Small-business owners shaping our work-centric travel trends

It’s no secret Australians are embracing flexible working conditions, with almost 30 per cent of the workforce saying they no longer work in a “traditional” job. However, new research from Xero reveals a new wave of work-centric travel trends sweeping the nation and small-business owners are being championed as the driving force behind the rise of Australia’s nomadic entrepreneurs.

According to Xero’s Travel Habits Report, which compares the travel habits of working Australians and small-business owners, almost half (48 per cent) of small-business owners have embraced working remotely while on holidays over the past 12 months. Of those that did work remotely, 25 per cent worked interstate, 14 per cent worked overseas, while nine per cent did both. Comparatively, just one in five Australian workers have incorporated remote working into their holidays.

The 80:20 balance

The Xero research also showed that small-business owners are increasingly embracing the emerging 80:20 travel trend, whereby 80 per cent of a holiday is leisure and 20 per cent is focused on work.

Some 43 per cent of small-business owners had already implemented the 80:20 rule and over 21 per cent more said they planned to do so when taking a holiday in the next 12 months.

Not only is the 80:20 trend inspiring the next wave of nomadic entrepreneurs, it may also affect the way in which everyday Australians manage their work-travel-life balance. The one in five Aussie workers who admitted to also adopting the 80:20 approach during a recent holiday, said they did it to reduce work-related stress. This number is set to rise, with nearly 20 per cent more Australians planning to do so in the future.

In addition, 64 per cent said they would be open to working a little while on a holiday, if it meant they could take more annual leave or go on more trips. Small business owners were even more enthusiastic, with 70 per cent saying they would do so.

Anneliese Urquhart, Small Business Director, Xero Australia said, “It’s really positive to see that small-business owners are embracing new ways to travel and setting an example of how everyday Australians can manage their careers, while fulfilling their travel aspirations through entrepreneurial work practices.

“Australians are extremely hard-working and at times not putting their personal needs and well-being before their work. As ambitious and career-driven as small-business owners and employees are, we want to ensure all workers are taking necessary time off and believe this can be easily achieved by adopting simple tactics, such as making time for remote working regularly, embracing the 80:20 trend while on holiday, and using remote working tools and cloud based technology such as Xero,” Anneliese added.

Findings showed 64 per cent of Australians would be open to working a little on holiday if it meant they could take more annual leave, or go on holidays more often. However, one in 10 Aussies aren’t taking annual leave regularly because they’re “too busy with work.”

“We encourage both small-business owners and employees to use the tools that they have available to them to enable a better work, life and travel balance. Simple tactics such as moving your business to the cloud or using technology to organise your systems and process, can enable working Australians to have the holiday they deserve, without the unnecessary stress of feeling disconnected from the workplace,” said Annelise.

The 43 per cent of small-business owners who have adopted these strategies have cited improved work life balance (79 per cent), enhanced relationships with family and friends (71 per cent) and increased personal productivity (47 per cent).

Inside Small Business

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