‘Tis the season to be decking the halls, wrapping (and unwrapping) gifts, and preparing for a prosperous new year. In times past, many home inspectors reported that they experienced a slower period during the winter months, and if the holidays are already times of stress for many, how can small business owners like home inspectors stay on top during the season to be merry and bright — and even (dare we suggest it?) take a well-deserved vacation?
Get the most out of the holiday season
In a recent survey, more than three quarters of small business owners claimed to have given up their holiday in order to keep their company moving. But there’s no need to be overwhelmed by the dual needs to take care of your home inspection business as well as your family. There’s a reason this is referred to as the most wonderful time of the year, and you deserve to rejoice in it, too. You’ve got big things coming soon – the post-holiday season is expected to bounce back at a far higher rate than it did last year. The key is to make sure you’re fully prepared in advance of the holidays so that you’re prepared for whatever the season may bring.
Mark the holiday on your calendar
Of course you know the date by heart, but holidays have a way of sneaking up on us. Record the holiday on your calendar and be sure to set any time off you want to be taking well in advance, so that your vacation plans and family time get to be enjoyed uninterrupted.
Determine who’ll be in charge
If you run a multi-inspector firm, you may have the luxury of giving someone else your typical responsibilities for a period of time so that you can enjoy more of the holiday season. Figure out who that’s going to be, and train them early so that you don’t have to worry about things getting done while you’re taking a break. This can even improve your company, as your employees can be empowered by your trust.
If it’s just you, that’s okay, too! Set up an away message for your email and your voicemail so that customers know when you won’t be able to be reached – and when you’ll be able to get back in touch with them.
Schedule your social media posts
One of the great things about modern social media tools, like Facebook, is that you can schedule your posts. Plan out enough posts to cover your business page over the holidays and schedule them to go live at the most advantageous times well in advance. You might even want to schedule a post or two to run after you get back, so that you don’t have to worry about them right away.
Send emails or cards to your contacts
Now is the perfect time to reach out to your customers and realtors with a year-end email or card. This sort of customer service is an ideal way to keep yourself and your services top of mind and to help yourself get more business. It’s advisable to send non-denominational well wishes, and you may wish to include a coupon for future services or an incentive for referrals.
Reorganize and reevaluate
Even if you’re staying home for the holidays, you can switch things up by clearing your head and giving yourself a new view. Delete old emails, clean up clutter, maybe even shift your office space around – anything you can do to ensure that you’ll be starting the new year feeling more together and ready to take on new goals.
Let in the holiday spirit – along with inspiration
Sometimes, a break is exactly what you need. You don’t have to go so far as to turn off your cell phone and steer clear of your email… but that might help! Let yourself recharge, and you might find that you gain valuable perspective and get ideas to launch yourself into the next year simply by taking your mind off of your home inspection business long enough to embrace the holiday season – and those closest to you.