In Hong Kong we have anywhere between 14-16 public holidays each year, and sometimes they work to make an extra long weekend, and who doesn’t like to take advantage of those to get away. We also have Summer holidays where kids are off school between 6 and 8 weeks. But holidays and business, do the mix? What do you do with your business while you’re off deck, particularly if you are the business?
There are a number of options open to you, including ceasing trade while you’re away:
1. You can basically hang up your ‘Closed… back in 5 days’ sign and desperately hope that the trade that passes you by will wait for your reply when you are open. If you’re taking internet orders, be sure to let your customers know that delivery is going to be delayed until your return, and that customer enquiries will be dealt with at a later date.
Everyone needs a break, but just shutting up shop for a period, unless it’s absolutely necessary, just doesn’t look good, and certainly isn’t good for your business.
2. If you have a trusted friend or relative to care for your business, this is a better option. To keep your business running at seventy or eighty percent in your absence is surely a better alternative than putting business on hold. Be clear and concise with your instructions, and be sure there are clear boundaries about which decisions are theirs to make.
3. Another alternative is to hire a professional to care for your business. If you are being supported by us on a regular basis, we already know your business, and you know that things will be taken care of exactly to your specifications. It is essential, in this case, to have a current, fully updated Standard Operating Procedure outlining any key processes. We often manage our client’s businesses when they go away. Having a professional in place will give you the peace of mind to fully relax and enjoy your break, knowing your business is being well cared for in your absence.
Whichever your choice is, make sure you have an out of office message on your email, providing clear instructions on who to contact, and when you’ll be back online. Happy Holidays!