Toby Griffin: Make the most of your quiet time 

Toby Griffin, sales director of Domus Interiors in Morpeth, suggests that as things start to go quiet because of the coronavirus pandemic, it’s an ideal time to sort out those niggling jobs you’ve so far been putting off


There have been times during my career in the KBB industry when things have gone a bit quiet.

We’re all used to the seasonality with Christmas being a low for leads – but a frantic time to get installations finished! And then there’s the period from around June to early August where people are normally thinking about their summer holidays and hitting the beach rather than the showrooms.

There have also been disruptive national and international events that have impacted on our industry, such as the credit crunch in 2008, the rioting in English cities in 2011, Brexit for the past three or so years, and now Covid-19. Each felt pretty desperate at the time, and it was hard for people and businesses not to be frozen with panic.

As for me, I’ve only ever seen them as a rare and great opportunity to get those jobs done that you’ve been putting off for years. Jumping on my desk, punching the air, and shouting: “Carpe diem!” (Seize the day!)

Here are some of those regularly put-off jobs I am talking about that a lot of KBB businesses might be able to relate to:

Toby Griffin

Train: Let’s be honest, none of us in this industry knows it all. This is a great time to train yourself, or train your team in areas such as CAD, product knowledge, sales techniques, installation techniques, conflict management, contract and consumer law, etc. The list is almost endless. This training can happen remotely, and there are lots of screen-share and video-conferencing apps that are free and easy to use. YouTube is also a great resource, particularly for installation and building techniques.

Tidy: Have you got a dumping ground? That cupboard, corner of the warehouse, a back room that needs to be emptied out? It’s a dusty, and unenticing job, but most satisfying when finished. You’ll also find lots of things that you lost 10 years ago.

Plan: We’ve nearly all got at least one display that is discontinued and really needs to be replaced. Even if now is not the time to place the order, now can be the time to think about, plan and specify that display, all ready to go for when you are ready.

Create: Is your paperwork and systems/procedures something that rarely gets done or needs an overhaul? Although it isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, and easily put off in normal times, now is the time to really tackle areas of the business such as admin, human resources and health and safety – learning along the way and getting the chance to really talk and consult with your team.

Rest: Although often undervalued, you could just take a break and do very little for a while. Rest, practice mindfulness, and recharge.

So there we go. You have a chance to really address the foundations of your business, and be ready, primed, fit, supercharged, on the starting blocks and just waiting for the starter’s pistol to fire.

This is a rare opportunity. Take it.

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