Quick Tips for Small Business Owners

Denise
Managing caregiving responsibilities while running a business can make one day seem like two. We've compiled tips for the small-business owner involved in a caregiving role:

1. Create a Caregiving Mission Statement that integrates your mission for the business. To help you get started, visit here.

2. Because caregiving can consume, determine the times during the day that can be devoted to caregiving responsibilities. For instance, do you devote a few minutes each morning to checking on your care recipient, time during your lunch to researching options and updating family members, and ending the day with another check-in? What's reasonable for you, your care recipient and your business?

3. Create a back-up plan in case you need to be away from the business because of caregiving. Ask yourself all the “What If?” questions you can think of. When developing your plan, ask for feedback from your board of directors, colleagues, employees (if you have them), your business or caregiving coach, and a geriatric care manager.

4. Develop a portable office which can be transported if needed. Take your portable office out-of-town, to your care recipient's home, to your home. And, have a back-up of critical information at the ready.

5. Know who can help (professionals, family members, friends, neighbors) and how they can help; ask for and accept the help. A geriatric care manager can be a terrific investment to help find resources and oversee care.

6. Prepare for the possibility of a revenue decline. How can you make personal and professional adjustments? And, consider: Can you sub-contract business if caregiving becomes the priority? Sub-contracting business means you maintain a revenue source and client base but step back on your involvement. Sub-contracting can work if you use the right sub-contractors (research and check references) and if you communicate effectively with clients.

7. Develop a message to use with clients and employees to use for an extended leave or unexpected change in schedule. When a crisis occurs, you may be choked with emotion. Prepare now for the future, when you may have to explain your situation. Your message may be as simple as:“My mother is not doing well. I'm taking time off to take care of her.” Then, tell employees and clients what they can expect while you're gone (i.e., tell them what your back-up plan is).

8. Train others to help; keep an open mind when delegating responsibilities. Consider this an opportunity to build your referral network and to empower employees. Communicate your expectations and be available when you can.

9. Remember the Three Be's of Caregiving: Be Prepared, Be Honest, Be Well; visit here.

10. Forgive yourself for any bad days; give yourself a fresh start the next day. And, consider: In five years, when you look back at this time, what actions and decisions will make you proud?

Index of Articles

Tips for the Small Business Owner

Tips for the Working Family Caregiver

Tips to Help Decide: Caregiving or Your Career?

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