How to maintain business focus over the summer – professional pointers
With Phil McCabe of the Federation of Small Businesses
For business owners as well as staff, summer can bring the temptation to slip into clock-watching, dreaming about holidays and days on the beach instead of focusing on the work in hand, explains Phil McCabe, development manager of the Federation of Small Businesses in Merseyside, West Cheshire and Wigan. But it is more than possible to keep on top of the seasonal slowdown by following his expert advice:
It is important to lead by example. Nothing frustrates employees more than their boss disappearing into the sun just as a new contract comes in. Time your own holidays carefully – avoid leaving your staff in the lurch and you will reap the rewards. You should, of course, ensure you have a proper rota to allow yourself and staff to take time off to recharge the batteries, keeping everyone motivated without any damaging loss in productivity.
See the slowdown as an opportunity. Self-employed people can take advantage of any competitors’ inclinations to put their feet up. Get out there, network and win business while others are taking it easy.
Summer might not always be the right time to complete projects but it can be a period in which you are geared up to successfully bid for contracts. You can fill out PQQ forms just as easily in the garden as in your office, as long as you maintain a dedicated workspace. A word of warning though, if you are easily distracted it might be better to shut the door to keep the sights and sounds of summer out.
The key is planning. This is always important but, in the summer when the workload can be slower and meetings and conference calls aren’t happening as readily, you can benefit from planning out what you need to do, and who you need to meet, before hitting the road to get ahead and grow your business. It really can make all the difference.