Summertime, and business is …?

Dali-Persistence-of-TimeEvery business, every industry has high and low periods; times when you can hardly keep up, and times when you can hardly find something to do. Which are you in right now?

When business is booming, sometimes you can easily get overwhelmed. There are too many customers needing something from you, and not enough hours in the day to get it all done. Do you hire extra help, taking precious time away from serving your customers to train them? What will you do with the new staff once things slow down again?

When business is slow, you start looking at ways to cut expenses. Reduce staff, reduce hours, put off maintenance. Seems like it makes sense, right? After all, there is less money coming in, right?

What if I told you that you had it backwards?

When times are slow, that is the time you should be making plans for the busy season. You have time to breathe, think, look ahead. If you are only reactionary to your current demands, you’ll never be ahead of the game.

Training new staff takes time. When your slow, you have time to train them, and time for them to learn. Learning takes time, too.

Maintenance gets in the way of your productivity. The alternative is when something breaks, everything is forced to stop.  Upgrade your systems when you are using them the least, weather that be computers, machinery, HVAC systems, vehicles.  If you are not using everything, all of the time, it’s easier to plan when something will be out of use for a while.

Do you have dreams of growing your business? When things are slow, you have time to really look ahead, investigate your options and put plans into action. Plan for what your staff will be doing, what their roles will be, and if you need to hire new staff. Look at last year’s numbers, month by month. When were you busiest?

Advertising campaigns? Product promotions? Incentives? All of these need lead time to get the pieces in place. The best campaign is the coordinated one. A campaign that is hastily thrown together has less of an impact on it’s audience than one that is targeted and planned.

Use your down time to your advantage. Slow periods are not something to be endured.Consider it an opportunity to invest in your business

About Reba Winstead

Reba Winstead is the blogger and social media manager at CountyWebsite.com, and the editor of several community news websites through CountyWebsite.com.

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