The idea of taking a vacation can actually be a terrifying prospect for a business owner – how will your company keep running without you there? You’ve been working non-stop to get this thing up and running for a couple of years, and you know that you need to take a breather before you drop… but can the company afford to lose you, even if it’s only for a week or two? For the outsourced accountant, the answer is yes.
The reasons why you should take a real vacation
Let’s be clear, a vacation where your employees are sending you twenty emails a day asking for permission or advice is not a vacation, it’s just remote work. A real vacation isn’t going to let you recharge your batteries unless you can leave the majority of your work behind. Ideally, you wrap up a big project, take your much-needed break, and then you’re eager to tuck into a new project when you get back.
This is a crucial point – vacations aren’t something that you have to earn, they are actually something that boosts your productivity.
The outsourced accountant, able to take a proper vacation, can expect at least these three benefits outlined by Psychology Today:
First, being refreshed means being able to tackle problems with more clarity and energy, as opposed to continually grinding up against them. According to the linked post, 64% who take a proper vacation report returning to work being not only fresh but actually being excited to get back to work.
Second, fatigue dims your creativity. Creativity is essential in problem solving, and in identifying opportunities and areas of potential growth in your business. The post sites a study that says people that disconnected from work and got back to nature showed a 50% to their creativity.
Third, relaxation diminishes stress. Stress attacks our immune systems. So by diminishing stress the outsourced accountant is actually improving their health, reducing time lost to illness.
How to take a proper vacation when you own a business
So there are very good reasons to take a proper detached vacation, reasons that can have an actual bottom-line impact on your business. But how do you manage to take those breaks without your business going off the rails?
First, set up workflow documentation. The documentation should be so clear that a new employee would sit down and be able to do the same work that you do on a file on their first try.
Second, become an outsourced accountant. This automatically shunts a lot of the grind away from the desks of your people, allowing them to focus in on their specialties.
Third, designate one employee to be your filter. This employee is the only one who can contact you in emails or for emergency phone calls, all other employees must go through them.
Fourth, learn to delegate far in advance of your vacation. Your employees should be handling a lot of the daily workload anyway (that’s what they’re there for), while you, the outsourced accountant, are busy wooing clients, giving clients face-to-face time, or working on expansion ideas.
In the end, the point of all of this is that you could be streamlining your business now, instead of being in a rush in the week or two leading into your vacation. Get to work immediately on setting up your workflow documents (if you haven’t already). Become an outsourced accountant so you can shift a lot of your daily number-crunching out of the office. And don’t be afraid to delegate.