Friday, June 21, 2013

How will you manage your business whilst on holiday?

By Dee Matheson

It’s that wonderful time of year again here in South Africa, winter has started, it’s cold in the morning and evening but during the day the weather on the Highveld is fantastic, blue skies and lots of sunshine. What more can you ask for? The kids are getting excited about the July holidays and all your plans are made for that vacation you’ve been saving so hard for. 

Now here’s the dilemma, what to do with your business while on that well deserved holiday? You can’t close the doors, you need the money and you also don’t want to let your clients down.  It’s only human to stress about this when you are supposed to have a relaxing time with your family. Some business owners have very understanding clients and communicate with them regularly and have created a good relationship when it comes to taking leave but what if you’re not that lucky and don’t have the backup support to allow you to take time off? Or do you make the fatal mistake of either not taking a holiday at all and disappointing the family or trying to work whilst away?

Here are some tips to help you enjoy your holiday this year:

·        Take care of the majority of work before you go away. Make sure whatever can be completed prior to departure is done and dusted and let your clients know that all the tasks or jobs taken aboard have been completed. Plan ahead and get help if you need it to get the job done.

·        Communicate with your regular clients or customers and let them know that you’ll be on leave and when you’ll be back. Don’t leave them in the dark because it’s Murphy’s law that when you’re not available, that’s when they want you the most.

·        Have a support system in place and if you don’t know of anyone, get yourself a Virtual Assistant to ‘run’ your business whilst you’re away. Let her have all the necessary emails, contact information and current work that’s not been finalised yet. She can be your go-to person and handle things for you and also liaise with clients on your behalf so that they don’t feel stranded. Currently I’m doing this for an influential client who is overseas and it’s working like a charm. My client still feels in control of her business even though she is not in this country.

·        Be available for any emergencies. Again, this is where your Virtual Assistant comes to the fore and she will be able to assess if there is any need to contact you.  She will very likely be quite capable of handling the situation herself and only contact you if the situation absolutely warrants it.  If you still feel it’s necessary while you’re away, set a time to speak to your Virtual Assistant and run through any important issues and the outcome thereof. She will be your right-hand person and has your business interest at heart. Remember, if your clients are kept satisfied, she will be happy too because she knows she will get paid and is pleasing her client, that is you, at the same time. There is no better reassurance than having a satisfied client and a job well done for both parties. 

·        And the last but not least point, RELAX and enjoy the time that you’re away. You have now done everything in your power to make sure that all your ducks are in a row. You deserve that much needed break!

If you need support and are looking for that perfect back up Virtual Assistant, contact Dee Matheson on or look at my website on


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