I don’t know about you, but I struggle to concentrate in this heat. I love the sunshine, but, like most Brits, I’m unprepared for anything outside of the ordinary when it comes to weather and would really like some aircon right now!
Stereotypical moaning aside, this weather raises two issues. The first is a big one – about why we’re seeing more extreme weather incidents, with huge problems in many places including northern Europe right now. This leads on to a wider conversation about climate change and sustainability. Many firms will be looking at their own carbon footprints as they move towards hybrid working and we will too, in our own small way, by encouraging staff to be more flexible in their office time and cycling or walking in where possible.
Secondly, the summer often leads to procrastination. We’re seeing a number of clients push things until September or beyond at the moment, often with good reason, due to holiday absences or the delay in a return to the office environment. There are also those who are postponing for no good reason. It’s an easy get-out, when, actually, it should be a golden opportunity. If you usually struggle to find time to do your own tasks amongst all the daily interruptions, then the quieter period over the next six weeks might just be the ideal chance for some thinking space.
Unless it’s your core role, marketing and business development do sometimes get pushed down the list in favour of responding to clients or your team. But it can’t stay that way for long. We meet numerous fee-earners who are so busy delivering, that they forget about their profile or pipeline and suddenly find themselves in a quiet spell with nothing coming in. This results in peaks and troughs which are no good for anyone’s cashflow or work/life balance.
Instead, use this time wisely. Mark out a few hours in your calendar and go back to basics;
- What is the overall strategy for the firm?
- Who is your ideal (profitable) client?
- Where and when can you reach them?
- What messages do you want them to see?
- How are you going to implement this plan and connect with them?
Don’t forget that alongside raising your firm’s profile in the right places to reach your target clients, you need to consider your own personal brand. If you do nothing else this summer, take a moment to refresh your LinkedIn profile and make sure it’s up to date and accurate.
So why not go and grab a glass of something cold and head to the garden for some planning time – you’ll be glad you did come the winter.