It's only a few weeks until the official start of summer. With the busy tax season wrapping up, many of us shift our minds to spending time outdoors, barbequing with friends and embarking on that much-deserved family vacation. But, did you know that the summer can be one of the most productive times of the year for your business? Below are 6 strategies that will help you take advantage of the summer slowdown to reflect, recalibrate and recharge.

Evaluate and set goals for the rest of the year.

Take the time over the summer to evaluate your business's performance and the set goals at the midpoint of the year. What accomplishments are you proud of? What would you like to improve upon, and what would you like to achieve in the next coming months? It's been proven that people who reflect on their past performance and set goals for the future are more successful than those who don't. As Yogi Berra said "If you don't know where you are going, you'll end up someplace else."

Catch up on projects that you didn't have the time to work on during tax season.

Many of us have projects that we would like to work on during the year, but are so busy we just don't get the chance. Do you have a something that you would like to get caught up on? Whether it is catching up on your account receivables, or learning a new app to help streamline your processes; take advantage of the quiet in the office to dedicate yourself to working on the project that you've neglected over the year.

Hire a summer student.

The summer is a great time to hire a student to get caught up on those administrative tasks that have been left on the back burner. Students are a great staffing solution for short-term projects, peak periods and temporary leaves and they will jump at the opportunity to gain valuable experience working on real-world projects. Don't know where to find a good candidate? You can start by contacting your local college or university. You never know, that student may turn out to be your next great hire.

Organize, Organize, Organize.

If you are like me, when I'm bogged down in the middle of tax season, I don't have time (or the energy) to organize my files. Eventually things get so bad it looks a tornado swept through my office. Now that you have some extra time, dedicate yourself to de-cluttering your work space. Make sure to shred old documents, and file anything important that you may need for later. If you need help coming up with filing strategies, there are numerous tips and tricks on the LedgerDocs blog. As the old adage goes "a cluttered desk equals a cluttered mind."

Reconnect with your clients and follow up on potential business leads.

Now that the mad tax rush is over, it's vital that you take the time to reconnect with your existing clients. Follow up with them to ask how satisfied they are with the services that you've been providing, if there is anything that you can do to make their experience better and take the time with them to better learn about their business. Show your clients that you care about their business by taking them out for lunch or host a client appreciation event. The summer is also a great time to re-up your sales strategies. Offer incentives to new clients, follow up on potential business leads, and spend time fine tuning your marketing strategy. Most importantly, don't be afraid to try out something new.

It's summer – have fun!

Let's face it – we've all worked hard during the past few months. The summer is a great time to recharge your batteries. Have some fun with your co-workers; take advantage of the sunny weather and have an extended lunch on a patio, organize an after-work hiking trip, or invite everyone over to your place for a backyard picnic. It's no secret that the most productive offices are also the ones that have the best work culture. As Andrew Carnegie said "There is little success where there is little laughter."


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