Forget the yule tide! There’s no time to enjoy the holidays when you own a business. At least, that’s what business owners proclaim as the holidays bear down and time moves faster than ever.
Managing work-life balance during the last few months of the year is stressful. But it’s completely possible to run your own business successfully AND enjoy all the holiday gatherings your heart can stand.
Here are five ideas that will help you get the most out of the holidays while running a business. No booze required.
Be charitable with your time and talents.
Small and large businesses (and everything in between) need the support of their local communities to be successful. On top of that, it feels just plain good to help those in need.
There’s no better way to gain that support than being active in your community, but it can be tough to squeeze in charitable acts during the holiday madness. Here are some ways to help your community without burning out during the holidays:
- Participate in a local food drive.
- Set up a collection jar for the charity of your choice and ask employees (or customers) to donate.
- Hold a contest amongst employees and, instead of prizes, offer money toward a charity of the winner’s choosing.
- Offer your skills to someone in need. Nonprofits are often on the hunt for industry leaders who are willing to perform tasks gratis. Don’t have time to physically attend? There are virtual opportunities, too. A site like VolunteerMatch will help you find the right place to donate your time and talents.
Have a storefront or an office space? Decorate!
Celebrating Hanukkah? Kwanzaa? Christmas? Festivus? Break out the lights and the silly paper decorations and saturate your business in holiday spirit. Oh! Don’t forget the music. Playlists abound on Spotify. My fave: The Holiday Soul Party Playlist.
Practice daily gratitude.
It seems too good to be true, but consistently practicing gratitude has the ability to make you a stronger leader, a more impactful community member and can even reduce stress. It’s science, folks.
Need some inspiration? These 37 quotes about the impact gratitude is sure
to spur you into action.
Stop answering your business phone.
The Economist reported that 90 percent of businesses cited outsourcing as crucial to their growth and that it can increase productivity. Outsourcing time consuming tasks is a huge cost savings and ramps up productivity by 10 to 100-fold. One of the biggest time-sucks in your business: the phone.
It’s possible to offer great customer service, answer all calls and be more productive without hiring an in-house receptionist. A live answering service like PATLive gives you 24/7/365 coverage on your phones that is completely budget-friendly.
Stick to a strict schedule.
You and your employees have a lot going on in the time leading up to the holidays. Between parties with friends, children’s school events and gatherings with family, the month of December gets booked up quickly. Avoid keeping employees (and yourself) from obligations by sticking to a schedule that works for everyone.
Need a little help managing tasks and keeping your team on track? Use a free online task manager to make sure things run as smoothly as possible. Slack is free to small teams and includes up to 10 integrations. We love Trello for content management and Todoist is super robust and uses gamification to make completing tasks even more fun.
Owning a business is tough, and this can be exasperated during the holiday season. Do more for others. Stick to the obligations that bring you joy. And outsource the tasks you don’t have time to do.
Remember that, while it’s good to be successful, it’s more important to ensure you and your employees get through the season in good spirits and ready to face a new year.
What are your tricks for work-life balance during the holiday season? Please share with us in the comments!