Many rental company owners are managing two businesses at once. For some folks it's because they have a more "full-time" business they were doing before entering the rental industry. For others, it's that they began with one company and that company gradually evolved into two distinct offerings. In the event industry, for example, it’s very common for event planners to branch out and begin offering others services in order to expand their market reach, and add value to their clients. This is a great way to grow your business, but with this growth comes a whole new set of challenges. Here are 5 tips for managing your rental business in addition to another business:
1 . Keep a Shared Calendar for all Events
When managing more than one business, the most crucial thing is to stay organized. It’s important to know what’s going on for each business on its own, but having a shared calendar will help you see everything that is happening in one location. This will help you to avoid overbooking, and staff appropriately for each event. Google calendar does a great job with this, because they allow you to have multiple color-coded calendars that you can toggle on and off, depending which you need to see at a given time.
2 . Use an Event Rental Software
If you're running two businesses then there is one thing you definitely need: MORE TIME!
The two best ways to save time are: Automation and Organization.
Automation means eliminating all the tedious tasks that are a huge waste of time. Tasks like manually typing quotes, copying and pasting between various systems, and counting inventory in your warehouse.
Organization saves you time both by saving you from scrambling to look for things, and also by saving you from errors, such as double booking inventory. Errors like that cost you a whole lot of time in backtracking, reaching out to clients, and having to repair important relationships.
Overall, using a good rental software management system, such as Goodshuffle Pro will help you maximize your efficiency, so that you can focus on running other areas of your businesses.
3 . Hire Help
Most business owners start out on their own, or with a very small team. It can be hard to let go of your control and hire help, but at some point you will need to in order to continue to grow your businesses and save your sanity.
Here are a few ways to tell that you might need help running your businesses:
- You never have enough hours in the day to get things done
- You’re struggling to maintain a work/life balance
- Clients have to wait more than 2 business days for a response back to emails
If you are unsure of how much help you need, you can start small with a part-time employee to work just a few hours a week. Once your assistant is trained and you have a better idea of what your needs are, you can adjust their hours accordingly.
4 . Block Your Time
Time blocking is a very efficient way to manage your schedule, and time spent on each task. The way it works is that you block set amounts of time throughout your day, and focus on a specific task during each time block.
A time-blocked day might look something like this:
9:00am - 10:00am: Answer emails
10:00am - 12:00pm: Work on projects
12:00pm - 1:00pm: Lunch
1:00pm - 3:00pm: Meetings
3:00pm - 4:00pm: Marketing
4:00 - 5:00pm: Answer emails received during the day
It may seem tedious, but if you plan a week’s worth of time blocking at once, it will help you to increase your productivity and get more done throughout your day, and week.
5 . Be Choosy
The clear theme here is that your time = money when you are running two businesses. That means you have to be selective with how you use it. Learn which clients and which tasks are the most worth your time, and feel comfortable saying "no" to the people and to-dos that are just not worth it.
We hope that you’ll use these tips to help you stay motivated, productive, and happier as you manage your businesses. Cheers to business success!
Curious how Goodshuffle Pro can help you grow your event rental business?
Lauren Mestas is a Wedding & Event Planner based in Albuquerque/Santa Fe, New Mexico. She took over ownership of Darling Details Vintage Decor Rental Co. in the Fall of 2016, and has loved building a collection of unique and vintage items for rent. In her spare time, you'll find her practicing hand lettering, painting & renovating furniture, and writing about weddings.