Do any of the below symptoms resonate with you as a pet business owner?
Working 7 days a week
No time for your own life
No time with friends or family
Putting off other important things
Trying to do it all
Highly stressed and anxious
Lack of motivation / loss of energy
Home life and health is suffering
Getting angry at little things that normally wouldn’t set you off
Loss of patience
Loss of focus/concentration
Resentful Isolated / imposter syndrome
This is a LONG list, but when we created our survey asking pet business owners what burnout looks like for them, these were some of the most common responses we got (and this is only SOME of them)… and it’s simply not okay.
We get into business because we crave freedom, we crave independence - We simply want to create a life we can enjoy while doing what we love!
We don’t anticipate the fallout that occurs because we start on such a strong momentum that we don’t realize when we’ve pushed ourselves over the edge and fallen into a downward spiral of burnout. The adrenaline rush of trying to be successful ends up hitting us in the face when we realize:
We still aren’t as successful as we want to be
We just can’t keep going on this trajectory
We’re not as happy or as passionate as we once were and we all of a sudden ‘come to’ and question how the heck we got here
So, what are some things we can do to help reduce some of the burnout and turn this thing around?
Set proper boundaries!
We compiled a list straight from our upcoming Burnout Guide (coming on Black Friday!) on 11 boundaries to set for your pet business ASAP to reduce stress and overwhelm. Here they are:
These can include things like cancellation policies, payment holidays, holiday policies, weather policies - you name it!
2. Communication Channels
Set your preferred communication channels for clients, and let them know which are appropriate at what times and for what needs.
3. Business Phone vs. Personal Phone
Can you separate your business number vs. your personal number? Google Voice could be a great option for you!
4. Office Hours
An easy one to set right now - and make sure communication is clearly stated everywhere so people know when to expect a response from you.
Setting clear expectations and deadlines for payments, scheduling calls, signing contracts, filling out paperwork, etc. can make ALL the difference!
6. Out of Office Protocols
Keep clients in the loop when you’re out of the office. Point them in the right direction if you’re unable to help them (who can they reach out to if they’re interested in working with you, if they need to schedule/cancel, or if there’s an emergency?).
Auto-responders are one of the best things you can set up for your pet business! This allows questions to be answered before you have time and are able to sit down and respond.
8. Adding to Your Team (New Staff Members)
This is such a common hurdle for growing pet businesses, as many clients get used to working with a particular person, which typically starts out as you (the owner!). So, set some boundaries and provide clear communication about what to expect when adding to your team!
9. Handling Difficult Situations
Difficult situations are unfortunately an inevitable part of business. It’s how we handle them that makes them manageable and less likely to occur in the future! Most boundary setting comes from past occurrences. From there, you can begin to optimize your contracts, emails, and information you send out to clients as they onboard to your business. Set templates up so you AND your team (if you have one) are prepared and ready to respond if/when these situations arise.
10. Onboarding Systems
If you’ve been following Pet Marketing Unleashed for any amount of time, you likely know how obsessed we are with onboarding!! We firmly believe that even just implementing a bomb onboarding process for your clients could dramatically reduce your overwhelm and burnout. There are so many ways to do this, but setting up systems, templates, and strategies ahead of time can change EVERYTHING here!
11. Contact Form Organization
This is an easy way to help gather information that can save you time! Asking the right questions and simplifying the form allows more, aligned people to fill it out and get started on working with you.
Once you figure out what boundaries you want to set in your pet business, it’s just a matter of getting them implemented and strictly enforced in your business so the burnout can fall to the wayside and you can focus on other business growing activities (or… GASP… perhaps plan a vacation or spend more time with your family)!
If you’re looking for some extra guidance when it comes to the details of getting these boundaries in place, things like…
Tips for enforcing boundaries
Templates for putting these boundaries to use
Digging into burnout itself
Learning to say no in business
Finance, self-care, and productivity tips in relation to burnout
Then we’re creating something that might just change your life.
We’re launching the Burnout Guide for Pet Businesses, a 100+ pg. PDF complete with audio files to listen to the chapters on the go! This guide is for pet service businesses like dog walkers, pet sitters, dog trainers, pet photographers, doggie daycare and boarding facilities, etc. who are looking to release some of the pressure they face daily to do everything and be everything for their business. The focus is on finding ways you can establish boundaries and set up systems in your pet business to help reduce some of that burnout you’re experiencing.