Advertising
Advertising

Ask the Entrepreneurs: 8 Things Founders Should Take Care of Before Shutting Down for the Holidays

Ask the Entrepreneurs: 8 Things Founders Should Take Care of Before Shutting Down for the Holidays

Ask The Entrepreneurs is a regular series where members of the Young Entrepreneur Council are asked a single question that aims to help Lifehack readers level up their own lives, whether in a area of management, communication, business or life in general.

Here’s the question posed in this edition of Ask The Entrepreneurs:

What is one thing entrepreneurs forget to automate, systemize, or build processes around before they shut down for holidays?

1. Finances

Kelly Azevedo

    Before you take off, ensure that the finances of your business are handled, including paying employees, accepting automated payments from clients, handing pay failures and paying your own invoices. By automating, you won’t return to an empty bank account and overdue bills.
    Kelly Azevedo, She’s Got Systems

    Advertising

    2. Time Management

    Grant Gordon

      Entrepreneurs and business owners don’t plan on not being busy. Holidays are meant for friends and family, and although we need to see business boom, you can still plan to focus on your social time without the distractions of a phone, tablet or laptop. Plan your days to be carefree, and “budget” time to check in with work — not the other way around.
      Grant Gordon, Solomon Consulting Group

      3. Social Media Posts

      Advertising

      Ronnie Castro

        Using a message scheduling tool such as HootSuite is great for planning tweets and other social media posts to hit over the holidays, so you don’t have to. You can rest easy knowing that your followers will automatically continue to get consistent updates and messages from your company during your down time.
        Ronnie Castro, Porch

        4. Holiday Shipping and Returns

        Brett Farmiloe

          Clearly communicating holiday shipping and return information before shutting down is crucial to customer conversions and satisfaction. You can do this in several ways. Your can use language such as, “final day to order to receive by Christmas” on product descriptions and shipping pages. You can also set up an email autoresponder for the emails typically associated with customer questions.
          Brett Farmiloe, Internet Marketing Company

          5. Customer Support

          Advertising

          Thursday-Bram 2

            You can’t assume that your customers aren’t working just because you’ve taken off for the holidays. You can’t even assume that your customers celebrate the same holidays that you do. So make sure your customers can at least get a basic level of assistance while you’re away. Even writing up fixes for the most common problems they might encounter is a step in the right direction.
            Thursday Bram, Hyper Modern Consulting

            6. Proper Notifications

            Andy Karuza

              Make sure you clearly communicate to people that you’ll be out of office, whether it’s through an email autoresponder or a message you post on your Facebook page. As long as you take the due diligence to announce your impending shut down, your customers and partners will be mostly satisfied with their inability to reach you.
              Andy Karuza, Brandbuddee

              Advertising

              7. Signed Contracts

              russ oja

                Many companies have a new budget starting in January of each year, which means you should be rather proactive with closing deals in November and December before everybody leaves the office and comes back at the start of the year. Proactive sales in the last few months of the year will help you launch big at the start of the new year.
                Russ Oja, Seattle Windows and Construction, LLC

                8. Team Vacation Tracking

                Nanxi Liu

                  Because our teammates have different dates they are taking off during the holidays, we wanted to be respectful of everyone’s days off. So, we had everyone update the company calendar with the dates they will be available and unavailable during the holidays.
                  Nanxi Liu, Enplug

                  More by this author

                  9 No-Brainer Ways to Track Employee Time Ask the Entrepreneurs: 12 Things Entrepreneurs Should Stop Doing Ask the Entrepreneurs: 9 Best Note Taking Tools Ask the Entrepreneurs: 12 Tips for Mastering Public Speaking Ask the Entrepreneurs: 9 Tasks You Should be Outsourcing

                  Trending in Productivity

                  1 How to Set Realistic Short Term Goals for a Successful Life 2 How to Start Setting Strategic Goals for a Successful Life 3 Why Is Behavior Change So Hard? Science Explains It 4 6 Ways to Finish Strong (When Your Momentum Is Low) 5 10 Good Habits to Have in Life to Be More Successful

                  Read Next

                  Advertising
                  Advertising
                  Advertising

                  Last Updated on November 16, 2020

                  10 Good Habits to Have in Life to Be More Successful

                  10 Good Habits to Have in Life to Be More Successful

                  Habits are behaviors and patterns that you showcase by default. Many good habits to have will enable you to carry out crucial activities like taking a shower, brushing your teeth, and getting ready for work. 

                  Interestingly, you follow this routine every day without thinking twice. Your unconscious daily habits create room for your brain to perform more advanced activities like problem-solving and choosing what book to read.

                  Everyone has habits, and several of those habits are activated every day. I would classify them into three groups:

                  • Habits that you hardly notice as they have become a major part of your life, such as brushing teeth or getting dressed.
                  • Good habits to have to be more successful, like eating healthy, exercising, and reading books.
                  • Habits that are harmful, like procrastinating, smoking, or overeating.

                  Good habits are fundamental to becoming successful in life. Yet, as significant as habits are, some lack the knowledge of their capabilities.

                  While much of the emphasis falls on bad habits to break, it’s just as important to focus on good habits to have and cultivate in your daily routine.

                  Here, we’ll talk about 10 good habits to have to be more successful in life.

                  1. Begin Your Day with Meditation

                  I recommend mindful meditation early in the morning. This practice helps you to place yourself in the present moment. Consequently, it enables you to be mindful of challenging situations during the day.

                  Different stressors may trigger as you go through the day; meditation helps you to remain calm before taking on the challenges.

                  Personally, it helps me to devise strategies and think about ideas. Meditation is a good habit to have if you want to be connected to what’s significant in your life.

                  2. Be Grateful for What You Have

                  It’s not uncommon to waste time thinking of what’s not enough. You become immersed in those daunting challenges. However, challenges justify the presence of hope. The only strategy you have to stop focusing on your problems is to focus on what you have.

                  Advertising

                  Gratitude is a time-tested pathway to success, health, and happiness. It redirects your focus to what you have from what you lack. Try writing a list of things you’re grateful for each day in a gratitude journal, or make it a habit to say one thing you’re grateful for when you sit down to dinner with your family.

                  3. Smile

                  Can you pause and smile before you continue reading this?

                  Now, here is what just happened based on research conducted by the Association for Psychological Science; you set a pace for living a happier life when you smile. A genuine smile, or what’s called a Duchenne smile, is a good habit to have if you want to find spiritual, emotional, and mental peace of mind.[1]

                  Smiling induces the release of molecules that function towards fighting stress. The physiological state of your body determines the state of your mind. When you slouch or frown, your mind takes cues relating to unhappiness and depression. However, once you adjust yourself by putting on a smile, you begin to feel a new level of excitement and vibrancy.

                  4. Start Your Day With a Healthy Breakfast

                  Starting your day with a healthy breakfast is a good habit to have and forms a crucial part of your life. Nevertheless, about 31 million Americans skip their breakfast each day.[2]

                  If you are fed up hearing that breakfast is a crucial component of your day, you are only fighting the truth. If you want to become more successful, you need to “break your fast” with healthy foods every morning.

                  This habit is not difficult to form if you usually rush out the door every single morning. You can wake up earlier to fix yourself a meal so you don’t break down during the day.

                  Get inspired by these 20 Healthy Breakfast Choices That Will Save You Time.

                  5. Exercise Daily

                  One of the good habits to have is to exercise your body and muscles on a daily basis. You don’t have to run a marathon or lift tons of weights. You only need to engage in activities that oxygenate your blood and inject endorphins in your body, trying to squeeze in at least 15 minutes every day.

                  Jack Dorsey, the CEO of Twitter, classified exercise as a good habit to maximize his already jam-packed schedule.[3] He said:

                  Advertising

                  “I wake up by 5, meditate for 30 minutes, seven-minute workout times three, make coffee, and check-in.”

                  He said on Product Hunt that he follows this routine every day as it gives him a steady-state that empowers him to be more productive.

                  6. Manage Your Time

                  Another good habit is the act of managing your time effectively. This goes a long way toward impacting your achievement.

                  Time management is what separates the successful from the rest of the world as we all possess the same amount of time. How you leverage time determines your potential to succeed in life[4].

                  Good habits to have: Time management tips

                    So how do you manage your time effectively?

                    Here’s Jack Dorsey’s recommendation in one of the Techonomy events:

                    “I accomplish effective time management by theming my days and practicing self-discipline. These themes help me handle distractions and interactions. If a request or task does not align with the theme for that day, I don’t do it. This sets a cadence for everyone in the company to deliver and evaluate their progress”.

                    And this is Dorsey’s weekly theme layout:[5]

                    • Monday – Management
                    • Tuesday – Product
                    • Wednesday – Marketing and growth
                    • Thursdays – Developers and partnerships
                    • Fridays – Culture and recruiting
                    • Saturdays – Taking off
                    • Sundays – Reflection, feedback, strategy, and preparing for Monday

                    No wonder he was able to run two companies when others were struggling with one job.

                    Advertising

                    7. Set Daily Goals With Intentions

                    Everyone has goals, whether they relate to business or personal life. The truth is, we’re all tending towards a particular direction. Nevertheless, while long-term goals can offer you direction, it’s your daily goals that help you develop short-term goals that are essential for your success.

                    Long-term goals may not give you the motivation you need to keep on, but when you implement your short-term milestones daily, you become fired up, and you can overcome the challenges that come with taking on bigger tasks.

                    Here’s the main truth: Successful people don’t set goals without establishing their intentions. According to Jennifer Cohen of Forbes,[6]

                    “What helps you to achieve your desired expectation is ensuring intentions accompany your daily goals.”

                    8. Seek Inspiration

                    It is usually difficult to be inspired for a considerable length of time. Sometimes, you become discouraged and feel like giving up on your goals when things are not working out as intended.

                    A practical approach to stay on top of the situation is to inspire yourself each day. When you wake up in the morning (after meditation), watch some motivational videos, and let the story of great leaders inspire you.

                    Establish what Anthony Robbins called the “hour of power.” Determine how many minutes you spend, but make it count. Inspiration is the fuel for achievement because when you can conceive it in your mind, you can accomplish it.

                    Michal Solowow, an investor and the founder of Mitex, puts it this way[7]:

                    “The problems I encounter in everyday life motivate me to find solutions. This is a self-propelling mechanism. Becoming a billionaire was never a motivating factor.”

                    9. Save Steadily, Invest With All Prudence

                    I can’t exhaust the good habits to have without talking about saving and investing. Most times, you overlook the significance of saving for the future when you are living in your present moment. According to CNBC, a $1000 emergency will propel several Americans into debt.[8]

                    Advertising

                    However, it is not enough to save, and you must invest your funds and be wise with them. If you pay attention to this now, you will set yourself up for a life of success in the future. Ensure you save at least six months in your emergency account so you can be prepared for any future emergency.

                    If you’re looking for a simple way to save money, check out the following video:

                    10. Budget and Track Your Spending

                    Benjamin Franklin warned of taking the precaution of little expenses. He said:

                    “A small leak sinks a great ship.”

                    It is easy to discard little expenses, but the truth is they always add up. This happens when you fail to budget.

                    Budgeting is a good habit to have, and it can impact your financial life significantly. The money you spend on extravagant lifestyles can be saved and invested in your future instead.

                    The Bottom Line

                    Endeavor to start developing good habits to have to become more successful as you journey through life. The quicker you cultivate them, the faster you will achieve your goals.

                    More About Cultivating Good Habits

                    Featured photo credit: Andrijana Bozic via unsplash.com

                    Reference

                    Read Next