Running a business during the holidays can make it harder to relax, reflect, and prepare for the new year. Corporations and larger businesses slow as people take vacations to spend time with their families, but as an entrepreneur, it can be hard not to fret over your business in that downtime. Thankfully, there are a few things you can do over the holidays to balance your business and family time. Below are some ideas for how to prepare for the holiday season.
Making the Best of the Holiday Season
1. Mark your calendar
Even if you know the date by heart, it helps to mark holidays on your calendar. They tend to sneak up on us in busy years, but keeping a reminder near your desk will help you plan accordingly. You can also schedule social media posts, emails, and other office plans.
2. Set an out-of-office reply
Set your out of office email before you are going to be unavailable so people will know to expect a slower response. You can still monitor your email in smaller moments, but it helps to be upfront with clients.
3. Send a year-end email
Checking in with clients is an important part of customer service, and the holidays are the perfect time for a simple email to check in with them. You can use this email to touch base, ask for referrals, or wish them and their families well. This keeps you in their mind when their financial needs take priority again after the holidays end.
The holidays are the perfect time for a simple well-wishing email to touch base with clients.
4. Give gifts
If you want to go the extra mile, a gift or just a card is a great way to stand out. Especially after a tough year, sending clients a simple gift can go a long way in showing you care.
5. Change up your space
Clear up this year’s clutter at your home office or move your desk to a new part of the room for a different view. A change like this can give you a different perspective and while you don’t have to do a deep clean, you’ll be ready for a new start next year if your space feels fresh.
6. Reflect and evaluate
Chances are that your priorities shifted in 2020. Recognize that this has been a year where maintaining your life and business has become a serious accomplishment. Take a look at what you wanted to accomplish in 2020 and recognize what was possible and what became a challenge this year.
7. Consider next year’s goals
With last year’s benchmarks in mind, see how you can feed them into the new year’s goals. What felt impossible in 2020 but seems achievable in 2021? Were there any new opportunities in 2020? How can you keep successful programs going after the pandemic is over? Think of your goals in terms of sales, teamwork, product knowledge, productivity, and work/life balance.
8. Engage with your team
Boost spirits and culture by sending thank you notes, gifts, and whatever bonuses you can to your team. It’s not just about clients — everybody in your office worked hard to keep the business running, and this is a time to show people just how special they are in keeping the momentum.
With last year’s benchmarks in mind, see how you can feed them into this new year’s goals.
Learning how to enjoy your holiday break while making the most of this time of year can take some getting used to, but these eight steps will put you ahead in keeping your business running when it is time to get back to work. Enjoy what you can during this time of reflection and carry this peace of mind with you as you look toward the new year.
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