Holidaying as the Owner of a Small Business – Can it be done?
Holidays, can it be done? Sure it can!
There are plenty of benefits to owning your own small business. Sadly, the holidays aren’t often very high on the list. Taking time away from your main source of income can be difficult and stressful, after all, it often relies on you to continue operating. However, as if it needs to be said, holidays are incredibly important – especially as a small business owner.
A recent study revealed that around 6 in 10 small business owners never take a day off – WHAT?!?! Also, those that do often end up checking in to make sure everything is running smoothly. Whilst this is quite a shocking statistic, it’s hardly surprising – sole traders often view themselves as the business, so if they’re not working they’re not earning. But, is this the right outlook to have?
Well, it’s important to always remember that taking a break from the day to day grind is very beneficial to both your mental and physical health, that results in you being a healthier leader. With that being said, here are some tips to keep in mind when you next take a sunshine break.
Tip One – Never forget the Benefits
If your run down or have a lack of motivation after working too much, your business is likely to be one of the things to take a hit. The fact is that both fatigue and stress lead to mistakes being made, which eventually impact your ability to reach the goals you’ve set.
Taking a break and returning revitalised and ready to crack on can only be beneficial to you and your business. Who knows, time on the beach away from the desk might result in that new idea that will propel your business to the next level.
Tip Two – Honesty
As a sole trader, breaking the news to your clients that your about to take time off can be quite scary. Contrary to popular belief, customers won’t just pick up sticks and switch to competitors because your week-long trip to Spain gets in the way of their project. Competitiveness is good, very good. But, it’s very unrealistic to believe that a client you have a proactive and strong relationship with will go elsewhere.
The key is to just be honest. Explain to them that you work hard and deserve a break – they will most definitely understand (they most likely enjoy holidays themselves, you know!)
Tip Three – It’s Never a Good time to be Away
Sadly, this is just the truth. There really is never a good time to go away. That’s just the nature of owning a small business, its unpredictable and workloads fluctuate. The only thing you can do is plan ahead. Tell your employees and clients well in advance so they can too plan. But do so with no apologies and offers to still check your email every day – you don’t want part of you in the office and the other half sipping a cocktail on the beach now, do you?
Tip Four – Trust Your Business
If you’ve hired and trained your employees properly, then you should trust that your business is in good hands whilst your away. You should also use this opportunity as a means to delegate tasks and see how your workforce handles the extra responsibility. After all, they may grasp this chance, which would only make your life easier going forward.
If you’re on your own, then we suppose this is the most challenging tip to follow. You’ve just got to ask yourself: do you live to work or work to live?
Ensuring Your Business is Holiday Proof
- Continuously train the team in each other’s roles where possible. That way if an employee leaves or becomes ill while you’re away, others can handle any predicament.
- Run your business in the cloud, that way you can always have access to key information whilst your absent.
- Be proactive and let your clients know who they can contact during your absence. This way their needs can still be met successfully.
- Conduct a pre-analysis of your business, identifying what could go wrong so that you can plan for the worst.
- Book a holiday every year. That’s right, book a holiday every year! Your staff will soon be more than capable of maintaining the high standards you’ve set, whilst your away.