Vacation as an Entrepreneur
Written by Antwan "Twiz" Taylor
Entrepreneurs – we tend to wear multiple hats and work 24/7 on our businesses because, in most cases, we are the business. It’s hard to let go of our baby because we are the only ones who will care and nurture for it properly. However, what do we do when it’s time for us to finally take a vacation? We deserve vacations just like everyone else who works a 9-5. We don’t have to work constantly all year round with no break; in fact, it’s not healthy to do so. The purpose of us working so hard is to create the life we envision. Therefore, we need to enjoy ourselves at times while we are building the empire.
Here are 4 steps I recommend entrepreneurs take before going on vacation.
1. Clear your workload- It would be best to actually work overtime before your vacation to clear up your existing workload. It is best to go into your vacation with no work or as little work as possible. The reason being is, while you’re on vacation, that workload is going to build up and when you return home it will be back to reality J. So although you will be enjoying the sun and waves in a few weeks, don’t slack off now. Go into overdrive and work harder so you don’t have to pay for it later.
2. Let your customers know- Make sure you give your customers/clients the disclaimer a few weeks out, perhaps even a month, before your vacation that you won’t be available. Post it on the website, tell them face to face so they are aware, and put it in your email signature. Having the message on multiple platforms is best so there will be no excuse for people to say they didn’t know. And a day prior to leaving for your vacation make sure you set your emails on an automatic response, which again notifies people you are unavailable.
3. Have a concise meeting- If you aren’t a one-man/woman business and have the benefit of an assistant or a few employees, it is critical that you have a meeting with them the week before you leave. In this meeting, you must emphasize all of the tasks that should be done while you are away and what they must do in the case of a crisis. Contacting you should be the absolute last resort. They should be trained already to know the ins and outs of your business and therefore they should know how to properly handle customers/clients. Remember, your business is your baby and you are trusting them with it; so make sure all of their questions and concerns are answered before the meeting is over. You must have 100% confidence in them to keep the ship afloat while you are gone.
4. Let Go- the last step is to actually let go. When you leave for vacation, don’t handle any business. It’s a VACATION! Enjoy yourself with your friends, family, or significant other. Don’t bother to answer emails, phone calls, or anything unless it’s an absolute emergency. Clear your mind and let go. You work hard so much you deserve to have fun and be stress-free. When I’m on vacation, I try to stay off my phone as much as possible or I put it on Airplane mode so no calls or texts can come through. Whatever works for you, do it. But make sure you let go completely. Your business will be there when you come back!
In conclusion, if you take these 4 steps, I am certain your work-vacation transition will be smooth and stress-free. And when you return to work, things will still be on the right track. In due time, your business will grow and you will be able to take more vacations at will. Just keep working and never give up!