Holiday Countdown – Get Ready for Christmas
Christmas is just around the corner! Is your business ready for holiday shoppers and an increase in demand? A wise person would say that preparations for Christmas should start months earlier, especially with some marketing campaigns that might need some while to be picked up by your current or potential customers. So, hopefully, by now, you have set all your long term plans to work for you, and you are ready for the final countdown and last minute adjustments or changes. Here are some last minute things to check.
1) Do you have enough employees to work in your store or customer support service for the holiday? If you are not sure that your answer is “Yes” here, or if you hesitated to answer, perhaps you should think about hiring another pair of hands just in case? Or, if you manage a large store, having a couple of extra people on stand-by can’t hurt. What if someone calls in sick in the last minute?
2) Are all your employees properly trained for the holiday rush? Do they all know what to do if your POS terminal starts acting up? Or if something else turns up? Go over important things with your employees, especially with those temps that you hired just for the holiday and make sure everyone is well prepared for certain questions or issues. It can never hurt to have a backup for some things.
3) Do you have your best employees attending customers? Make sure you have those reliable ones representing your company. You don’t need employees hiding somewhere around the store and texting their friends our checking their Facebook. Have your best and most competent employees handling customers that very day.
4) If you need to hire some temporary staff members to help out throughout the holidays, then try first with those who used to work for your company and perhaps left in order to finish their college. They are already trained and skilled, you know them well, so you can probably re-use their skills if they are interested in working some extra hours and making some extra dollars.
5) Handle your personal matters early, and don’t leave gift shopping for the last day. If possible, ask your employees to do that as well, because you probably don’t want to leave your business or to have your employees leave your store or office at Christmas running around to buy a gift. Complete that task upfront.
Apart from these strictly operational things, there are lot of other things to consider before the holiday. Will you be giving some gifts or discounts for Christmas? What about your loyal clients, will they get some extra benefits? Are your best products with major discounts placed on the best spots around the store so everyone can see them? Have you stocked your supplies on time?
Having an email list consisting of your most loyal customers is a great thing to use around Christmas as well. Use your list to notify your loyal customers about the discounts and offers you will have for the holiday. Remind them you are here for them during the holidays as well.
Finally, plan your every move. Prepare everyone and re-check more than once if everyone is clear on what they are supposed to do. Do some minor last minute adjustments and leave nothing to chance. Having the whole team working as a well oiled machine is a perfect strategy for the line of customers that might step into your store during Christmas time or that might start calling your support line.