What you’ll learn in this episode:
In today’s episode, I want to delve into the importance of having a profitable and restful holiday season for entrepreneurs like us. I can’t stress enough the significance of intentional planning, efficient time management, and clear communication to ensure that we can truly savor the holiday season while keeping our businesses profitable.
I’ve developed a four-step roadmap that I’d like to share with you, and it starts with analyzing your calendar, noting your planned time off, confidently communicating your plans to your team and clients, and tidying up ongoing projects.
And here’s the kicker – these principles aren’t just for the holiday season; they’re applicable year-round. These steps are universal and can transform the way you do business, making it more efficient and impactful.
So, let’s make the most of our time and learn to prioritize rest without compromising the success of our businesses. Take a listen to today’s episode to find out how!
In this episode, you will learn to:
- Plan with Intention: Start by examining your calendar. When do you want to be out of the office or immersed in the holiday season? Decide what you want and set your end goal.
- Note Your Time Off: Block off the days you plan to take off in your calendar. Make it official, both for yourself and your team.
- Confident Communication: Communicate your plans clearly and confidently to your team, clients, and partners. Be upfront about your availability, empowering others to plan accordingly.
- Streamline Ongoing Projects: Review your ongoing projects and identify what’s mission critical. Adjust your strategy to ensure things keep moving smoothly while you’re away.
- Celebrate Your Success: Don’t forget to celebrate your achievements. Taking intentional time off while maintaining profitability is a significant win. Recognize the positive impact on your business and your team’s well-being.
Mentioned in this episode:
Work/Connect with me:
Hello, everyone, and welcome to this week’s episode of the It’s Your offer Podcast. I’m Jess Miller. And I’m so excited to be here with all of you. We have so many new listeners, as we are going into this last push of the year. Can you believe it? As I’m recording this, we are two months away from the end of the year. That’s like 60 days, oh, my goodness, like, where did this year go? But I love this time of year.
I don’t know about all of you listening. But this is the most amazing time of year in my business, there’s so much momentum, my clients have so much momentum. And there were so many great things happening in people’s businesses and happening for all of us. And so I love to come on here and talk about how to make Q4 the most amazing time in your business and not lose yourself in the process of this. So for all of you that are listening today who are new, welcome to the podcast and get ready for this episode, which is one of my favorites. And for all of you that have been here along this ride, thank you so much for being with us. Here it is almost at the end of another year. And we’re together. And we’re doing amazing things. And we’re putting incredible things out into the world and having a big impact and helping people. And it’s just the best thing about being an entrepreneur.
And how do we do that? We do that by the amazing things that we offer and the amazing energy that we put out into the world and the big heart that we all have. And I just feel like it all comes together in Q4. And there’s a lot of reasons for that. One of the major reasons is because when we start to have this sort of condensed timeline, when people see the end is coming (and there’s this sense of urgency), we really focus in, we really get clear, we really decide what we want. And we decide what’s important. And we kind of cut out all the other things.
Maybe sometimes because we just don’t have the time and the energy and the bandwidth to put in all the stuff that doesn’t matter. But the awesome thing about it is we get super efficient, and we get super impactful. And so what I started talking to people about in this vein, was this idea of how to have a profitable and restful holiday season. And I’ll share with all of you that a few years ago, I did a challenge. It was a four day challenge called the profitable holiday roadmap. And it was over four days where we worked through, we kind of workshopped, how do you have a profitable and restful holiday season, and it was a huge success.
And so I wanted to come in here today and share with you the four most powerful steps to having a profitable and restful holiday season. I am here to tell you that the whitespace – the downtime, the time when you’re not in work mode, quote unquote, and you’re not sitting in front of your computer, staring at the screen is some of the most powerful times in your business. And I will argue that even though people say when you’re not, quote unquote, working, you are not making money and you are not having an impact and you are not doing things that make you profitable.
I’m going to just stand on my little soapbox here and say that that is bad information. Yes, you need to have all of those things I just mentioned in order for your business to be thriving. However, it does not come at the expense of your whitespace. And when you do it right, you can actually do things like enjoy the whitespace and enjoy your holiday and be rested and start the new year feeling amazing and not sacrifice your profits, not sacrifice the money that is coming into your business, you can do it both. However, the key is, it needs to be intentional, and it needs to be planned. One of the things that people forget is to actually make this part of the business plan – it is kind of an afterthought. It’s the thing that we think like oh my gosh, it’s only 60 days, and we got to like make this happen. Now it’s two weeks till the end of the year. That’s what ends up pinching us.
But today I’m going to show you how to get in front of it. And if you are listening to this podcast, consider this a sign you are meant to have a profitable and restful holiday season. And I’m going to tell you exactly how to do it for you, for your team. And for everybody around you that both you and your team touch. Because let’s face it, we don’t operate in a vacuum. Everything we do affects everybody else. So this is your contribution not only to your business to your client, but let’s just say like to humanity, to your families to your loved ones. Because when you do this, right, you leave space for you, you leave space for the things that you actually became an entrepreneur for. And so let’s talk about how to do that and really go kind of like singing into the new year. Okay, so I’m so excited for this.
So if you want to have a profitable and restful holiday season, I’m going to take that a step further and say, if you want to have a profitable and restful business, you need to be able to take some time and I’m just going to say at the holiday season at the end of the year is a great time, but you need to be able to Take some time where you can disconnect, but also be profitable. And also keep your business moving. And here’s a secret, I’m going to tell you all right in the beginning, we are talking about the holiday season here. But this is applicable all the time, you could take the same roadmap and apply it to your summer, you can take the same roadmap and apply it to your kids school vacation, it doesn’t matter, it actually is applicable to everything, these steps are universal. So consider this, like a golden nugget, that is going to change everything about your ability to do business, be profitable, and rest and take time out of the office and all the things. Okay, so let’s just jump right into it.
So the first thing we want to do, this is going to sound very basic, and you’re going to be like, really just, I cannot believe that you are calling this number one. But I’m going to start with this. Number one, one of the most important things is you want to take a look at your calendar. And what I mean by that is you want to look at your calendar and decide when am I going to be out of office? When am I going to be celebrating the holidays? When do I essentially not want to be in my business immersed in my business? What I affectionately call this is like planning without your control freak mode, like a lot of us go into these times, and we just kind of wing it. But what I’m suggesting is that you start with taking a look at your calendar, and deciding what you want. And this is a very important business. Best practice, even outside of your holiday calendar is to decide what you want. Start with the end in mind, I think that was a Stephen Covey, Seven Habits of Highly Successful People, I could be misquoting this, but I am pretty sure he talked about starting with the end in mind. Reverse engineering, your business and your calendar is crucial. Don’t create the plan. And the thing is are shoving stuff in unless you know where you want to go. So you want to start with looking at your calendar, right? When do you want to either be out of office celebrating, not immersed in your business, take a look at those things. And decide, decide what you want. Okay, that’s number one. And this is true also for your team. So if you’re doing this as a company exercise, which I highly recommend, it’s we collectively look at the operations like when are we going to close for the end of the year, when are we going to not be available, whatever that looks like you want to decide, I will tell you all as a side note my company every year, we close down for the last two weeks of the year, I give myself and everybody that’s part of my team contractors, everybody, should we shut down. And I tell you, it’s so empowering. When I’m like, “Listen, you could do whatever you want, but we’re not going to be here.” Right. So it gives people permission to also take that time off, you’re empowering them. So look at your calendar, decide what you want. That is step number one, and do it for you and your team.
Number two is you want to note the days that you potentially would like to take off. So this means actually now putting it like in writing, putting it in your click up, putting it in your calendar, blocking those days, whatever it is, you’re going to want to make sure that you note those days off. And then I’ll say this is like to a or maybe this is actually number three, you want to be able to communicate this information with confidence to all of the people around you that matter. So if it’s other team members, if it is your clients, if it is other contractors or companies or partners that you work with, you want to be able to get clear on this really nail these days down or this time down, and then be able to communicate that with confident so that there’s no surprises and no questions. And doing this as early as possible. Again, the reason I’m talking about this on the podcast now is because you don’t want to do this at the 11th hour, you don’t want to be like oh yeah, by the way, next week, we’re going to be closed for three weeks, you want to get in front of this, okay? So you want to look at that calendar, you want to note those days off, and then you want to be able to communicate this to people with confidence hand in hand with that is essentially number four is cleaning up your ongoing project list. Okay.
And what that also means is when you look at your profitability and the things that are making you money, especially between now and the end of the year, you want to make sure that the things that are really moving the needle are protected. So you want to really think about okay, if I take two weeks at the end of the year off, you know, what projects are going on? What milestones do we have, what things are coming due now that are going to be important? You really want to look at all of those pieces, so that you can make some good decisions on what needs to happen to keep some of that going without hiccupping because You want to keep it moving forward. Now, this doesn’t mean that you can’t push some things off, or maybe you, you know, dial something down, that, you know can be dialed down, everything doesn’t have to stay the same. But you want to just be able to plan and execute without the chaos and the way that you do that you look at everything you understand what’s going on, you understand what’s really important, what’s mission critical. And then you figure out how you’re going to plan and execute around that, taking into account the time that you want to be out of the office, or that you want to not be in it. When you go to communicate these, this time and these things to people, you can then talk to them with a very fleshed out and clear plan, like here are our plans. This is what we’re going to do. Here’s how this affects you. I always, always, always think about my clients, or my partners, or whoever it is that I’m working with that I’m communicating, you know, really put it in terms of what does this mean for them. And I will tell you, as I mentioned earlier, one of the most powerful things about taking this time off at the end of the year, what is in it for them is that they can take the time off, too. If we plan this well. And we’re very intentional about it, we figure out how this could be a win win situation for everyone.
And sometimes giving them the space means that they get to do it too, which is really, really powerful. And then we talk about how we’re going to move things forward. And it’s very clear and cohesive, and people can understand it, there’s no surprises, if there’s any questions that come up, you can answer them, if there’s any little wrinkles, you need to work out, you’ve got plenty of time for that. And it’s really clear and things are moving. You know, moving forward, identifying anything on your schedule that is non essential and deleting it, I am a huge fan of. So you know, get rid of that stuff you don’t need there. There’s a lot of times, like I mentioned, there’s a lot of churn. But when there’s a short period of time, and there’s an end goal in sight, and there’s something that you really want, like we’re going to close down for two weeks, or we want to hit this milestone and then be able to take the time off, you start to get really clear, until those non essential things can go. And then last but not least, celebrate it. I always joke I’m like, celebrate it like it’s 1999. I’m really dating myself here. But really celebrate, you know, this is one of those goals and results that sometimes people just glaze over. Like it’s not a revenue goal, per se, or it’s not a get XYZ, you know, clients into this program. But it is a really powerful result for you and your company. And being able to get in front of the things give people the time that they need, you know, reward people with time with their families, and time off, doing all of those things and putting together that plan in a really powerful and cohesive way so that you’re rested, and your business is intact, and it feels good and controlled. Going into the new year is something huge to celebrate. And it also teaches your team and others around you. That more does not mean more money, you start to learn how to be really efficient, you start to get very clear on what actually moves the needle and what things matter. You can flex, you know your business within these timeframes based on what you want. And let’s face it, like something always comes up. So right now it’s intentionally, you know, a holiday time or holiday shutdown. Great.
But you know, sometimes life just happens. Can you take the same skills that you and your team are building? And the consistency of that and actually apply it to other things that come up? The answer is yes, it’s awesome. It’s awesome, awesome. And you learn to do things in a different way in a different cadence, because you have less time. And here’s a really unpopular opinion. Most people think you need a lot of time, I am here to tell you, the less time that you have, the better you will work. And I have gotten into more like soapbox conversations about this and conversations with my clients. But you’ll take the time you give yourself so when you really start to shrink that time and focus it in and get very intentional with it. And you view time as your most important asset, then you really start to interact with it differently. And the thing that you create from that is are they’re just amazing. They’re amazing.
So I am really challenging all of you. What would blow your damn mind at the end of this year? What do you want for your holiday season? while also keeping in mind you that you want to be profitable and you want to be restful? So if you are going to be dreaming and scheming. What would this end of the year look like for you? Like what would you do? And here I’m going to go on my soapbox again one more time and just say whatever came up for you. It is possible. It is possible. This is your HELL YES! It’s that inner voice being like Go for it. There’s a reason there’s a total reason for it. However, you have to plan it, you have to reverse engineer it. So I want you to take a minute and again think about what do you want what is how Oh, yes. What would this end of the year look like for you? If you were in full on how? Yes, that’s what I want to do. Let’s go do it.
And then to recap, you have to go do these things. Number one, you need to look at your calendar. Basic, but super important, like open the thing up, what is on there? Where does whatever you dream and scheme fall in? And how does that actually look on your calendar? To you want to know the days you want to be out of pocket? Right? What does that really look like? Is it a week? Is it two weeks? Is it three days? Like what is it, you want to really put that on the calendar, like put a stake in the ground for you and for what you want and for what your team wants? So really note that time on your calendar. Three, you need to clean up your project list, you need to look at what is happening over the next couple of months. What is important, what’s moving the needle? How do you clean that up? How do you make sure that the things that really matter are getting done? And how are those going to fit in? You need to actually have a plan. And you need to be able to communicate that plan with confidence. Communication is the key. Nobody likes surprises. They like surprises when it’s a cute thing in the mail. That’s fun. But other than that they don’t like surprises. So how do you make sure that you have clarity and you know exactly what you want. And you’re common during that time on your calendar, and you’re putting together your plan. And you’re being able to communicate that with people. That is really important. Always remember in your communication, you want to think about the people that you’re talking to. And you want to think about why do they care, like what is important to them? What is in it for them always think in terms of Win Win, like how will this be very positive for them. You also want to give time for questions and ironing out any wrinkles or any of those things. And then when you’re also looking at that schedule, you want to get rid of any of the non essential things, delete those limited time creates efficiency, you’ll be shocked at how much you get accomplished. And you get rid of the stuff that’s not serving you, you don’t need to do it between now and the end of the year. Again, you don’t need to vomit or blow your business up, you could just push some of that stuff back. Or maybe you can get creative and how to fit those things in.
But I promise you there is a way if you plan for it. And then last but not least, celebrate it, celebrate it. This is why people become entrepreneurs, to own their time to have freedom to do good in the world, to give other people the things that they want, like time with their families, and, you know, restful times at the end of the year. And all the things that is so good, so good. And there’s so many awesome things out there that come from the whitespace. So much momentum and power come from being in that space where you are not sitting in front of your computer. And you are just giving yourself this time to what I affectionately call marinate, you want to marinate. So many amazing things come out of that. And here’s the thing that people never talk about. I mean, I’ve talked about it on this podcast. But a lot of people don’t talk about it. When you’re not quote unquote, working, you’re actually working you are it is productive time. Because what you’re doing is you’re becoming very introspective, or you’re experiencing something totally different than your business, but everything is related to everything else. So you’re picking up pieces of information, you’re meeting new people, you’re looking at different opportunities and connections, and you’re finding those similarities to the things that you’re doing in your own business that you think maybe have nothing to do with your business. But I promise it always does. And when you let that marinate, you start to discover really cool and innovative things. And never mind all the energy and the replenishment and the soul, you know, feeding things that you do that make you. So I really, really want to encourage you that this time at the end of the year is the time that you take out of your business, but most especially because it’s happening now, in the very near future. Really thinking through this profitable and restful holiday season could be the number one key to the best year in your business ever coming up.
So I want you to go back to this recording, I want you to take these pieces, I want you to start planning this right now. It does not have to take a lot of time. In fact, it can be really, really quick. And it also can be really fun, really fun because people get excited about this kind of thing. And they get really hopeful. And they start to see how they can be efficient and creative and all the things. So you want to do it together, make a thing of it, maybe have a few cocktails, and you know whiteboard and do all the stuff and get together and work as a team. It’s so great. And of course, I would always, always, always love to hear all the success stories, because as I said earlier, this is one of the things I am most proud of in my business. And we have never skipped a beat as a result of doing our holiday season like this. It’s always been profitable. Our q4 has always been our strongest years. Our clients have had their most profitable time in Q4. It happens over and over and over again and a big part of it is that this profitable holiday roadmap so we want to hear all those success stories and we want to hear them from all of you. You got this! I can’t wait to hear what your holiday season is going to look like and until next week everyone I will see you here on the podcast in a week take care.