The dog days of summer can be trying on any business. It’s the season to stick-handle around staff vacations, supplier vacations and – in some cases – customer vacations.

It can be especially hard trying to keep a business running if it’s a small business with fewer human resources and less flexibility.

Nearly half of the Canadian workforce is employed by businesses with fewer than 100 employees. RBC has compiled a list of tips for small business owners who want to turn downtime into opportunity, reports the Business News Network.

Conduct a mid-year goal review

As you approach the half-way mark for the year, taking stock of your goals will give you a better picture of how the business is doing. Are your goals still realistic? If not, what are the next steps you need to take?

Refresh the business plan

This doesn’t have to be a lot of work, but it does require thoughtful consideration. Ask yourself – are you spending time where it’s most important? Are you doing the kind of work that you want to do?

A time for teambuilding

The summer slowdown also offers the opportunity to talk to employees about their career goals or even train people on new tasks to make the workforce more flexible.

Get social

Summer is a more casual time of year when connecting with new customers, looking for new partnerships and strengthening relationships is easier. It’s an opportune time to grow your network, so host that golf tournament and book those patio lunches.

Reward your staff

Summer could be the time to reward your hardworking staff or build a more cohesive team by taking them out of the workplace to an informal setting – maybe a barbeque.

Get away from it all

Other than declining sales, your number one enemy is burnout. As a business owner, you are your greatest asset, so take some time off to rest and recharge and return with more energy.