One of the best things about being an entrepreneur is having the freedom to choose your own schedule and work on your own terms. Often, that’s easier said than done, though.
In reality, a lot of female business owners feel that if they would take some time off, their clients would suffer and their company comes to a standstill while they’re away. They believe that it’s either one or the other: work OR family time, not both.
But we think that you can have your cake AND eat it too! It’s absolutely possible to travel with your family and enjoy a great holiday while your business is not only surviving but thriving.
Completely shutting yourself off from your business for a week or two might not be an option … and that’s ok. We’ve got the right tips for you on how you can take your business on the road so you can be productive and still enjoy some well-deserved time off.
How to prepare the right way
Preparation is everything. When you follow our steps, you’ll be able to turn on your out-of-office auto-responder with a peace of mind, knowing that everything important has been taken care of.
Take your business online
This should be priority number one! Your suitcase should be reserved for cute dresses and not folders of paperwork. Luckily, easy-to-use and even free tools exist to have all your files online and accessible from anywhere. Try out Google Drive or Dropbox. You can easily share files with your whole team, and everybody will have access to the latest version.
When your whole business is online, you’ll need internet access at your destination. Check beforehand if your hotel, holiday park, or AirBnB offers free wifi. You could even pack your own portable wifi to ensure you’re always staying online.
As a business owner who has built her empire from scratch, it can be challenging to let go of certain tasks. Everything seems critical, but in reality it’s perfectly fine to let go of certain duties. A holiday can be a great way to try out if your staff are ready to take on more important tasks. Beforehand, you could record short instruction videos with a tool like Loom.
Remember that your employees need to feel empowered to make their own decisions within certain limits during this time. If they have to get in touch with you every time to ask for permission to do something, you won’t have a quiet minute to yourself, and the whole purpose is defeated. Sometimes, that also means that they might decide differently than you would have. That’s ok! Give them the freedom to make the call, and they’ll have great learning opportunities.
Automate your business
To take it even a step further, you can automate as many parts of your business as possible, so they run on auto-pilot while you’re playing with the kids and/or sipping cocktails at the pool. We’ve written a whole series of articles to illustrate how you can automagically generate new leads, nurture them into clients, and nail the customer experience to get referrals and upsells. If you’re ready to take that next step in your business, schedule a call with us and we can get you set up.
Choose the right destination and accommodation
It’s tempting to choose the cheapest destination and most affordable accommodation so that you can stay away longer. However, this will heavily impact how you can get your work done. When you have small kids, it might be worth paying that bit extra to stay in a hotel or family type park with kids activities all right there on premises. This will save you having to pack up and take them out all day every day and spend even more money on activities and food.
Plan your itinerary
Trying to figure out what to do every morning can add unnecessary stress. Instead, you could plan out your activities and a rough itinerary upfront. Why not get the whole family involved in this process? Research what there’s to do at your destination and discuss together how everybody wants to spend their time.
That way, you could already block off some time for yourself to get work done while also making sure that you can spend enough time with the family. This sets the right expectations for everyone. Your loved ones will know upfront that you don’t want to be disturbed during certain times, but they can be sure that you’ll be free later for them.
What to do while you’re away
Are you all prepared and ready to go? Great! Now, let’s make sure that you get the most out of your holiday. Follow our tips for a stress-free trip that might even lead to some new insights and customers.
Leverage technology to your advantage
Technology is your friend and can make working on the road so much easier. Why not record your client meetings (if you absolutely need to have them while you’re away) with a tool like Zoom? You won’t have to take notes right away and got it all recorded to go back to when needed. No need to rely on your memory. You can also quickly record tasks or instructions for your staff instead of having to be in front of a laptop and emailing them. Imagine walking on the beach and recording a short voice clip at the same time.
This might require that you get a little creative, try something new, and get away from your usual way of working. But who knows … you might even discover more effective ways of doing things that you can then integrate into your typical processes.
Find a fresh perspective
Removing yourself from your usual environment, like your office, house, or apartment, helps to get a new outlook on your business and life. Use the fresh air and time away to have some ‘creative’ time to think about the bigger picture. Where do you want yourself, the business, and your family to be in 1 or 5 years?
You might even come up with new ideas for your business. We’re sure that you’ll be more imaginative when you’re in a relaxed environment and having fun, compared to the day to day mundane grindstone between washing uniforms and doing the dishes.
You could even involve the whole family in this process. Schedule a little open discussion around your family and life goals over wine and a cheese platter and get everyone involved. It could be eye-opening to hear everybody else’s thoughts and help the family bond together.
The great thing about holiday parks and hotels is that it’s so easy to meet new people. Strike up a conversation with your new neighbours and talk about your business (Pro tip: Always have some business cards on hand). You never know who you meet. They might need your services, or perhaps they know someone who does, and you could end up with a few new leads.
Share the fun
The time that business owners have to be always serious and professional is long over. Your clients like to get to know you personally and know that even you need some time off. Build a connection by sharing what you’re up to during your holidays. It’s the perfect opportunity to increase your social media activity and share some happy snaps of your family having fun. That’ll make you much more relatable and human.
When you’re travelling with your family and working, every second of your day counts. It might feel scary to pass on an opportunity or to ask a client for a later delivery date, but you have to be extremely protective of your time. Resist the temptation to take on anything new other than the things you’d already planned to do while you’re away. Saying no is not the end of the world. And more often than not, people are very understanding that you are taking some time off.
Where will your next trip take you?
After reading so much about holidays, you must be itching to plan your next trip. We can’t stress enough how important it is to take some time off. Even if it seems impossible and you’re buried in work, do it! Often, roadblocks to business growth manifest in the mind of the owner because they’re stuck in the daily grind. You’re so close to everything that you can’t see the forest for the trees.
With recharged batteries and a fresh perspective, you’ll be ready to take your business to the next level. And we’re here to help you with that. Imagine you could have a tailored step-by-step strategy that’ll include the exact steps and right tools to growing and automating your business. With that in place, you could plan even more exciting trips and time with your family.
Because you’re already here and reading this, we have a pretty good feeling that you’re ready to take action and transform your business. And for that reason, we’d like to invite you to join us for a FREE Business Automation Roadmap Call. Simply click the button below to secure your call, and we can get you on the way to more clients and revenue.