Let’s face it. We all depend on our cars to keep our businesses moving forward. Whether it’s going out on a cold call, attending a business function or meeting a customer for lunch, business owners drive everywhere.
Here are my top three tips to keep your office on wheels up to speed with the essentials:
1. Office Supplies:
Have you ever been at a networking event only to find you don’t have enough business cards? Or you left your new brochure back at the office?
Why don’t you create a second office in the trunk of your car? You always have your car with you, so it’s the perfect place to store the business materials you need. Place a sturdy box in your trunk, and load it up.
Items you may want to keep in your trunk kit:
● Business cards
● Promotional items
● Stamped notecards, for a quick thank you
● Written list of phone numbers, including emergency numbers and a tow company
Other items worth considering:
● Phone charger
● Spare dollars and quarters for miscellaneous expenses or parking meters
● Jacket, for those cooler nights
● Clean blouse (just in case)
● Water bottle (especially one that can keep water cold)
● Tennis shoes and socks (no fun walking far in heels)
● Nutrition bars, nuts, fruit or other healthy snacks
● Good book
● Notebook and pen
2. Learn while you drive:
With our busy schedules we seldom have time to read, whether it’s a best-selling novel, a book on personal growth, or a book about building your business. Consider listening to a book instead. It is my favorite thing, and I have listened to over a dozen books in just a few months.
Two of my favorite audiobooks include:
● The Luck Factor by Brian Tracy
● The Ultimate Sales Machine by Chet Holmes
3. Car Care Basics:
No one is ever prepared for a car breakdown, and when one happens, it’s usually at the worst possible time. Most people want to avoid visits to the auto repair shop, but a scheduled maintenance program is the number one thing you can do to extend the life of your car at the lowest operating cost.
Allowing an expert technician to examine your car will uncover potential problems that could cause engine damage or poor performance.
The best things you can do for your car:
● Oil change: schedule one every 5,000 to 7,500 miles.
● Check coolant and oil fluid levels; running low can ruin your engine.
● Regular tire rotations help your tires wear better and last longer.
● Notice what happens when you start the engine, when the car shifts gears, and when you apply the brakes. Changes can be the start of a problem.
Listen for unfamiliar noises when driving, and make a mental note of when they happen – for instance, is the car hot or cold; is it going fast or slow? This will alert you to potential issues you can discuss with your auto repair shop.
No one likes going to the auto service center, but routine checks of fluids, belts, hoses, gaskets and other moving parts will help prevent those expensive breakdowns and save you money in the long run.
Take care of your car, and it will take care of you!
About Your Columnist
Debbie Wright is a featured columnist for Women Taking Charge, the official blog of Connected Women of Influence, where she covers everything about your “office on wheels.” She is a single mom of five and the owner of MOTEC Auto Care, located in San Diego. She shares her knowledge by educating women and young teens on the basics of car care.