Can you take a vacation when you’re the boss?
We’re all trying to reach that perfect nirvana where our life and our work are in perfect balance. When you are running a small business or an independent agency, the idea of going on summer vacation like the rest of the world seems like a distant dream. However, with a little planning, you can have your cake and eat it, too. Before you leave, you have to be the boss and make sure that you have all your business ducks in a row.
Preparing for your absence
First of all, if you have a lot of deadlines or you are just getting your business off the ground, taking a vacation is not a good idea. However, once the dust has settled and the kinks have been worked out, every boss needs to take a little breather. Taking a vacation isn’t selfish; in fact, it can help rejuvenate you so that you come back more energized, more creative, and more relaxed. This is great for business, great for morale, and great for you.
Leaving someone in charge
Remember when the teacher would leave for a few minutes and point out their favorite pet to be in charge of the whole class? Yup, you need to do that before you head out on vacation. Hopefully, you will already have your team in place and assigned to the right roles in the business, so choosing the right person to be in charge while you’re gone shouldn’t be too hard. This person should know the ins and outs of the business – both the day-to-day tasks as well as the big picture stuff – to be able to troubleshoot and handle conflict. They should be someone that the rest of the team respects so that the place doesn’t turn into a free for all once you’re out the door.
Everyone should be on the same page
Assigning someone to be in charge isn’t good enough. You need to sit down with your team and communicate your expectations for the time you are gone. Make sure everyone is aware of the protocol when you are gone, and what goals you expect to be accomplished while you are on vacation.
Emergency contact list
Because we know that you won’t be able to stay completely out of touch, make sure that let your team know how you can be reached in case of an emergency. You’ll also want to let them know if you intend to check in, or if there are certain things or decisions that they have to run by you first. This also means that you have to have remote access software in place so that you are able to connect to your business, even while on vacation.
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