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This holiday season, small business owners have a lot on their ham-filled, mashed potato-garnished plates. There are holiday parties to attend, Christmas recital costumes to make the kids’ costumes for, and decorations to put up around the house — but they also have to worry about the business side of things: any seasonal product promotions, year-end reviews, and office holiday party plans.

With everything happening all at once, it can be challenging for business owners to feel as if they truly have a grasp on their business as well as their personal lives during this busy time of year. Here are three tried-and-true tips to keep everything balanced this holiday season:

1. Come in Earlier

The important thing to remember as an entrepreneur is that your workday consists of getting done everything you need to get done, and only once you’ve done that is your day over. Make daily to-do lists so you clearly know exactly what you need to accomplish for the day, and come in early enough to get a jump start on your list for the day.

Most holiday festivities take place in the evening (or start a little earlier in the afternoon) so if you typically come into work around 9 a.m. or 10 a.m., make it a point to come in at 7 a.m. when you know you have a lot to do outside of the office. As long as I get my work done for the day, I don’t pay attention too closely to what time it is when I exit those office doors. And the early bird always gets the worm — because I come in so early (sometimes as early as 6 a.m.!), I have never missed a recital, family dinner, or soccer practice with my two sons.

2. Don’t Go Crazy with the Office Party

It’s easy to get sucked into planning an overly elaborate holiday party for your employees, and with good reason! They put in a lot of hard work over the year, and you want to show them how much you appreciate everything they do. Give them a nice party but move the celebration out of the office. This eliminates the task of transforming your routine work space into a winter wonderland. If you take your team to a fun restaurant, and do some caroling at your local assisted living home, your employees will still get in on the holiday cheer, and you will have less to clean up and plan on site. This year, we’re taking everyone to a bowling alley for some chicken wings, beer, pool, and karaoke — keeping the fun but without the cleanup!

3. Be an Understanding Boss

In the midst of to-do list making and schedule reorganizing, don’t forget that your employees also have busy holiday schedules of their own. Keep the same principal in mind that you adhere to yourself: as long as the work gets done that needs to get done, heading out early a couple days, or taking some time off can most definitely be arranged. Remember to keep up a good flow of communication with your employees so you know everyone’s holiday plans and schedules. An understanding boss makes for a better work environment and one that can be filled to the brim with holiday cheer!

About Deborah Sweeney

Deborah Sweeney is the CEO of MyCorporation.com. MyCorporation is a leader in online legal filing services for entrepreneurs and businesses, providing start-up bundles that include corporation and LLC formation, registered agent, DBA, and trademark & copyright filing services. MyCorporation does all the work, making the business formation and maintenance quick and painless, so business owners can focus on what they do best. Follow her on Google+ and on Twitter @deborahsweeney and @mycorporation.


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