2nd September, 2016
“What lies behind us, and what lies before us, are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.” Oliver W. Holmes Jr. (Civil War veteran, and U.S. Supreme Court Justice from 1902 to 1931)
It’s that time of year again when most of us return from, or head off on our summer holidays; a much needed escape from the office and chance to reset the work/life balance.
Have you considered, however, the benefits a holiday could bring to your work place? We are living in turbulent times with a lot of uncertainty, so this is a golden opportunity to step back and reflect.
As employers or employees, we all enjoy (and need) time away from the office, whether it is a day indulging in day time television or two weeks on a secluded beach somewhere hot. In fact, many of us return feeling refreshed and recharged, but how long does it take to get absorbed back in to the daily routine on your return? 10 minutes, 2 hrs, 3 days… a week?
Well, why not take some of your holiday enthusiasm and introduce it into your business. Of course the emails, mail and meetings will all need to be dealt with when you return, but there is no better opportunity than the ‘post-holiday calm’ to take a step back, take stock and plan for the future.
How long have you been fire-fighting the daily tasks and problems without focussing on the bigger picture? Are you wasting time and money by doing things the hard way? Are your employees motivated? Are you maximising the benefits of customer relationship management? The relaxed approach you take to tasks after a holiday is the ideal way to deal with any outstanding issues that you may have been putting off.
It is also important to share your goals with your staff that may well have their own ideas after their own re-energising break.
However, it is also important to leave the office behind when taking a break. Many of us are guilty of going on holiday physically but not mentally. Does ringing work from the beach or checking emails on the hotel computer sound familiar? It is very difficult to switch off completely, but when you succeed you will return to the office completely refreshed!
It is also important to have a long break when possible. Many experts believe that the benefits of a longer holiday, say one, two or even three weeks is far more beneficial than two or three days here or there. After all, it may take you two days to relax and wind down!
With a little bit of forward planning, our summer holidays can not only re-charge our batteries – but can re-charge our future business too.
Written by Carole White, Chief Executive of TEDCO Business Support, delivering business support in the North East of England.