3 Tips For The Year-End Rush
It’s no secret that for most businesses, the end-of-year period is the busiest time in the calendar. Even if yours is not a retail or hospitality business, there will be some businesses that rely on your products or services and that are either retail, hospitality, or suppliers to those businesses. To make a long story short, there are few businesses of any kind that don’t look towards December as Crunch Time. Indeed, the starting gun is typically fired earlier than the beginning of December, as the lead-up to Black Friday has become more and more pivotal with every passing year.
With pressure elevated by the demands of the season, every decision will take on an extra element of jeopardy, and if your business is going to enter a period of crisis, it’s more likely to come at this time of year. Supply chain issues, employee shortages and product faults are never fun to deal with, but if they strike at this time of year they can be all the more damaging. And so it is important to have as many arrows in your quiver as possible to fight this battle. The tips below can help you come through it in better shape.
Hire outside help for crucial duties
You’ll likely do more business in the lead-up to the holiday period than you do in any comparable spell throughout the year. Your takings will be increased – but so, too, will your outgoings, and you can’t afford to make any slip-ups when it comes to financial decisions. Smaller businesses can’t have a permanent financial officer on the payroll, but in more demanding times of the year, fractional CFO services can be indispensable. Further to that, you’d be well advised to add extra security in a spell where the customer to staff ratio becomes far more unbalanced than at other times of year.
Plan for inclement weather
Although the weather itself is getting harder to predict, there can be near-certainty that as we head into the heart of winter there will be more extreme weather. This can prevent customers with access issues from making trips out, so be ready to beef up any door-to-door delivery services you may have, or to start one if you don’t have it already. It’s simpler for you to source a vehicle capable of cutting it through the snow, rain and high winds than to expect dozens of customers to do likewise – and those who are helped by your flexible service will remember you beyond the season.
Lean on your versatility
You can only hire so many staff even on a seasonal basis, and can only accommodate so many of them at any one time, so it’s ideal to have a skills bank of staff who can fulfil duties beyond their everyday job description. A versatile workforce is a flexible workforce, and that’s all the more important at this time of year. If your customer service workers can also work the tills, be ready to reallocate them when the lines start to get longer – and so on. It pays to know what additional skills your employees have at any time. You literally never know when it might be useful to have a security guard who can also speak Portuguese, so get all staff to fill out a form volunteering any skills that might be useful.
The closing weeks of the year can make or break a business, so being ready for the mayhem of the season is fundamental to your business’s wellbeing. Be prepared, and it could be a very Happy Christmas for you.
Categories: Outside Contributors
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