Taking holidays as a business owner

We are all so very busy running our businesses, we look after our employees, but how many of us forget to look after ourselves! Maybe time to take a little break, and here’s a few tips to help you get away!

We always recommend to our clients to make sure that their people are taking their holidays – but how many of us remember to do this ourselves! Taking time away from your business to refresh and decompress is so important, but too many entrepreneurs find it difficult to do so. In that spirit, we would like to share some tips for taking time away from your business. 

1. Conduct a Trial Run!

Let the person who will be in charge while you’re away practice while you’re still around. Do this first on a typical slow day for the business, then again on a more rigorous day. And, if you have a limited customer base, let them know up-front about your planned vacation and communicate your operational plan that will be in place while you are out. It’s important that everyone, especially your customers, are comfortable with you being away!

2. Leave Work at Work

Being dedicated to your career often means working when duty calls. However, it's crucial to take time away, turn off the email notifications and step away from your technology. Before vacation, create an efficient schedule, compartmentalize your tasks and set up a back-up plan for how problems will be solved in your absence. The week prior to your time off, ensure that you accomplish what must be done and then, leave your work at work and enjoy the (much deserved) mental break.

3. Add a Week

Just in your diary, try to avoid having meetings scheduled a few days before and after your holiday, tacking on a few days to the start and end of your vacation is a great way to manage your time away, firstly in case of business fires or travel emergencies, but secondly you can keep up by working from home for those last minute requests and get back up to speed at home before clocking back into the office. 

4. Don't Hide Your Vacation

Many business owners are embarrassed to say that they're taking a vacation. But, if you don't tell your clients, then they will reach out to you and you'll feel compelled to answer every email, text and phone call. Tell your clients a couple weeks before your trip and try to finalize any outstanding tasks. They have the rest of the team at their disposal, assure them that they are in good hands. Prepare your team by having a meeting before you leave and ensure that they are on the same page. 


5. Build a Strong Team

The key is to have a strong team in place that you can count on when you are away. It is difficult to take a vacation if you don’t trust your team to handle the job. Instil confidence in your managers to make a decision without holding their hand. Ensure that your team is well-equipped to handle anything that is thrown their way.


6 Reasonable Staff Expectations

Every small business owner needs some time away, but the stress of being on vacation can be even more taxing than the daily management of the company.

To get your staff ready, set reasonable expectations for your absence. No one is going to be able to fully cover for you, so only delegate the most critical details and let your staff keep their routines consistent. The reasonable expectations extend to you as well; acknowledge that small things might get missed and accept it, rather than dwell.


7. Stop Doing What You Hate

Identify the top 3 tasks you HATE doing within your business and find a way to either remove the need for those tasks or outsource them to someone else. Not only will it free up more of your time (making it easier to take time off for vacation), but tasks you detest drain you of more than just time. Removing them will help you find more of the fun and fulfilment within your business. Forgot what those feel like? Get rid of some of those nasty tasks and rediscover the joys of entrepreneurship.

Hopefully these tips will help you take a break, even if just a few days and re-charge your batteries

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