How to Prepare your Business for Summer


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Summer is upon us, and for a lot of us, that means a change in our "routine" schedule. Part of being an entrepreneur is that you can ebb and flow, determining what you want the summer months to include, how much you do or do not want to have as a part of your daily routine.
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From summer vacations to having kids out of school, it might mean that the hours you held during the September - May season are different, or you make the choice to run your business differently so that you can have more time to soak up the goodness that comes with the days of summer.
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Today on the blog, a few of our Conference Alums are sharing how they're prepping their business for the summer, sharing what they’re doing differently, including tips and suggestions for you as well.

We hope you find this helpful, and have an amazing summer ahead of you!


What do you do to prepare for working during the summer?


Planning out my summer work schedule a year ahead of time is my biggest tool! When inquiries come in for the following year (weddings), I make sure to space them out really well during the hotter months. My husband is a teacher and my daughter is a student, so both have the entire summer off.

With a slightly scaled back schedule, I redesign my office hours. Rather than my typical 10-5 (which are hours built around the school day) I switch to 3-4 hours in the morning and 3 hours in the evening. This allows me to be focused and not live with serious FOMO with my family at the pool!
- Chloe Minyon of English Tea Paperie

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I always have good intentions of planning ahead for the summer but quite honestly spring is usually busy for me, so I tend to just do the best I can sliding into summer! I have big dreams every year of being ahead of the game and ready to spend more hours by the pool!
- Shawna Clingerman of Shawna Clingerman Heart Art & Design

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Going into summer, I prepare more mentally to let myself enjoy it. When something fun comes up - say yes first, figure out the rest later. Work will always be there later in the day or earlier in the morning or on a rainy day, but if my kids want to go to the pool, we say yes.
- Laura Mays of Invited by LaMaWorks

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How to Plan for Your Business in the Summer - Society for Creative Founders

Since I am a bit new to the small business owner life, I am having to look at summer planning from a different perspective this year. Last summer, I was still in a corporate setting, so most days our son was in day camp, or every once in a while he could spend the day with me at the office. Since I am working from home full-time, I have a lot more flexibility with my schedule.

My husband and I are looking at ways that we can keep our son from either being in front of the computer or television all day. I know it won't be easy, as we still have work that needs to get done throughout the day, but I believe with some solid planning now, we'll have a relatively relaxing summer and really get to enjoy our extra hours together. We will get a calendar out and plan days for family trips - whether it's a day at the zoo, or simply taking bike rides every morning, to get some exercise, we're making sure to be intentional and write these things down.

Also, we are making the extra effort this summer to keep our son up to speed on the next school year. We ordered grade appropriate workbooks, that he'll spend a little time on each day. While some may wonder why we would be giving him "homework" over the summer, we don't look at it that way. We look at it as keeping information fresh in his mind, so he is not starting from scratch in the next school year. He also loves workbooks, so my advice is to find something your kid loves. That might be a kit of science projects, or a favorites book list, but make a plan now, to include some of their favorite things to help keep mom and dad sane and the little ones busy.
- Jacqueline Snoderly of The Secretary Studio


Do you work the same hours during the summer that you do from September to May?

I plan to maintain the same working hours over the summer, but they will be spread across the week a little differently. Currently, I work between 15-20 hours a week (we still have a two-year-old at home). During the summer, my six year old will be home as well so we have made plans to hire a nanny/babysitter two days a week so that I get some block work done without feeling like I am neglecting my family.

I am also working on shifting my waking hours to earlier and by June should be steadily beginning work around 5 am so that I can start my day with some quiet time and a few working hours before the littles are up.
- Sarah Coats of Beloved Paper

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How to Plan for Your Business in the Summer - Society for Creative Founders

Nope! We look at our schedule about 3 times a year. My husband is also fairly flexible, so we talk together as a team about what's working for each of us, and where we need to make some changes. We are open and honest in our needs for that particular season and we work together to schedule our days.

During the summer we look at what the kids are in and what we need/want/can be there for. I know that I have to take violin lessons, he knows he wants to be there for golf lessons, and then we add in our own personal activities too. We have a sitter that helps out 10 hours a week, plus grandparents. With 4 kids, our schedule is always evolving!
- Laura Mays of Invited by LaMaWorks

My kids are all older school age, and generally able to handle me working during the days. BUT I do like to get outside and enjoy the sunshine, so often I will do what I can to get up a little earlier and work while everyone is sleeping and quiet. Then I can enjoy the afternoons just as much.
- Shawna Clingerman of Shawna Clingerman Heart Art & Design


Do you still publish content as much during the summer as you do during September to May?

Yes! I plan out social media ahead of time and actually find I have more to post during the summer months. Photos come back from Spring weddings and I have design sneak peeks for fall/winter and the following year weddings. Plus, who doesn't love the "summer in the sand, cocktails in the hand" behind the scenes pics?!
- Chloe Minyon of English Tea Paperie

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Lately, I've been pulling back a little so I will be continuing that trend in the summer months. I'm working on a few big long-term projects so I've been low-key online and on social media, choosing to spend my energies on other aspects of my business in preparation for big changes this fall.
- Kelly Parker Smith of Hello World Paper Co.

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I have just revamped my blogging and email marketing so *technically it will be more. However, to go along with the spirit of the question my answer would be 'Yes'. I am currently working about 2-3 months in advance in regards to content creation. Which means that is that over the last few weeks (April and May) I have been planning and creating content for the 3rd quarter (July, Aug, and Sept). So by the time summer arrives, I will be ready to go with all of my content (blogging and email marketing, to be honest, social media is still a struggle...but a work in progress).
- Sarah Coats of Beloved Paper


If you could offer ONE piece of advice to a fellow creative about prepping their work schedule for the summer, what would it be?

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Plain and simple, plan ahead and be consistent. Get a planner out now (before summer) - paper or digital and write down all of the important dates first. Birthdays, vacations, camps, etc. Make sure all of those dates are on the calendar, so you don't miss them or double book. Next, start planning an ideal day with and without kids, especially if your kids are old enough to travel to grandma and grandpa's alone, or attend overnight camps. Be consistent in your plan. All too often we can just revert to what is easiest, but I am being extra careful this summer to not let that happen. If I write it down it's going to happen, even if it means a change of plans for an outdoor activity versus an indoor one. The weather in North Texas can change drastically from morning to afternoon, so always have a back up plan.

Lastly, don't forget to include your kids in the conversation. Ask them..."what are some things you would like to do with mom and dad?" This might bring up something fun you never thought about.
- Jacqueline Snoderly of The Secretary Studio

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Plan well and give yourself grace for the rest. With all of my planning and scheduling (I can be a little Monica Gellerish about organization) I honestly have no idea what my summer will look like. Will my two-year-old want to nap now that brother is home? Will my six-year-old be as easy going about quiet play times this year? And then there's potty training...). I am planning well and giving myself grace for the rest. I am trying to be as honest as possible with myself in regards to how much time I will have to devote to work and building in cushion around that just in case.
- Sarah Coats of Beloved Paper

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Arrange your day so that you are working when you are most productive. If you are most creative in the mornings, start early, or if you are a night owl - embrace that. Not everyone is meant to be a morning person. The beauty of working from home is that we can set our own rules, so play around with different schedules and see what works best for you and your family and then stick with it!
- Kelly Parker Smith of Hello World Paper Co.


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YOUR TURN

Thanks so much to our Alums for contributing to this post!

Share with us below, how are YOU preparing
your business for the summer?


 
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