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Helping Your Business Survive the Christmas Rush
Christmas is once again upon us. For many, it’s a time of family, food, decorations and good tidings - as the old song goes, ‘It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year’. However, it can also be a frenetic time for business owners who are trying to keep pace with the demands of the season.
The build-up, while potentially lucrative for many businesses, can be a stressful period as the rush reaches a fever pitch. It’s important you take measures to prevent the frenzy from becoming overwhelming. With that in mind, here are four ways you can ready yourself for the Christmas gridlock.
Set a Plan of Action
As the saying goes: fail to prepare, prepare to fail. There’s always plenty to do in the run-up to Christmas, so ensure you put a strategy in place to tackle the festive period. Find a time in advance of December to sit down and work out what you want to achieve over the coming weeks and what will be required to accomplish this.
Ask yourself these important questions: what are the essentials that need tending to? How much stock will leave you with a comfortable inventory? It’s a valuable exercise in surveying where your business stands, what your goals are for Christmas and identifying the means of acquiring those expectations.
Manage Your Time
Coming into this hectic time of the year, time management is absolutely critical. As the business owner, you need to ensure that you have enough time to oversee the overall direction of your company without getting bogged down in unnecessary details. By staying on top of where you delegate your time and energy, you are more likely to cope with the demands that come your way.
At the start of each day, take a few minutes to plan out your schedule, arranging tasks in order of importance and allocating adequate time for the ones at the top of the list. Delegation is also your friend here. Scratch off any tasks that are not essential and assign them to trusted employees. This hierarchical approach to time management will ensure you don’t waste hours of frustration micro-managing each area of the business – and it’ll seriously cut down on stress.
Incorporating relevant technology into your business can save you the hassle of the more mundane and time-consuming jobs. There are a host of programs and apps which can help you direct your focus in the most efficient manner, but also allow for future business growth by giving your insights into how you currently run your business.
Some programmes will automate your social media posts on multiple platforms (which can be a huge help during the festive sales period), others can track how your customers find your website and what behaviours they exhibit (determining whether any consistent patterns emerge) and yet others can help with accounting and other financial tasks. If you haven’t tried MyBusinessToolkit yet, it’s an amazing software bundle that can help you get on top of many of your most time-consuming tasks.
Remember to Unwind
Throughout the festive period, always remember to make time for yourself and retain a healthy work-life balance. Given how much attention you may need to give to your business, it’s vital that you combine work with a sufficient amount of rest and relaxation to help get you prosper (and even enjoy) the holiday season. Overworking yourself isn’t beneficial to anybody; listen to your body and free up time to not only recuperate but also to enjoy the things that make this time of the year so special. It is Christmas, after all.
Need Help with Your Business?
For Christmas and beyond, make an appointment to speak to your AIB Business Customer Advisor today.
Please be aware that all of the views expressed in this Blog are purely the personal views of the authors and commentators (including those working for AIB as members of the AIB website team or in any other capacity) and are based on their personal experiences and knowledge at the time of writing.
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Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c. is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland. Copyright Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c. 1995.