07 Jul Keeping Focus in the Summertime
For a lot of people, summer is their favorite season. Warm sun, the smell of sunscreen and the sound of a pool or ocean calling. This is the time of the year when you take the family vacation. When traffic in most local communities is the lightest of the year. School is out and we are in the middle of our summer. All is good, right?
For the business owner, sometimes the summer months are the hardest to manage.
Not necessarily. There are a lot of distractions and it can be easy to get the summer blues. For the business owner, sometimes the summer months are the hardest to manage. Your staff need time away, which if you are a small business could mean your company is not operating at full capacity. If you still have kids at home, your routine is disrupted with a family who needs your attention.
When my girls were in their elementary years, my youngest would ask me “Dad, do you get the summer off?” In her limited understanding, if school was closed then everything should be closed. I would try to explain that if everywhere were closed, she wouldn’t be able to enjoy the ice cream place or the water park. But alas, all she really wanted was her dad to get off work to come home and play. My girls are teenagers now, but they recently surprised me by stopping by my office to just say hello. I will always make time for my girls.
My point is, the summer months bring a lot of distractions along with the warmer temperatures. So how can you avoid the summer blues in your business?
The first idea is to plan ahead. I like to create projects for my team to help them focus on a goal to accomplish before the summer months. It might seem counterproductive to give my team another project when dealing with vacations, but breaking up the routine actually motivates the staff. In our case we do a lot of desk or mental work, so having a project to upgrade a studio or travel to launch a new market gives them something fresh to get their mind around. It engages the team. Having the same list of tasks year-round can lead to burnout and the burnout rate is highest in the summer months.
The second idea is to reevaluate your entire business. I like to schedule brainstorming meetings with key leaders in the company to get their input on what is working and not working. We are halfway through the year, what adjustments do we need to make to have a strong second half? Like the first idea, this breaks up the routine for us. While we are always evaluating our business, we don’t usually have long brainstorming meetings. Try to make them fun. Order lunch in, or better yet, go out for lunch and discuss the ideas.
The third idea is more personal. I like to use the summer months to read books and stretch my thinking. I love autobiographies, reading about other people’s stories. How were they successful. What lessons did they learn in life? I still enjoy the pool, just with an audio book playing in my ears.
What ideas do you have to avoid the summer blues?
Scott Miller is the CEO of Centerpost Media and host of the Create, Build and Manage Radio Show and Podcast. You can find Scott on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter via “@scottmillerceo.” Centerpost Media is a marketing agency with a vision to help every business they encounter with their media needs by providing outstanding quality, service and value. Centerpost Media is the parent company to BizTV, BizTalkRadio, BizTalkPodcasts and Bizvod.