I had a discussion with a long time friend of mine earlier today and he made a comment that has made me really start thinking about the importance of giving "true value" in the gifts that you hand out at Christmas time.
Our discussion was centred around my father - a small business owner who passed away over twenty years ago now - and we were laughing while we reminisced how unsettled he became when he shut down his shop at Christmas time.
Don't get me wrong, our family always went on a wonderful holiday at Christmas time and spent some great times away together, but we often laugh about the fact that after about 2 weeks away from the shop, Dad started getting really "toey" about getting back to work.
I questioned him about this one day many years after I had moved away from home and was working myself as an employee for a large corporate company and his response was quite blunt and to the point (which was very much my Dad!!!) -
"Look mate" he said "it's ok for you blokes who work for big businesses not to worry about having time off because you get paid regardless of whether or not you're there, but if I'm away for too long my clients start looking elsewhere to get their hair cut (he was a self employed hairdresser) so after about two weeks I needed to get back to the business so that the bills could get paid and I kept my customers happy so that we could have more of those holidays the next year".
It's only now - almost twenty years later - that I really appreciate his comments back then - it is great to be able to spend quality time with your family at this time of year, but as small business owners we all have those nagging concerns in the back our our minds -
Will my clients be ok about me shutting down for a while at Christmas?
Will I be able to pay all my bills if things are quiet over the holiday period?
Will the business run smoothly if I leave it in the hands of a manager while I'm away?
So what has this got to do with BookPals?
One thing that is not going to go away over Christmas - next year - or for as long as any of us are around - is our financial reporting to all the statutory bodies.
If you're a small business owner you know that as soon as you get back to work after Christmas you'll have all those end of calendar year reports that you need to lodge and all those budget forecasts that you'll need to start thinking about for the year ahead.
If you're the spouse of one of those small business owners and you're saying to yourself "What can I get them for Christmas that I know they'll appreciate?" why not think about giving them a BookPals subscription?
That's right - why don't you give them a BookPals subscription for Christmas?!!!
Before you say "You've got to be joking" answer these couple of questions -
How many hours are they going to be stuck in their office putting their paperwork together for their accountant next year?
How many times are they going to grumble because they can't find all their business receipts next year?
How many times are they going to be in a bad mood because they have to use some "accounting program" to do their bookkeeping that they don't understand or like?
Does a BookPals subscription for the grand total of $60.00 per year sound so bad now?
All you need to do is enter a name and an email address - and they even get to use BookPals for the first month for free to see if they like it!!!