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Global business travel builds sales and stress: The seven stages of business travel stress

Published on:
Updated on:
January 08th, 2019

In their latest paper “Global Business Travel Builds Sales and Stress: The 7 Stages of Business Travel Stress” (featured in the HBR Blog Network of the Harvard Business Review), HEC Paris professors Michael Segalla, (Management and Human Resources) and Dominique Rouziès, (EDF Chair Marketing) explain how business travel is essential to firms and should not be viewed as a cost.  It is an investment.

segalla_business travel stress

A high quality relationship with clients often requires face-to-face meetings resulting in high business travel frequency. Firms generally try to control the costs. However, these cost-cutting policies can add heavy psychological, physical, and emotional burdens on business travelers. To explore these personal costs, a survey of over seven thousand business travelers assessed their stress levels across thirty-three typical travel stressors was conducted. According to the authors' analyses, travel stress appears to vary depending on the hierarchy, gender, and geographical location. 


segalla_business travel stress

Click here to interact with the timeline and learn more about the travel stress findings. (From the Harvard Business Review Interactive Blogs, April 30 2014)


In this interview, Prof. Segalla describes what kind of executives typically become more stressed during a business trip and he also makes recommendations concerning how firms can manage and diminish the stress levels of their business travelers. He also discusses when it makes financial sense for a firm to send their employees in premium or business class seats.

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