This past week has been a special week for family-owned CLP Design Studio. The extended CLP family vacationed together. Brenda and her family met up with Eric and his family, along with the additional branches of their family tree for a vacation in the Thousand Island of New York. While Brenda and Eric usually rely on Skype and email, this brother-in-law/sister-in-law team enjoyed some real face time. Most of their time together was focused on family and fun, but the business they run together was never completely out of mind.
Here are a few of Brenda and Eric’s strategies for enjoying a vacation as small business owners may prove helpful to you, too!
- Try to communicate to your clients, well in advance, when vacations are planned so they are not surprised by an out of office reply. Brenda and Eric make an effort to reach out to their clients to tell them when they are going to be unavailable. Sometimes it can be as simple as adding a line to your email signature with notification of upcoming vacations. This allows them to plan ahead so their client’s projects don’t get behind schedule.
- Limit your logon time. While many people can put work completely on hold during a vacation, that is not the case when you own your own business. Brenda and Eric try to check their email and voicemails daily and reply to any messages that require responses. They really try to only login once a day so they can still enjoy quality vacation time.
- Look for inspiration all around you. Vacation is a time to recharge and re-energize. As artists, Brenda and Eric find inspiration everywhere they go. Architecture, signage, moonlight reflecting on the water and kids coloring all serve as sources of inspiration. At one point, Brenda even commented on the color palette of a sunburn!
Remember that play is important. Taking a break and allowing yourself to step away makes it possible to look at your work with a fresh perspective and solve challenges creatively.