We’re well into the early days of spring, and already, we’re looking forward to the summer. Many small businesses have mixed feelings about this season. Whether sales are up or down, there are always unique considerations that must be made. Changes in staff scheduling, specific stock orders, and variable weather are only a few examples of what many owners must consider when planning for summertime operations.
Thanks to the particular nature of this spring so far, planning for the months ahead might seem like trying to peer into a crystal ball. However, this is also a unique opportunity to think creatively and use the time you have now to your advantage. We’ve rounded up the five best tips to help you prepare your small business for summer.
1. Plan Ahead as Much as Possible
Given the current atmosphere, planning ahead with much certainty can be challenging, but there are some things that you can still identify now. Will staff have any days that they absolutely require off, like a birthday or holiday? When are bills due? Are there any contracts to be renegotiated, and if so, when is the cutoff date for the current arrangement?
Mark all of this down on your calendar – and then plan accordingly. Part of this is a decision and a personal commitment not to accept a summer slowdown. The landscape might look different in the short term, but if you’re unable to operate as you usually do, take advantage of the opportunity and focus on the items that normally get shoved aside.
2. Welcome New Clients
If things slow down for you in the summer, chances are good that your competitors are in the same shape – so don’t do what they do. Instead of taking it easy, focus on getting new clients. Does your website function well as a sales tool? How does your business appear to online shoppers? Do you have an active social media presence, and if so, what are you doing to grow it?
Buckle down and put together a plan to improve what you’ve got. While your competitors are resting or preoccupied with other things, take the opportunity to actively market your business. You’ll gain a larger reach than you would regularly, since your competitors aren’t advertising as heavily, and you might just be able to claim a few new clients before they can.
3. Declutter Your Workspace & Tackle Those Renovations
Have you been putting off repainting the main office because of constant foot traffic and other demands? Now’s the time to go ahead and tackle the small projects you’ve been wanting to do to keep the workspace fresh and clean.
In the same vein, whether summer is usually a slow or busy season for your industry, it always brings unique complications. Clear away the buildup, whether that’s old inventory or finally getting rid of customer records that haven’t been touched for the past twenty years. If you do come across documents that should be discarded, a purge shredding service will be able to securely cross-cut and recycle your items – and usually in under thirty minutes.
4. Check to Make Sure Everything Works as it Should
No one wants to try and deal with a broken AC unit in the middle of summer heat, so don’t wait until then to diagnose the issue. Make sure your unit has been clean and properly serviced, and you’ll reduce the chances of boxing yourself into needing repairs when it’s harder to get them. Scheduling early brings several other benefits, too. If you go ahead and make an appointment to have your AC or your plumbing inspected at a certain point, you might be able to arrange a month-by-month payment plan, instead of having to come up with a lump sum all at once.
5. Are You Prepared for the Unexpected?
Even the best-laid plans can be thrown completely off track by unexpected weather or accidents. Before summer arrives, make sure that you have contingency plans in place for anything that your region frequently experiences. If your power goes out for several hours – or several days – do you have a generator you can use to continue daily operations, or would you be able to cope without? If the front window breaks, or if there’s damage from a burst pipe, will your insurance cover it, or will you need to allocate funds to fix it?
Now is the time to ask all these questions, so that when the unexpected occurs, all you have to do is follow the plan you already established.
For more information on document destruction or our one-time purge shredding services, give us a call at (225) 751-8535. You can also send us an online message.