Hard to believe as it is, we are now amongst the last three months of 2016 so it’s important for businesses to be ready for what the last quarter may bring. With leaves falling and frost growing what impact will the last two seasons of the year have on your business and what can you do to stop them from hurting you?
Organising all invoices/billing
During the last quarter, you must ensure that everything is up-to-date from previous months as this could be the busiest time for you and your business. Go through your accounts and triple check that the invoice from June has definitely been paid! In terms of invoicing, your partners should be available to pay as usual however throughout November and especially December you will start to see ‘skeleton’ teams across the board with the festive period comes school holidays so make sure there is an agreement between you and your partners in place so you don’t fall short whilst they are away.
If your partners are taking too long to pay why not look at your options? Invoice Finance can stop the delay and give your business the solution it deserves.
Although it might be a hectic time for you and your business, the months may run very slowly which means the morale of your staff will also start to drop, in order to sustain the level of motivation and willingness try and offer staff incentives such as bonus schemes and targets, if you want to treat all the staff then why not treat them to lunch now and again or even drinks after work? Anything that gets them out of the office and under the impression you are spoiling them should be enough to make them continue working with the same drive!
With autumn and winter comes seasonal changes which may make or break your business so make sure you are ready for whatever the wind blows in. For those in retail this is when your business becomes a goldmine so you must make sure that you have enough stock to keep up with high demands. You must also ensure that you have enough staff to also keep up with the influx of customers that are coming into the shop daily if your staff don’t have a sense of urgency then you could potentially lose your customer to a competitor!
If your business isn’t cut out for the winter, then you need to make some changes so it can still function throughout the frost! For businesses such as ice cream shops and those that sell summer merchandise why not cater to the winter and autumn and sell things such as; special hot drinks, mulled wine (always a crowd pleaser), if it’s fashion you’re in why not sell items fit for the winter like snuggly hats and gloves? Or if you’re more of an outdoors place why not sell sledges and skis?!
Some might see the last quarter as a perfect time to launch a business as it’s the peak season for people to go shopping/eating and walking with friends, family and partners, however, bear in mind for businesses in the leisure sector the first 6 weeks can be very calm, so you might want to tell staff to take time off during that time or offer package deals and offers to entice the public to use your services, especially as you are a new business.
For those already established you must learn about your competitor. As they are new they will offer incentives that will draw customers in so you must try and match this so you don’t lose yours.
Although it is just one month out of the three it is a big month and that is December! The Christmas and festive period, which everyone looks forward to, unless you are Scrooge in that case bah-humbug!
To close the year, celebrate with your staff with a Christmas party/day out, and preferably do it outside working hours so that they can actually relax and wind down with a glass of wine or 5! As Christmas is such a busy time of the year it is important to get something booked and in the calendar as soon as possible. If you are stuck for ideas here are some suggestions to see you through. Take your pick!