Does moving from A to B mirror itself in the traveler, giving us a clear sense of direction in our work? – Barnaby Lashbrooke

We think so. Time and again, business travelers find they’re more productive after an international romp (and not just because they return with more to do.) The travel itself has the effect of changing their work habits, and actually makes them better at what they do—whenever it is they get back to doing it.

Why is this?

Margaret Heffernan, a woman who runs five businesses in both Europe and the U.S., writes that before each trip she’s “seized by a desire to leave everything in good shape.” She also says that when traveling by plane, she wants to “use the opportunity to think differently, give the old left brain a rest.”

A marketing strategist in the international travel business, Mark Izatt, believes that travel “makes you more conscious of time and the need for efficiency.” He says, “It’s rare you get such a stretch of undisturbed time, use it wisely.”

What connects these accounts is the concept that air travel is an opportunity, not an obstacle. And isn’t it true that those who are most successful in business see everything in this light?

This is why television host Steve Harveysays, “That’s why they close the curtain [to first class] … you ain’t gonna believe what’s going on up there.”

Jazmine Valencia, founder of a music marketing company, says she will “read a business book in transit, to help the flow of new ideas…”

Maybe we need to start thinking differently about business travel. Where would that take us?