Running a business can be challenging. On top of the everyday tasks such as managing staff, networking with clients and answering emails, you’ll be tasked with responsibilities such as recruitment, employee retention, paperwork and marketing. If you’re thinking of taking a break and booking a holiday, you may be wondering what to consider for your business before you jet off. Below, we’ve put together five things that you should think about before your holiday to ensure that everything is left running like clockwork.
1. Getting in touch with your staff
Although you’ll most likely want to switch off your management head when you jet off on holiday, it’s important that you remain accessible to staff who might need you – or find somebody who can take the burden from you when you’re not at home. If you are going to keep your phone on and remain active when you’re away from home, then be sure to set up regular conference calls throughout your break to stay in the loop with your staff.
If you run your business singlehandedly and don’t have a team of staff that you can rely on to answer calls when you’re away from home, then consider the professional call answering service from a company such as Planet Numbers. As well as ensuring that calls will be answered within three rings and that your customers are kept up-to-date on your travels, the service also takes messages for you when you get home, delivered to you via email and SMS message. That way, you’ll be able to get back to important business contacts immediately, without having to wait until you’re home from your getaway.
2.The day-to-day running of your business
The chances are that you play an integral role in the day-to-day running of your business, and the thought of stepping away from the machine and leaving others in charge is scary. It is, however, important to take time away from work – a holiday can reduce blood pressure, boost energy and increase your happiness levels for up to two weeks after you return home. What’s more, giving your staff the responsibility of managing your team will boost their confidence, equip them with new skills and increase job satisfaction in the process.
Unless you’re planning a last-minute getaway, you should let your staff know about your holiday in advance, and start making arrangements for them to shadow you and get to grips with the tasks they’ll be expected to carry out when you’re not here. One of the best ways of preparing your employees is by creating a list of duties, or if you have the time, creating a guidebook or help sheet of things they’ll need to know to get the job done.
3.Your online presence
If you’re responsible for your brand’s digital marketing efforts, then you’ll already understand the importance of social media and content marketing. Take the time to create content in advance, and schedule it on WordPress and by using tools such as Hootsuite. Even if you’re not in the country, you should ensure that your brand’s, and your own, social networking accounts are kept regularly updated with relevant content that your audience will enjoy – after all, the world doesn’t stop turning just because you’re sat on a beach!
4.The person you’re leaving in charge
As much as a collaborative working environment can be good for employees, having a figure in charge is the best way to ensure things go your way. If a management team isn’t already in place, then seek to find an employee that can handle the responsibility of managing your team when you’re away – and consider offering them a pay rise or a benefit for the extra pressure they’ll have to face. You should aim to complete this process well in advance of your holiday, and perhaps work through a transition period so that your other employees are familiar with, and understand, the temporary change in leadership.
Unfortunately, it’s impossible to think about every aspect of your business before you go on holiday, and some things are likely to be overlooked. However, it’s important to take the opportunity to relax and spend time with your friends and family, away from the pressures of managing a business.
With research by Sage suggesting that 30% of small business owners in the UK didn’t have a summer holiday last year, it’s essential that you buck the trend and book the holiday. A well-deserved break can give you a new lease of life, help you detox from the digital world we live in and find new answers to problems within your business. Whether you stay in the United Kingdom or you travel half way around the world, have a great holiday, and enjoy!