As a no nonsense small biz coach, I hear so many myths around Small Businesses like: I’ll never see my family if I make a lot of money or you have to put on a professional face all the time or if I make too much money most of it will be taxed and taken away or you always have to make friends in business and on and on. Why should the Holidays be any different? We as small business owners have manufactured a whole set of myths around the special occasion to feed our needs and fears. Here are some silly small business holiday myths I learned the hard way :
1. Nobody Will Hire Me During The Holidays
This is a doozie and it’s also a good excuse to sit on your assets and do nothing. It’s not true, as my last December sales can attest to. Human or business pain doesn’t stop with the passage of a certain date. People still need your help. They are still willing to pay for that help. You just have to get in front of them and tell them how you can help them. Holidays or not.
2. There’s No Real Networking Going On
When you’re already having trouble getting leads, your insidious mind tricks you into believing these lies to make you feel better about the very fact that you’re NOT getting many leads. Ditch the excuse and get out there. Yes, the type of networking changes into more parties and charity fundraisers at this time of the year but meeting people is meeting people, whether you’re sipping wine or egg nogg. WIBN has a great event on November 28th to network with fellow WIBN Members! Check it out here.
3. All Decision Makers Are Away For The Holidays
Last year I set myself a challenge: I was going to penetrate the conference organizers of Toronto with my conference coaching package during the Holidays. The week between Christmas and New Years, I was dialing like crazy. What I found was that while most staff had taken the time off, some high level execs were at their desks. They answered their own phones because a. no staff and b. they were on a slower tempo and wondered who would possibly be calling. Even though I was a ‘supplier’ they took the calls and we had a good laugh about being the only 2 humans working at that time of the year. I made amazing contacts that I get business through a whole year later. What’s stopping you from doing the same?
4. I Have To Give A Gift To My Best Clients
Last year I thought I finally had enough money in the business to give a big gift to my best clients. I even made a huge deal out of it by hiring a ‘gift specialist’ who I briefed in detail about each client’s business, hobbies and personality. I then set up personal face to face meetings with each of them to do the delivery in person. December was going to be my time to deeply connect with my wonderful clients. Low and behold, my clients were too busy to meet (until in some cases- spring!), the ‘gift specialist’ got a few orders mixed up which ended up in embarrassing hilarity and my business results from the clients I gifted didn’t change one bit compared to any of the years they went without gifts. In one case, when I simply had to mail the gift to a client, she didn’t even remember to thank me for it. I had to ask if she’d gotten it before she even remembered it. Certainly, nobody stayed on as a client because of a gift, they did it because they were getting value. This year, my sister in Rwanda through http://www.womenforwomen.org/ will be getting the donations in kind, thank you very much.
5. Even Though I’m Assuming Everyone Else Will Be Off, I Can’t Afford To Take The Time Off
Holidays for many of us is a time to reconnect and to rejuvenate. No, business doesn’t stop and it’s not an excuse to stop your marketing but don’t forget to take a few days off for yourself too. When you work smart and hard the last few months of the year, it means you not only can afford to take a week off to rest but that you DESERVE to.