How do you run a successful technology consulting business and still find time to ski in Switzerland and tour the streets of Italy? UXC Consulting's CEO Nick Mescher tells us that it's all about staying connected.
(Credit: UXC Consulting)
What technology do you travel with and why?
A lightweight laptop is a must when I travel, and I get over three hours with the extended battery. Pairing this with my iPhone, I have the connectivity and content I need wherever I am.
What technology do you miss from home?
At home I enjoy working with my large monitor, its ergometric design means it is so much better to work on, plus I can see everything I need on one screen, rather than using a laptop.
Personal travel advice/tip?
Just say no to the snooze button! I'm always happy to forgo 15 minutes' sleep to get to the airport early and ahead of time. It's a small price to pay to reduce stress levels when in transit, as you never know what travel issues may arise.
How do you deal with jet lag?
As part of my travel planning, I do all I can to arrange flights, meetings and other details to arrive at my destination in the evening. It's a great way to set the body clock, coupled with a light meal and a few glasses of red, it makes it easier to go off to sleep!
What (if any) travel websites do you use?
I have used a number of different travel sites but tend to use whichever Google points me to on any given day depending on if I need sightseeing tips to while away an hour, restaurant guides, local weather and time zones.
What was your biggest travel disaster?
Negotiating a foreign city is always stressful for an out-of-towner. My rookie mistake was hiring a car in the centre of Rome, Italy, which didn't include a GPS device. It took two hours to try to negotiate the mere two kilometres back to the hotel I had just walked from. The highlights were several fist-shaking angry Italians, travelling the wrong way, down many one-way streets and a lot of stress. Maybe I should have got a Vespa á lá Roman Holiday instead? A bottle of Chianti settled me down when I finally reached my destination.
What was your last technology purchase?
I love technology that brings me closer to people; my new webcam gives me more face-to-face time with my management team — which is great to simply talk, and not drown in a sea of emails — and as a bonus I can check in with my family and friends when I'm travelling, especially as my family starts to spread their wings, too.
What is your dream travel technology to have on planes/in airports/at hotels?
I'd love to access internet in the air. I'm looking forward to the day when Australian airlines make Wi-Fi available, like they already do in the US. Bring on iPlanes!
Which airport would you prefer to be stranded at and why?
Dubai, a city within a city. It really has a lot to offer, from camel rides, souks, old districts and soaring skyscrapers, plus beaches, deserts and a Little Venice, too.
Where is the best place you've been for duty-free technology shopping?
Shopping is the national pastime in Singapore, and in my travel experience this would be my top choice, loads of shops for price comparing, be sure to see Sim Lim Square and be ready to haggle.
What technology do you expect in hotels when you are travelling?
Free Wi-Fi so you are instantly online the minute you check in.
Favourite destination city to work/visit and why?
Zurich, Switzerland, is a super-efficient city to work in, with fantastic transport and infrastructure, and once you have some downtime it's only hours from the Swiss Alps. I have a passion for skiing, so the added benefit of being on the doorstep of the best resorts in Europe makes it a standout destination.
Name one thing you wish your iPod/phone/laptop could do that it doesn't do now?
As someone who juggles quite a few mobile devices, I still struggle with keeping them all synchronised, to make sure I can work seamlessly online or offline. I'm looking forward to Apple's iCloud making this work the way it should. Can't wait for the eCloud!