It’s a short work week with Thanksgiving this Thursday, but we all know that work still needs to get done, so today I wanted to talk about how to prepare for the long holiday weekend.
Take note of recurring events
Do you send out a weekly newsletter? Do you follow up with clients periodically? Make a list of what needs to get done each week and keep it on hand. This way you can check off various items and make sure that each task still gets accomplished before, after, or while you’re away. This will also help you stay organized on a regular basis. If you know that something needs to be done weekly, you’re more likely to stick to a schedule and be consistent with your work.
For me, this list includes posting articles on my website and social media, sending out newsletters, and following up with clients as needed.
The best way to prepare for the long holiday weekend is to start preparing for it early. If you know that you’re going to be out of the office for a specific time period, start preparing for it as soon as possible. Thanksgiving is only a few days away, so if you haven’t started preparing, don’t worry. Just take a deep breath and look at the list of what needs to be accomplished while you’re away. Start putting things into place now. Is there an email list you can put together or an extra memo you can write now for you to use when you’re away?
I start creating articles and blog posts to keep on hand a few weeks ahead of time when I find some downtime during the day. This helps to create a back stock and gives me the opportunity to keep articles on hand when I need to get something live on the website. You can also look at old articles and reuse them. This is a great way to work smarter, not harder.
We live in an era where we can automate some areas of business and it won’t make any difference. Social media posting and email marketing are simple and easy ways where you can automate to save you time and brainpower.
Once you have the content, you can automate the communication plan so it sends without a second thought. By doing this, you are ensuring consistency and giving your clients the same services without having to physically be present for it. I use Hootsuite and MailChimp to get everything automated and set up when I’m away so clients and followers don’t have a lapse in content.
You can automate posts for up to a month away, so this is a great tip to use even if you aren’t out of the office. By spending time automating communications, you can save time and put your mind to better use.
The best way to prepare for the long holiday weekend is to clearly communicate that you will be out of the office. Tell your peers and clients ahead of time the dates you will be away for the holiday so there’s no confusion, and make sure that this is marked and communicated in several locations.
No matter how many places you communicate that you’re out of the office, people will try to contact you, so it’s important to accept that and understand that as long as you’ve labeled and communicated your out of office status, there’s nothing more you can do.
A good rule of thumb is to put an away message on your email, record a voicemail which clearly states that you are out of office along with your return date, and if you have a website, you can mark your business as “closed” for a specific time period.
Organize for travel:
Thanksgiving is one of the busiest times of the year to travel. If you are traveling, make sure to look at the weather and at least think about what you’re going to pack. I understand that packing your suitcase early is hard for most people, but even thinking about what you’re going to bring and what you’ll need to pack will help you a lot. On that note, make sure you find out the dress code for thanksgiving ahead of time if you are traveling. This way, you make sure that you pack the right clothing and don’t look inappropriately dressed.
Finally, don’t forget about the option to make some of the thanksgiving meal ahead of time. We often get stuck on the idea of fresh cooked food, but there are a lot of little side dishes and extras that can be made ahead of time and reheated during dinner to save you time on the big day. Think of making cranberry sauce, desserts, and stuffing today, tomorrow, or Wednesday so that you don’t have as much to do on Thursday.
These are my simple tips for how to prepare for the long holiday weekend, but what are your secrets? Reach out and let me know with #writestyles!