Preparing your business for Christmas needs to be more than digging out your Santa hat and draping a little bit of tinsel over your computer monitor.
In order to actually enjoy Christmas time with your family, secure in the knowledge that your business is happily ticking over, the planning needs to start now!
Back when I was a Primary School teacher, there was a reason rehearsals for the Christmas performance started in October! We can’t simply expect things to flow smoothly without preparing beforehand.
So NOW is definitely the time for you to start preparing your business for the holiday season!
Let’s take a look at what you should be doing now…
Decide how much time you will take off from your business
Part of the joy of owning your own business is that you dictate when you take time off from work to enjoy the holidays. No asking permission or filling in holiday forms! But you do need to plan carefully and be aware of different factors.
Decide what is best for you and your business
How much time do you WANT to take off?
How much time can you realistically be fully off?
Will you be working between Christmas and New Year?
Be aware of family commitments
Do you have any young children who will be off nursery or school over the break?
What childcare or activities are available to you?
Find out dates of school Christmas Performances/Pantomimes/Parties etc.
Discuss any plans with family and find out if there are occasions which mean you need to be out of town, travelling, uncontactable etc.
Make sure you are aware of Bank Holidays
When key festive dates fall on the weekend, Bank Holidays aren’t always where we expect. Check the dates now. These may allow you some unexpected time off which you can dedicate to family time or use to catch up.
Now, get a calendar, wall planner, or even a big piece of A3 paper, and map out the month of December and the beginning of January so that you can see it at a glance. This is also great for making sure partners and children are on board too.
Plotting out the days now will help you plan out when you CAN or WANT TO work and then you can organise your workload accordingly.
Inform clients of your Christmas business plans
Make sure clients or other key people are informed of when you are going to be ‘off radar’. You can do this via email and put any key dates in your email signature nearer the time. Don’t forget to set up that seasonal Out Of Office too!
Add your Christmas schedule to your online calendar and/or update your booking scheduling software accordingly. If you want to spend the last 2 or 3 days tying up loose ends, make sure you can’t be booked by surprise!
Plan your Christmas social media
What’s your plan for Christmas posts?
🎄Business as usual
🎄A complete digital detox
There’s no right or wrong answer here, but take some time to think about your strategy and plan it out.
Batch writing your content for December and January now needn’t be a massive face-ache.
Beginning now, and setting aside time each day will help you later on.
Also, decide on your engagement strategy. Some people take their Social Media apps off their phone over the break and switch off completely, whereas others find it’s a great time to nurture relationships with potential clients when everyone is full of turkey and sick of watching Santa Clause II…
Tie up loose ends before Christmas break
Returning from any holiday as a business owner means you have to hit the ground running. Tidy up your business loose ends now and make the return that much smoother.
🧮 Are your accounts due in January? Don’t leave it until then! Get those up to date now and send any outstanding invoices (and pay any!).
🧹 Tidy your desk and drawers (including that junk drawer or basket – yes, we all have one!)
💻 Clear off your computer desktop (and your downloads folder).
📔 Go through any notebooks and scraps of paper. Put any actions into your Project Management Tool.
📧 Delete any old emails and tidy up your Internet Bookmarks.
Plan for 2023
What will you be focussing on AFTER the break?
Make a vision board for 2023 and think about how you want your business to look.
🤔 Will you be launching a new product or service?
🤔 Do you have plans to outsource, expand, or take on staff?
🤔 What are your major goals for 2023?
You can easily make a vision board on Canva. Mine is both printed out and on the background of my laptop desktop.
Create this now and it will be a great way to refocus when you return in January.
However you’re spending your Christmas, I just want to wish you a very merry festive season and a productive 2023! 🎄🎅🏻🎄🎅🏻
PS: I have a handy checklist ‘10 Things to do Before the Christmas Break’ which can help you prepare. Pop your details in the form below and I’ll send it out to you as an early Christmas gift! 🎁