Vacation Tips for Small Business Owners

Vacation Tips For Small Business Owners


Vacation Tips for Small Business Owners

Vacation tips for small business owners from small business owners. Vend Raleigh Mompreneurs share tips to manage business while you are away on summer vacation.

I own 3 small businesses and am very active with social marketing with all three. I travel internationally for mission work with limited or no internet connection a couple times a year and have a practice that I follow for those times. As much as I love social media, I do enjoy those weeks of unplugging, a much needed break! I usually set email auto-responders starting and ending a couple days longer than I need. This important emails that come in early, I can take care of without having to deal with the unimportant details. When I return, I’ve given myself a buffer if I’m overwhelmed by emails. I remind my readers/fans that I’ll be away but stating all orders after a certain date will be shipped the week after I return. I do schedule a few posts to run while I’m unplugged, but honestly I’m mostly missing from social media. I think this is a good reminder to my followers that I am a person! This is a great way to connect with fans, build relationships with them by showing your personal side and telling them more about you! I always have someone watching my social media accounts for spammers while I’m away, I give them full access with passwords to go in and manage any situations that might come up.

The week’s Vend Raleigh Leadership Call was full of tips for managing business with the unusual schedule summer gives us. Clare Luffman of Dream Unlimited, Gaye Esser of Redefine Balance and Susan Newnam of Initials, inc. joined me as we talked about how we manage our schedules when we are busy with summer travel and the kids being home.


Vend Raleigh Mompreneurs tell how they manage vacations:

As the sole owner and operator of Traci Huffman Photography I find “real vacations” almost impossible. I would love to shut down all of my work and social media, but the truth is that does not happen for me, at least not yet. The fact that Traci Huffman Photography is still in it’s beginning stages and I am constantly working on building my brand makes it that much more important that I stay connected to any potential clients, current clients, and all social media. An automated response to messages is not an option for me right now because part of booking and working with a client is connecting with them on a personal level. There are so many wonderful photographers in the area that it is crucial to try and be the first to respond and connect. It is also important to stay on top of all of my current sessions and work to get them to my clients as promised. My plan for vacations is to allot specific times for work only and the remainder of the time I will focus on my loved ones and relaxing. (Ha! Do Mom’s really ever relax on vacation?!) We shall see how this plan works out as I am headed to the beach as we speak for some family time…this will be the real test!   –Traci Huffman

One of my favorite perks of owning my Mary Kay business is being able to work from anywhere! The amount of time I spend working depends on the vacation and what my husband and I agree on in advance. Sometimes, because I’ve worked while we’re traveling, I am able to take certain tax deductions on aspects of our trip. With so much accessibility online and by cell, I don’t “unplug” completely, but the key is finding balance so you’re still recharging and your family feels they have your undivided attention. For example, last week we spent time in Florida with the in-laws. Knowing I had some specific items that needed to be done I found small pockets of time while the kids were occupied with their grandparents, etc. My daughter likes to make it a game- can mommy finish her phone call before it’s time to leave for the pool? And the long car ride gave me time to plan, set goals and go over the calendar with the hubby. 15 minutes of work here or there on vacation is nothing to the hours it allows me to spend with my family!  –Heather Seemuth 

When HandmadeJILLry goes on vacation, I typically state nothing will ship until a certain date (usually two days after I return home). However, I do not stop making JILLry or close my shop. I take my JILLry making supplies with me, just not my shipping supplies.  –Jill Markijohn 

For me, it all depends on where I’m going and for how long. When I go away for a weekend or extended weekend, I usually just leave both of my businesses open and reply to emails as the need arises. I might not be quite as speedy as usual (I’m probably getting to concentrate on the emails after my daughter has gone to sleep) but I still keep up. However, if I’m gone for more than 5 days or travel with just my iPhone and iPad, I close my Etsy shop. And if I go anywhere with crummy cell phone service, a lack of internet or that’s worth having an assistant monitor my email for inquiries, I do just that! Three years ago we took a 10 day trip all of over Italy, and although I did check my email most evenings because our hotels had wifi, I really just verified that they had been addressed. It was a delightful break, but a bit confusing coming home and catching up on the conversations!  –Carrie Richardson Fry, cr2f Etsy Shop and Richardson Fry Photography

I never post that I am on vacation because I’m overly concerned about letting the public know I’ll be leaving my home unattended for x days. When I get inquires, I reply manually that I am out of the office for a bit but usually wait until I get home to reply fully. I also schedule my FB and blog posts in advance so my customers don’t notice I’m away. Although it’s a pain to stay connected while on vacation, I’ve found it’s easier for my business and therefore most relaxing to me. I do disconnect electronically on a personal level though which is very refreshing!  –Jessica Rotenberg, Jess Rotenberg Photography
I completely unplugged for the first time on this vacation and it was awesome! I set a creative out of office, made sure everyone knew I was leaving, and had my right hand person on duty in case of emergency. And it all went fine. Things really can wait while I enjoy time with my family. Who woulda guessed? -Kelly Phillips, Boost Interactive Media
I’m in the car and responding to Facebook while on vacation. However we are not to destination yet so it’s not official till check in! I am (take a deep breath) going to unplug from business! I set up an email auto responder, shared privately with the must know clients that I will be gone (did not post anywhere). In a perfect world I would have scheduled blog posts and social media for when I’m gone but I ran out of time so I’m giving myself grace, taking a deep breathe and letting it go. When I get back I’ll hit the new marketing plan hard. Here’s to Un plugging (raising my cell to you for a cell bump) now to look out the window at the beautiful scenery… or maybe some Pinterest. –Kristal Reagan, Simplify Websites
So, we ask you, how do you manage business while on vacation?
Cary Heise, Raleigh Small Business Women
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