It’s a vicious circle. You’re tired and stressed from your work as a solicitor in small firm, and you really need a break - but just thinking about how to get away makes you feel tired and stressed!
Weighing up the options, you might decide that staying put to focus on your firm is best for you right now – which is fine. However, at some point you’ll need to set aside some time to unwind and relax. Coming back reinvigorated and refreshed can do wonders for your motivation and wellbeing, and leave you more able to handle your client relationships effectively.
Here are the Small Firms Division’s top five tips for taking that much-needed break without wrecking your firm:
You can’t turn your firm into a ghost town for weeks on end. If you have staff, make sure you’re aware of their holiday plans way in advance so that there is cover to keep the office open and running. Stay in contact by phone. Remember your obligations under the Code of Conduct. Indicative behaviour 7.4 of that Code suggests you make arrangements for “the continuation of your firm in the event of absences and emergencies, for example holiday or sick leave, with the minimum interruption to clients’ business”.
Deal with your paperwork
Before you go anywhere, complete any outstanding paperwork and handle all your correspondences.
Pack your technology
Worrying about what’s happening to your firm will ruin your break. It’s OK to take your laptop and smartphone. Put aside a little time in the day to check in, read and write some emails and make a few calls.
There are lots of software solutions to choose from to keep you in touch with your firm. Skype is a good example, and now many customer relationship management programs can help you stay on top of appointments. Some small firms set up virtual offices with a reliable provider so that someone is around to answer the phone and take messages while you’re on the beach.
Take it easy
You’ve got a hectic work schedule – you have meetings in the office and clients to visit. So why do the same on holiday? You don’t have to do every activity or see all the attractions. Pace yourself, relax and enjoy.