July 25, 2024

Advancing Corporate Yields

Pioneering Business Success

20 Ways Business Leaders Can Make The Most Of A Slow Summer Season

Summer can be a bit of a slow season for some businesses. Between people taking vacations, spending time with family or just relaxing during the summer months, opting to review and change up how the business currently operates can positively impact the organization as a whole when things pick up again.

To help leaders make the most of their off-season time, 20 Forbes Business Council members offer suggestions on how businesses can successfully navigate a slow summer season.

1. Invest Time In The Business

Spend time in your business. Start by establishing a mid-year, two-day working session where you evaluate your metrics, review your internal processes, refine your approaches towards annual goals and celebrate your leaders. Implement new software that allows for efficiencies and automations to prepare for busy seasons and your future. You should view this time as an opportunity more than anything else. – Alisha Delancey, Fourlane

2. Focus On Planning And Upskilling

During the summer lull, businesses should focus on strategic planning and skill development. This downtime provides a unique opportunity to refine long-term goals, optimize internal processes and upskill teams, ensuring readiness to seize market opportunities and drive growth once the peak season returns. Use this time effectively by reassessing your strengths and weaknesses. – Shakeel Ahmed, Atlas Surgical Group

3. Refocus On Employee Development

Summertime is a perfect time to refocus employee efforts toward achieving their individual development goals. Like the end of the year, the mid-way point of the year presents a great time to pause, review operational performance and recalibrate where necessary. Plus, vacations, travel and rest often bring fresh perspectives and new, innovative ideas. – Jenna Saucedo-Herrera, greater:SATX Regional Economic Partnership

4. Evaluate What Is And Isn’t Working

Summer presents a unique opportunity for growth and improvement. It’s a perfect time for organizations to review their data and pave the way for a strategic plan for the rest of the year. By evaluating what is and is not working and adjusting goals accordingly, companies can set themselves up for success. Also, the quieter time frame can be leveraged to nurture relationships and scout new leads. – Nikolaus Kimla, Pipeliner CRM

5. Overhaul Current Systems And Processes

Don’t let summer slowdowns go to waste. Use the time for strategic planning and optimizing systems and processes that usually get neglected—for example, clean up your CRM, automate manual tasks and revamp your website. If you tackle this over the summer, you’ll be ahead of the game come fall. Also, mix in team vacations so that everyone is refreshed and ready to execute all those initiatives. – Seth Williams, REtipster

6. Lean In On Business Marketing And Branding

Use the slow months to double down on your marketing and branding. Schedule photo shoots, create new videos or ads, update your website and more. It’s the perfect time to really focus on your overall brand message. – Erin Stafford, Stafford Company


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7. Work On Personal Branding

Focus on what brings you joy during the bright, summer months. Your thought leadership as a business leader and that of your individual team players takes a back seat when the busy seasons are in full swing. Personal branding that elevates overall business branding connects in a more authentic way to your customers and partners is an important task. Work on blogs, articles, videos and storytelling to emerge victorious. – Silvia Mah, Stella Impact Capital

8. Lock In On Business Growth

Summer is the best time to scale and double down on your business. As most business owners take a vacation or take it easy, it’s the perfect opportunity for a small business owner to stand out and take more market share. I recommend investing more in marketing during the summer months and pushing even harder during this time. – Nir Alony, Alony Media

9. Consider Introducing Seasonal Products

Introducing seasonal products strategically boosts sales, especially during the summer. For example, businesses servicing air-conditioning thrive in the heat while businesses selling bug-repellant peak during insect-active seasons. Diversifying offerings mitigates revenue fluctuations and ensures stability and growth. This alignment with consumer needs can tap into a lucrative market and enhance long-term success. – Eugene Zabolotsky, Health Helper

10. Nurture Customer Relationships

During the summer slowdown, companies can focus on nurturing relationships with existing customers. Implement targeted outreach or appreciation programs to strengthen loyalty. This approach builds goodwill and can lead to increased customer retention and referrals, benefiting the business in the long run. – Vanny Boon, Boon Martial Arts

11. Determine How To Incentivize Pre-Purchases

First, identify how you can incentivize your customers to pre-purchase ahead of their needs for the fall, either with exclusive savings, added bonuses and value or perhaps priority scheduling for service-oriented businesses. Second, summer is the ideal time to refocus on all things business development to put the business one step ahead of competitors once things pick up in September. – Adam Haroun, Aesthetic Altitude

12. Invest In Employees

Firms could invest in employees through training programs, team-bonding activities and recognition schemes to enhance skills, foster loyalty and boost morale. Additionally, they could host a strategy retreat to set the direction for the year. By aligning priorities, analyzing market trends and developing growth plans, they’ll be able to capitalize on opportunities once business picks up. – Joash Lee, VNTR Capital

13. Prioritize Employee Time Off

First, companies should prioritize their employees’ time off. Everyone from the top down to entry-level positions needs time to slow down and recharge. Additionally, the downtime is a perfect opportunity for running crisis-planning scenarios. With fewer distractions and a moment to breathe, it’s the perfect time to address potential challenges, conduct table exercises and plan response efforts. – Georgia Godfrey, Foresight Strategies

14. Encourage Rest And Relaxation

While it’s important to drive maximum productivity throughout your organization at all times, most people also recognize the importance of rest. Without spending time to rest and recharge, your team will more often have less holistic productivity throughout the year. Furthermore, when rest and relaxation aren’t promoted within the firm, a difficult culture often unintentionally develops. – Dan Kelly, ADAR Technologies

15. Mix Business With Family Time

Blend family time with strategic networking by attending events, resorts and country clubs where you can meet other business leaders. This allows for deeper, family-to-family connections with potential collaborators, creating a foundation for lasting relationships. Simultaneously, it provides quality moments with your loved ones, enriching both your personal life and professional network. – Senton Kacaniku, Spore Finance

16. Focus On Internal Improvements

One way companies can make the most of a slow summer season is to focus on internal improvements. During this time, we spend time doing deep cleaning and maintenance tasks that might have gotten neglected during busier periods. This could involve cleaning and organizing your physical workspace or refreshing your website and online presence. – Sara Khaki, Atlanta Divorce Law Group

17. Encourage Asynchronous Work

The summer months are a perfect time to encourage asynchronous work. By utilizing a strong project management platform like Asana, a project can be planned and executed around a planned vacation. Frequent time off sparks creativity, so I suggest that this time period be used for projects that require feedback from many stakeholders. – Elizabeth Kumbhari, CIBT/ Newland Chase

18. Strengthen The Business’s Media And Online Presence

Vacation season can be used as a good time to strengthen the presence of your business in the media and on social network platforms. Even employees on vacation can provide the brand with unique informal content, as well as business content that is created in a relaxed environment. It will also give the business an image of being transparent to the public while also showing the company’s unique values. – Nikita Prokhorov, Reputation House

19. Make Advance Plans

Plan for those slower seasons. If it happens every year, a smart business will plan for it and learn how to capitalize off it. Take the time to do a clean-up of internal processes, make strategic plans, visit remote employees and do research to take advantage of it. – Joe Crandall, Greencastle Associates Consulting

20. Look To Other Markets

Summer in the U.S. is winter in other parts of the world, making it the perfect time to do marketing in other markets. This will not only expand your customer base but also even out the peaks and troughs of focus on the U.S. market. It is also a great opportunity to work on your business, not in it. Take the time to review your data, develop new products, test new offers, review your marketing and train your employees. – Jaqui Lane, The Book Adviser

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