Have you been on vacation yet? Or maybe you’re just planning it? When and for how long are you leaving? With whom and where? Do you have time for a vacation? Are you going to rest on this holiday? Is it enough for the last year/ several years of hard work?
Or maybe you could use more vacations or short breaks a year? Maybe you need to get away from everyday life more often? How often? Perhaps my questions only annoy you. They raise your already exorbitantly high level of frustration. Then what I am writing now is just for you! I know this condition very well.
When you live on a treadmill of daily duties, day after day, day after day, it’s hard to even imagine that you suddenly jump out “for a moment” and that treadmill will keep spinning. That he somehow drives himself and takes care of himself, because it’s no accident, no one will get hurt.
This is especially difficult to imagine when you run a small business. Most of the everyday decisions fall on your head, the functioning of the business requires your constant activity and “pushing”. In this situation, it is even difficult to imagine that you will disappear for longer than a few hours.
What will happen then? How will everyone do?
In addition to these concerns, there is usually another one that usually resolves the question at the end: “I can’t afford such excess.” Since you are barely making ends meet, you are messing with payments to suppliers and salaries of employees, how could you not now defiantly leave and rest?
I can assure you that in 90% of cases this is an excuse. You don’t have to go with the whole family to the Dominican Republic for a month. You can rest more modestly and just as effectively. But most importantly, your fresh outlook and clear mind are much more important for your business than your constant presence and “saving” on holiday expenses.
However, how to arrange a vacation if the problem is in pursuit of a problem and it is difficult to even imagine that you are leaving the company for a few days? How do it more often than once a year?
The answer, of course, is the right management of the company, a clear structure, responsible employees, and effective systems. However, it takes time to sort it all out.
In such a situation, if you have not prepared for departure earlier, you no longer have the opportunity to interfere in the organization of your company. But you can take special steps that will allow you to rest and allow your company to survive.
Step 1. Find time for a vacation
Amid your daily duties, it’s easy to find time for a vacation. Find a suitable date and plan your vacation.
There is a Zen saying:
- “Meditate for 20 minutes a day. Unless you don’t have time. Then meditate for an hour.”
- “Out of time” does not exist. This is a state of mind. No one controls the time. He just exists. There will be no more and less, no matter what you do.You can only choose what you will do in the time allotted to you. You can choose a holiday.
Whatever date you choose, it will surely conflict with something else. With someone else’s project, official deadline, and someone else’s plans. Choose the date that has the least conflicts. As little overlap as possible with other important terms, you know. During the period when there are usually the least cases, the least customers, or when there are usually the least fires. Do not look for excuses for the fact that there are no such periods in your business. You have to choose something. So choose the optimal date, enter it into the calendar, and do it without any remorse.
Step 2. Prepare the company and yourself
This is the part that most people neglect. And therefore, on the one hand, they are afraid to leave, because of “how will the company cope”, and on the other hand, when they return, they find such a mess that they forget that they were on vacation halfway. per day and they don’t want to enter the next trips in the next few years.
Therefore, always start preparing for a vacation at least a month in advance. Think about what will happen in your company during this time. What projects will need to be completed or tasks completed shortly before or during the planned vacation? And what tasks will you have as soon as you return?
Will you be able to plan the implementation of the most important current projects and tasks in such a way as to complete them in advance, BEFORE leaving? To have time to get acquainted with the results calmly, before leaving to make sure that everything works? Or at least so that you can track progress and make final adjustments? So that your team just finishes and closes the topic on their own. And he left you with the feeling that you are in control of the most important thing, despite your departure.
Please note that not all projects and tasks can be under such exclusive control, so choose only those that are the most important – from the point of view of your customers and your company. Then get busy with daily current tasks. Ideally, make a list of them and think about which ones can remain to wait during your absence, and which ones will require daily attention, and for the last group – who could take care of them instead of you with a little practice. Do not shift these tasks to the last minute.
It is best to start delegating tasks to designated people two weeks before the scheduled departure. If necessary, prepare a short instruction – as simple as possible. Finally, think about what awaits you on your return. Will there be any important task on the first day of your arrival at the office? That you won’t have time to prepare for this? Think carefully.
First of all, you should plan your return from vacation so that you have at least two days to inspect what is happening in your absence, respond to fires, clear the mailbox, and monitor the state of the company. Only then will you be ready to embark on larger tasks.
Secondly, maybe it will be possible to plan preparation for the tasks that are still waiting for you so that something will happen in your absence. Maybe someone else can send a request to the client? Or can they be sent before departure? Maybe you need to inform customers in advance so that they report any problems before you leave? This will avoid disappointment on both sides.
Usually, before a vacation, you get very tired and are unable to make these additional preparations. And yet they are irreplaceable to leave and return just as calmly. Who knows? Maybe the trip will make you realize that your company can work differently and that your employees can relieve you of certain tasks daily.
Step 3. Plan for failures
This is exactly what you usually do before you plan a vacation. You foresee all possible misfortunes, everything that can go wrong or interfere with your well-deserved rest.
Interestingly, most often, immediately after setting the departure date, you forget about all these possibilities so that they do not “scare” you and distract you from your decision to rest.
What if you had done exactly the opposite?
Spend half a day listing the most serious failures that may occur in your absence. Think about how you can prevent them. Finally, how should the team behave in such a situation: who should react and how? Can you temporarily resolve an emergency without your participation? Are the employees confident that they can handle it? Who can they turn to? What decisions should I make on my own?
Try to leave your team even with the simplest “Breakdown Instructions”. Be sure to discuss this with them and make sure you understand each other. Tell us how they can contact you in absolutely exceptional cases, in which cases, and how and how quickly you will respond.
If you follow these three steps, I can assure you that you will rest, you will finally be able to leave work, your return will be smooth, and the company will benefit greatly from your absence. The benefits will also be for employees whom you trust with more responsibility, independence, and trust.
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