August 2017

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How to handle the scenario when unavoidably the whole of your team have time out, at the same time

Let’s face it, sometimes this happens, particularly when you’ve got a small team. Unavoidably everyone in the office needs time out, on the same day.  This is most likely to happen when some of your most loyal staff are already away, and then someone else suffers a bereavement, at the same time as someone else had a doctor’s appointment booked, it goes on…

So how do you keep the office open? (when really it’s not!)

We’ve come up with a list, depending on how much notice you have, and how regularly this situation occurs.

 

If you have notice…

  1. Schedule your marketing with this period in mind. Any campaigns, give yourself sufficient time so the number of incoming enquiries will slow just prior to the period when you’re short-staffed, and restart at the point when staff are coming back.
  2. If people can order online, schedule your offers accordingly and make it clear when delivery times will vary from the norm.
  3. Consider setting up marketing that involves filling in a survey, with an automated Thank you message, building time for you to respond after your team is back up & running again.
  4. Communicate to people you are working with currently, giving them dates when you plan to be open/closed.
  5. Advise couriers of specific dates when you won’t be in.
  6. Consider what happens when your phone rings, does it have a message system, and is it up to date and relevent.

 

If you have no notice…

  1. Set up autoresponders on your emails, and specify when you’ll get back to people.
  2. Think about the people you’re working with currently – Customers and Suppliers alike – send them a quick message – being proactive is best.
  3. Leave a note on the door – especially if you’re likely to get deliveries – ideally get someone nearby to take them in for you.
  4. Consider getting your team to check emails while they are out, especially if they’ve asked for time off at short notice (then customers can get answers even if the phone isn’t being answered.)

 

If this regularly happens…

  1. Some of the above will apply too.
  2. Perhaps put a note on the home page of your website with your changing hours
  3. Amend your business opening hours on Google – you can alter the times for different days of the week
  4. Think about what business you’re missing; how much, how often, and who are you letting down?  Could you catch up with them in another way?  If they can’t catch you in summer, they may assume you hibernate properly in the winter months!

 

Make sure your normal is OPEN.