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TREAT ALL TRAVELING STAFF EVEN STEVEN?

Does your association have a travel policy?

If not, your association ought to, believes Business Travel News. The New York City-based publication put together a 10-page report on the subject, "Establishing a Travel Policy," for the April 10 issue.

As the introduction states, "A successful corporate travel policy encourages compliance among travelers by setting actual and reasonable guidelines, explaining the rationale behind them, and describing the penalties for noncompliance." The article provides a comprehensive rundown of travel policy options for an organization to consider. Discussed: developing guidelines for making travel arrangements; establishing parameters for air travel, hotel, car rental, and meal/entertainment choices; and setting policy for payment methods and expense reporting.

Before examining any of those areas, though, Business Travel News recom-mends a few critical overall questions, including:

* Who should be subject to the policy?

* How forceful should the policy be?

One particularly interesting question pertains to equal treatment. Following is an excerpt from the article, presenting various ways in which an organization might choose to treat travel by staff of varying position levels.

Question

"Should policy apply equally to all levels of employees?"

Options

1. Yes: This sends a message to employees that management is serious about controlling costs and that no one is above pitching in to help.

2. No: It might not be in a company's best interests, for example, for its president to waste time changing planes to save on the cost of a ticket rather than applying his expertise to achieving company goals. Special consideration should be given to vice presidents and above.

"When policy does not apply equally, some corporations do not make this apparent in their travel manuals, so as not to affect the morale of rank-and-file employees or their willingness to adhere to policies. But others feel that employees are accustomed to senior management having special perks, and that travel manuals should be forthright about the differences, lest travelers assume that superiors are ignoring policy and conclude that this is acceptable for them as well.

3. Because of concerns for orderly succession in case of a common disaster, many companies restrict the number of key executives who may travel together on a single aircraft, ground transport, or ship."

What you do

How equally does your association treat traveling staff? Whether you have a pol-icy in place or an opinion to share, please send a letter to Editor, ASSOCIATION MANAGEMENT, 1575 I St., N.W., Washington, DC 20005-1103. E-mail: editorial@asaenet.org.
COPYRIGHT 2000 American Society of Association Executives
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Title Annotation:establishing an effective travel policy
Publication:Association Management
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Aug 1, 2000
Words:410
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