by LaKisha Greenwade | Featured Contributor
Summer time is often time to catch up with friends, and relax a little bit. However, you are doing Summer and your business a huge injustice if the month of August is not used to strategize and properly prepare to 4thquarter sales. Sure it’s a popular vacation month and families find themselves preparing for back to school. Don’t let your business get lost during this period of fun in the sun.
While everyone else is distracted, you should be focused on fine tuning or creating a new business strategy to crush your goals. No one said you have to leave the beach to make this happen. However, there should be dedicated time scheduled for business strategy and profit review, check-in meetings with team members, and review for potential risks that may impact fourth quarter sales. Conduct a SWOT analysis to determine if your goals are realistic and achievable. Invite key personnel to join you at the beach or for a seasonal lunch to check in. It is possible to mix business with pleasure (otherwise known as networking).
Half of the year has passed, meaning you still have time to catch up or continue to thrive. It’s possible to take some down time and enjoy the festive season while being intentional about private moments to strategize. The early bird gets the worm.
Think of it this way:
July- Reflect. Create a reflection period to determine went well, what didn’t and what you’d like to do different in your business.
August- Create. Design a strategic plan to reach or increase your sales. Consider marketing efforts to test and evaluate in September and October. Revamp your social media strategy and clean up both your personal and business brands on Linkedin.
Sept- Implement. Test. Repeat. Create a pre-holiday sales strategy with a defined end period. Invest in a weekend to replenish your energy to prepare for 4thquarter sales. Train staff and engage in crucial conversations with vendors or supply chain reps to ensure you can achieve year end goals.
Oct- Rev up. You’re way ahead of the game so all you have to do is determine how to implement offers for loyal and new customers. If you’re smart, you’ll create something that keeps them buying through year end with incentives to share with others.
Nov- Check Inventory. Review products and staff availability. Make sure you can supply all of your offers. Get out of the house and office to meet and mingle with folks. Be sure to take one day for yourself to just think and recover from all of your hard work.
Dec- Hopefully you’ve met your sales goals and this period is icing on the cake. If you still have room to grow, it’s ok! Review your strategy and determine what you can do without giving products or services away for free. It’s possible to be profitable.
You’ll reap tremendous benefits while focusing on your business during the closeout of the summer. You’ll be more relaxed moving into the 9thmonth and exude confidence in your strategy. Key decisions and contacts made on the beach may ensure your priority placement on great deals for your customers. Lastly, you’ll be in position to adapt easily because you would have thought out possible scenarios that would affect your business and customers.
It’s best to think with a clear mind where the only competition is yourself. Rev up and exceed those goals to close out the year strong. I’m rooting for you.