be worth begging off or having someone else go.
The Sad Truth
You may end up going on that business trip, no matter what you say or do. Unless you’re willing to lie your face off (which makes you less than a professional), you’ll probably still travel because it’s what your company needs you to do.
Instead of seeing it as a bad thing, be grateful that you have a job. The economy is unpredictable and good jobs are scarce, so it’s worth putting up with a few business trips just to keep that job. If the trips help to advance your career, you should seize every opportunity that comes your way!