In this episode, Danielle and Brandon discuss important things to do to prepare you and your business for the holiday season. Danielle has a bonus for you on their website in resources, where you can download their holiday checklist, for you to use to create one of your own for your company.


welcome back to the on business podcast
with tons of experience in different
Industries in Canada and the United
States Danielle and Brandon give you
real talk no-nonsense expert advice
about running and owning successful
companies here’s your host Danielle
Jenkins and Brandon White
Danielle Jenkins the holidays are coming
what are we talking about today I can’t
believe the holidays are coming like
we’ve been in Holiday mode within the
company for the last probably four weeks
and it’s crazy and exciting and I just
can’t wait to for the next Pro what is
it now six weeks I guess until Santa
comes or the holidays come so I think
today is very important to talk about
because as CEOs as business owners and
Company owners entrepreneurs whatever
you want to call us uh our days are
crazy anyways our lives are hectic
constantly thinking about new marketing
and new things to implement within our
companies and I thought that we should
share things that you should be doing to
prepare for holidays in business or in
your business and if you haven’t already
started we are going to give you a
little bonus today I have my own holiday
checklist that I follow or our company
that our management follows uh just to
prepare for the holidays and we are
going to upload that to our podcast
website which is on
in the resources section and so you guys
can download this to help you guys get
prepared for the holidays and I’m
telling you now if you haven’t already
started preparing for the holidays get
on it this week go and download that
checklist and obviously the things that
are applicable to your company use them
and get on it because you do not want to
miss out on the busiest time of the year
and a time of year where if you do it
right you can boost your profits and
make lots of extra money so I highly
recommend listening to this episode and
listening to what we have to say today
so I’m going to share my top five uh
important things for preparing for the
holidays in business but there are about
15 other checklist items on that
document I was telling you about so head
over to our website when this is aired
uh live and you can download that
episode uh show notes and document as
awesome why don’t you start us off with
your number one okay it’s not actually
number one is this actually number one
is in importance are these just all
important these are all important roots
and these definitely all need to be done
obviously again if they’re applicable to
people’s companies or businesses but so
it’s not number one in importance it’s
number one in the list
let’s do this wonderful so first point
let’s just say that I won’t say number
one first point
create and have your holiday strategy
meeting with yourself or with your teams
so if you’re a solopreneur obviously you
need to have this strategy meeting with
how you’re going to handle the holidays
if you have teams and a company uh with
many employees you also need to have
this strategy meeting so when I talk
about strategy meeting I pull all of our
staff aside we have our management teams
and we have our
um our on-field or on-site teams
whatever you want to call them and we
have specific strategy meetings with all
of them so how are we going to be able
to handle the craziness during the
holidays what are we going to do for
better marketing what are we going to do
for better sales things like that with
person or each team again make it
applicable to your company and so when
I’m talking to my management we want to
ensure that there are no issues during
the holidays because we’re so busy we
are jam-packed in our company in the
holidays so what we do within our
is we increase
inspections and we increase
satisfaction within our company and we
can get into that on maybe another
episode or something but basically what
I want to do is ensure that there are no
redos or having to put out fires because
we don’t have the time for that so we
want to make sure that our management is
on board to be able to guide their teams
to make sure that that does not happen
during this time of year our staff we
speak to them again the ones that are in
the field about doing the over and above
extras because guess what every
homeowner or every client or customer is
stressed financially they have Santa
lists that have to be purchased they
have Santa letters they have to do they
have Christmas baking they have so much
to do in the holidays and so they want
to make sure that every little thing in
their life is perfect so we want to make
sure that those things are being done
perfectly and we do not want to add that
extra stress so we talk to our staff
about going over and above doing that
extra little one thing for them handing
out the Christmas presents to the
clients and all of those things so every
company is going to have a little bit of
a different strategy meeting but you
definitely need one with important
points to be able to get through the
busy time of year
I like that
and I the only thing I’m thinking is
you’re talking is my list and if you are
listening to this now I haven’t done the
meeting you’ve got to do it it’s
well I think sometimes what happens is
you as a business owner you get
down in deep into the calendar year and
it’s just so many things start piling up
that you can forget about this so it’s
always good to delegate this quite
kindly to someone on your team that can
run this program for you and you can
have regular meetings so that you can go
through this these checklists
definitely definitely and we do within
our company we have uh Samantha who runs
our residential division we have
Danielle another Danielle who uh is a is
a manager in one of our teams and so we
all kind of work together and they talk
to their team so I don’t constantly have
to do it but they know what needs to be
done and they know what our holiday
strategy is for sure so that is points
or the first point
um second point is create a marketing
plan this is this should be done I’m
talking end of second quarter mid third
quarter at latest
um when I’m saying this we’re talking
promotions additional things that you
can do within your business or company
um to make your profits better and so
Brandon and I were touching on these
points prior to our recording here and
Brandon made a good point that a lot of
say service-based businesses may not
have busy time this time of year or they
may not be super busy or they may not
need to boost profits or have a means to
boost profits and I said to Brandon I
said but there are ways and so we’ve
done an episode on this before when
we’ve talked about uh working with
current trends or or what is happening
with consumers and so if you’re in the
landscaping business for example maybe
you’re not going to be super busy around
Christmas like a company like mine which
is house cleaning because everybody
wants their house cleaned for when Santa
comes or when party guests come over so
this is the time when you offer gift
certificates you offer you know if you
pay for a whole month of of landscaping
up front in December you’re going to get
this gift or you are going to get this
there are so many cool things you can do
around the holidays to Market your
company so you don’t get thrown to the
back and you’re still making money
I think it’s a great idea the only thing
I was thinking that I would throw in
there as an idea is as you’re doing the
planning and you’re doing the Reach Out
the one thing that we found
was that during this time everybody is
doing this and whether they’re doing it
during this compressed holiday period so
it’s very easy your message to get lost
in the inbox a lot of people send emails
I’ve done that too and something is
better than nothing
I don’t know about you Danielle at the
end of the year when I get all these
things I’m just I just go through them
it’s just yeah thanks thing I mean I
don’t mean that thanks for the message
but you’re in a see of thank yous in
that way so what we have found
is we actually will send people happy
New Year versus Thanksgiving and
Christmas and
that way there’s not a lot of people who
do that
so if you can I’m always looking for a
way just to stand out
in some way from the crowd because you
are going to have this noise
if you decide not to do something like
that then something is absolutely better
than nothing and a little bit a little
bit of thanks one is you should do that
two is
it is helping your customer retention
which it’s easier to keep a customer and
upsell a customer
than it is to get a new customer so
on point number two I agree and and just
to add on to that again
um like you said everybody has everybody
sends out buy this get this do this BOGO
blah blah blah blah so this is a time to
reach out to your existing client base
again if you’re in a service uh business
like Landscaping unless you live where
Brandon lives I don’t even know if
that’s the case like I know here we have
so much snow nobody’s getting gardening
or grass cutting in the winter time but
reach out to your client base again
optimize on those existing clients give
them an awesome deal at the holiday so
you’re still boosting profits they’re
still remembering you everybody’s going
to come back to you next year to cut
their grass as of May so say if you pay
for May 2023 up front you’re going to
get this as a Christmas thank you
um whatever it may be so there are very
creative ways that you can or very
creative things that you can Implement
into your business to still make sure
you’re boosting profits you’re still
having a revenue come in especially at
Christmas because it’s such an important
time of year and for every business and
every company and if you’re not making
money at Christmas you’re doing
something wrong and this is why we’re
we’re harping on this now because you
need to get prepared um and do it now so
Point number three is order more
inventory and with that it may sound
just like for product companies so for
us we are a service company but we do
also have a product uh base or a product
portion of our company so we order so
many more supplies for our operations we
order so many more products for
Christmas sales we order more of
everything reason being you do not want
to be stuck in a time where post uh or
deliveries are intense and you run out
of supplies to do your day-to-day
operations that’s a number one for us we
want to make sure that we have more of
our day-to-day operational stuff along
with our extra sales that we’re going to
do at Christmas because lineups are a
huge sale processing times are huge and
we don’t want to miss out so we start
ordering more operational supplies and
inventory to get us through the holidays
um we usually do that in October like
beginning of October if not end of
September so it’s something to always
think about so if you are in service
think about that if you are in products
it’s a no-brainer you’re going to need
way more inventory to get you through
the holidays because nine times out of
ten your sales are going to be increased
if you’re marketing properly so it’s
definitely something to remember it’s
order more inventory and on top of that
also you know you’re wrapping your boxes
your ribbons your whatever it may be
like again we order our client gifts in
September for December because we don’t
want to miss out on that because if I
was to email somebody now to order our
client gifts we’re probably not going to
get them until February at this point so
again be on top of it order more
inventory supplies products whatever you
are going to need for the holidays well
in advance
yeah and this will be implemented for
people who are listening haven’t done
that for the following year but you
could call a little audible here and
still order this week and have something
for New Year’s which would be totally
acceptable to send the week after New
Year’s to people and you would stand out
well we
number four number four
um holiday Staffing schedules this is
super duper important uh every company
is going to have a different holiday
Staffing Brandon and I were laughing
earlier because I in our company
December is the busiest time of year for
us again everybody wants their homes
cleaned their business is cleaned uh for
holiday parties whatever they may be
um just because they’re going to be home
for a week you know between Christmas
New Year’s they’re going to want their
house cleaned every single year
Christmas is insane for us or the
holidays are insane for us so holiday
stopping for us we actually do a
blackout period in December so this is
part of our employment agreement and we
prepare our staff that we do not accept
any vacation time or days off in
December obviously if there’s a doctor’s
appointment or an emergency of course
nobody’s going to get reprimanded for
that but the reason we do that is we’re
so busy in December we cannot just like
my my number one point we cannot have
people calling in or you know taking a
day off
um just to take an extra long vacation
weekend or something like that because
we’re so busy so in our employment
agreement we prepare our staff that in
December it is a blacker period however
we are also off from Christmas until the
new year paid vacation for our staff for
that whole week they’ve worked their
asses off they deserve it and they need
to spend time with their families
because a lot of companies don’t
encourage that that’s something that we
encourage here within our company so
whatever your holiday scheduling looks
like you need to prepare that again
ahead of time we are already prepared
done for December and we’re only what on
the the fourth or the beginning of
November so we are already planned for
December so we don’t get screwed there
we don’t want to wait until mid-December
to be able to do this and then get
screwed for Christmas so be on top of
your holiday scheduling
um well ahead of time Brandon what does
that look different for you guys in the
engineering or or media
I think the customer service part but I
say everybody has to let figured out
what their team basically make sure that
you’re covered but you can some
businesses do this you can say Hey look
there’s no
there’s no customer service from or
reduced hours during holiday because of
this I think the main thing with
anything people do
and the reason that people get negative
feedback maybe for you when you take off
the week of this the last week in
December which a lot of companies do
companies don’t communicate to the
customer I’m not saying that customers
won’t get mad that they can’t get their
house cleaned the last week we’re using
Danielle’s company here as an example a
domestic tivis cleaning company I’m not
saying that people might not be upset
but they can’t get their house clean but
if Danielle puts a letter or the email
that goes out or the person who answers
and says hey look totally get it I’d
want my house clean too
our people been cleaning houses all year
and we value family values and we want
them to actually spend time with their
family so maybe we can do a mini
cleaning or maybe we can’t do it at all
we understand you’re upset we’re really
sorry give them some coupon or some sort
of thing that that can make them feel
better all I’m saying is
customer it’s not about customers being
upset or mad it’s about customers not
being irate and leaving you cannot agree
with something but if you understand it
and there’s a real reason behind it
people generally say you know I don’t
like it but I get it and and live with
it so that’s not on topic to your point
that that we’re covering but is just
about communication if you communicate
to your customers and you explain things
in and I don’t mean write a wall of
words in a paragraph because they won’t
read it I’m saying you gotta don’t I I
don’t mean dumb it down you need to
spend time
to get it into three four or five
sentences yeah so that people can read
it and they will read it because people
will not read a wall words and then just
and if you communicate you’ll be
surprised like I said you’re not gonna
they they may disagree
but hopefully they disagree and
understand so that’s why I’m gonna add
into that Brandon because you made a
good point there uh that I didn’t even
think about but so what we do as of
October at the beginning of every month
we send out a company newsletter to
every single one of our clients past
present current as long as they’re
subscribed they get this newsletter so
in October we start putting out
preparation for the holidays so October
1st it goes out and it say Hey you know
here’s fall happy October but just as a
reminder in December we are closed from
December 24th until January 2nd 2023.
um if you are currently scheduled to
have service that week whether they’re
on a weekly bi-weekly or monthly service
we will be reaching out to you to figure
out something for you so then what we do
the first week of October we look at the
schedule for that week and we figure
everything out we send the clients an
email we say hey you have a scheduled
cleaning this week
um we are going to put you at this day
or do you just want to skip it like we
give them options and most of the time
they’ll say oh don’t worry about it you
know I’m going to be home with the kids
it’s going to be messy anyways don’t
stress about it or you know yes I’d love
a back-to-back service the week prior
please put me in whenever possible
granted we do have some clients that are
saying oh my God I did need a service
because I’m having family over on
Christmas day so I need a clean boxing
day and that’s when we would add to your
point and say you know unfortunately we
are closed our staff do deserve
Christmas and holiday time with their
family and loved ones so we will see you
in the new year and they always
understand we’ve never had a client that
leaves because of it they just like to
push and see how far they can go yeah
they’re always going to do that so that
makes complete sense and hopefully
that’s useful to you listeners out there
and this is it goes across any type of
yeah for sure and use you used to adjust
it for your specific business and
Company so if anybody has any questions
about that please feel free to email the
show and we can kind of help you with
that if you’d like because it is
applicable to every business and Company
it just depends on how you do it and
there is a way to do it for all
businesses and companies out there so
with that comes my fifth Point not
number five but fifth point this is the
most important I think in my books
organizing your holiday party so this is
a big thing that we do every year for
our staff we show how appreciative we
are of their hard work how valued they
are again hard work throughout the whole
year and it’s Christmas time or holiday
time everybody needs a vacation and a
little bit of a party so we actually do
our holiday party November 30th before
December because December’s so busy so
it’s just a time to give them a little
bit of a break pre uh the crazy time in
December they get to have a lovely
dinner we do a get together with dinner
prizes gifts giveaways and you can make
it as extravagant or not as you would
like but please do something for your
staff and Brandon made a point about
what about remote workers well last year
because of covid we couldn’t do an
in-person party so we actually did a
zoom Christmas party so we got gifts for
all of our staff that got sent out or
delivered to all of them uh pre-party
then we all went on zoom and we did a
zoom escape room Christmas party so we
got split up into teams and we did our
Christmas party that way so it was a lot
of fun everybody opened their presents
on Zoom together everybody had their
little treats that we gave to everybody
from this great company that does gift
baskets there’s so many options out
um and if you don’t want to spend the
money on extravagant gift baskets guys
you can do it yourself go and buy a box
of Lindor chocolates for your staff and
give it to them but you definitely need
to do something in type of a holiday
party or get together
what was the name of the company that
you got the gift basket from we did it I
can find that and we can put it in the
shop in the show notes yeah yeah just so
people have a reference if they’re in
Canada I’m sure maybe it ships the U.S
too that because finding that stuff can
be hard there’s a lot of people who
offer it but
some of these things that come when you
after you order it just quite aren’t
what they look like yeah in general but
so yeah we’ll put that in the show notes
so can you give a quick review of The
points their points for listeners you
can grab Danielle put this together
because she’s great at processes and
systems and quite clearly all your
businesses eventually need to have you
need to get to sop standard operating
procedures but your you can download
that links in the show notes you can
grab it and you’ll have it and be off
and running and you’ll have it for this
year if you to help catch up and next
year you’ll be able to follow it so in
summary Daniel what are the quote
unquote top five things preparing for
the holiday season okay point one
holiday strategy sorry holiday strategy
meeting with all of your teams and staff
even yourself if you are a solopreneur
you need a strategy meeting
pre-Christmas and pre-holidays I’m
talking September number two create a
marketing plan and promotions on how
you’re going to boost profits during
this busy time number three order more
inventory supplies whatever you need to
operate your business or or increase
sales you need to order more again
probably end of Q3
number four holiday Staffing schedules
done arranged and discussed with your
staff and customers ahead of time and
number five organize a holiday party for
your staff whether it’s zoom in person a
dinner an event a game whatever it may
be make it a holiday party or get
together for your staff and I just want
to add one little bonus tip Brandon for
everybody listening guys I know this is
the busiest time of the year everybody’s
pulling their hair out preparing for the
holidays but as CEO of a company I do
want to say please embrace the craziness
and the chaos right now I’m a very busy
woman and very involved in the company
at Christmas time I’m involved anyways
but at Christmas time I love being
involved in preparing client gifts
company uh get-togethers holiday parties
whatever it may be a few years ago
I got all of our management together and
we were at the office we had holiday
music on after hours we had wine and we
put together over 500 client gifts
together and I loved it I loved every
part of it and everybody says oh your
CEO you don’t have to do that please
delegate it you know give yourself your
time back I love doing that stuff and
seeing mountains of piles of orders that
people order that are making you pull
your hair out during the day be thankful
for them embrace the craziness and enjoy
this time of year
it’s a great episode great tips again
these aren’t all the tips
Danielle has this awesome checklist for
the holiday season that you can grab
she’s making available to you
check out the show notes or the
description and you can get it Danielle
have a good holiday season but I’ll see
you actually before and during the
holidays yes check out the uh download
everybody I promise you it will help you
during the holiday season to help you
stop pulling your hair out I do promise
so uh thanks everybody for listening and
enjoy your holiday season bye everyone