It’s not too early to start planning strategies to handle the holiday rush with grace. Your stress will be less if you take care of certain tasks early.

1. Decide what retail lines you want to carry this holiday season. Come up with cute gift ideas beyond the typical nail polish and files. Place your retail order well in advance to ensure timely delivery. This will give you plenty of time to attractively package and display your merchandise.

2. If you are sending out seasonal cards, pick them out now while the selection is good. (Smart shoppers will have purchased them for 50%-off last January.) Get your mailing list in order. You can even begin writing and addressing your cards so in December all you have to do is put them in the mail.

3. If you are giving each client a gift, begin looking for some special items to purchase or make yourself. If you don’t have a specific gift in mind, check out your local beauty supplier.

4. Design and order your holiday gift certificates. Beautifully packaged certificates or gift cards are in high demand this time of year. Display them in high-traffic areas.

5. Decide if your salon will be open for longer hours during the holidays and figure out how those hours will be staffed.

6. Remind your regular clients to schedule their holiday appointments early.

7. Plan and reserve a date for a client open house, an employee holiday party, and any kind of charitable giving event.

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