While the holidays are often a joyful time of the year when friends and family come together to celebrate, for business owners, the holidays can often bring a different kind of stress. That’s why it’s never too early to start prepping for the holiday rush. In fact, the sooner you start, the better prepared you’ll be to take advantage of the holiday boom.
The best way to manage seasonal stress is to keep a holiday checklist of things you need to accomplish before the season comes, so start planning now! Courtesy of The City Mix, here are some key things business owners should include in their holiday checklist so that they can assure themselves they have taken care of everything as early as possible.
If you haven’t already, start by taking the time to research what differences the holiday season can offer your business. For instance, insurance companies experience one of the busiest times of the year during this time. Sales and retail also experience an increasing rush of people as the holidays approach. Take the time to plan out how you will handle your business. If you have been looking to move your business into e-commerce but haven’t quite made the push yet, this could be the perfect time to take your first steps. If you add a dropshipping component to your business, you can sell various goods without having to maintain an in-house inventory.
Most businesses experience some change in their rhythms during the holidays, with retail in particular experiencing a significant onslaught of customers. If the pace of your business typically ramps up in the fall as consumers start to shop for the holidays, you may want to hire temporary seasonal help. Temporary assistants can help with routine maintenance of your space, stocking, sales, customer service, and anything else that requires an additional set of hands in the busy season.
Temporary help should still be approached like full-time help in that you should still go through a full interview process. If you have gone a while without interviewing potential new hires, you should do a little research beforehand to know what kinds of questions to ask and how to handle interviewing etiquette. Not only will interviewing your temporary hires help ensure that they will be able to efficiently and effectively handle the holiday workload, it may even lead to you finding the ideal full-time employee after the season is completed. For this reason, treat your temporary employees just as you would anybody else who works for you.
As you hire more employees, you may want to invest in all-in-one accounting software that does everything from employee time tracking to payroll management to real-time reporting. When you use the right software, you’ll be able to easily manage your employees while keeping accurate records, which will be especially beneficial come tax time.
Many people enjoy seeing storefront businesses decked out for the holidays. While you may not want to go overboard with lights, inflatable Santas, and gaudy decorations, do not feel like you have to be overly conservative. Show off your holiday spirit and see how your customers’ moods are changed when they walk into your store humming their favorite holiday tune. To strike the perfect balance of festive and tasteful decorations, try hanging up oversized decor, like giant snowflakes and large ornaments. Large decorations will catch the light while adding color to your space, making your business the warm and inviting atmosphere of home. And keep in mind that if you purchase decorations before the holiday season, you may be able to save substantially.
It’s never too early to make sure your business is properly prepared for the holidays. Know how the holidays will affect your business, and hire additional people to help out if you think you can use an extra pair of hands. Start prepping now so that you can make this holiday season a very profitable one for your business.
The City Mix is a business coaching and technology software development company with offices in North Aurora, IL and future expansion into Chicago.