The middle to back end of October saw a quiet period. It was the first real quiet period we had had all year really. I expected it to be honest, it had to die down at some point. The focus has shifted from household items to toys and presents in the run up to Christmas. Windows for Christmas just aren’t that ideal gift it seems.

But just before the year starts to wither away, the last minute rush begins. That rush of people that realise that there is only a few business weeks left to go round the showrooms, look for the windows and doors they like and make sure they get them fitted before they want to put the decorations and the Christmas tree up!

It’s a funny old industry we work in. We plug ourselves day in, day out, 365 days a year, yet there are so many that leave the task of replacing their windows and doors until the very last minute, right at the end of the year when the holidays are approaching, the dark nights are here and weather starts to go downhill very quickly. In a way it’s good for us and in another way it’s not.

It’s good for the industry as it provides a boost right at the end of the year when things start to tail off. Without the Christmas rush, the industry might as well shut up shop for the months of November and December! The rush gives our sales people a nice little cash boost for presents and booze buying, and the same goes for our fitters. The accounts look better at the end of the year and the stats make better reading.

However it is the nature of this business which provides the downside. Even though the buying public has had 10 months of the year in which to organise their replacement windows and doors, there are still many that get rather shirty and ‘up in your grill’ when you start to explain that they may have left it too late to get them in before Christmas. It’s frustrating because we all then bend over backwards to make sure we can get the windows in sooner so that we win the business. Not that we get much thanks for it. Consumers at this time of year tend to be quite difficult to deal with and it makes selling to them not very enjoyable.

After a quiet couple of weeks, things picked up for us quickly again over the weekend and at the start of this week. We’ve managed to seal 3 large contracts, one being a rather tasty £25,000 contract. And yes, all these customers would like these fitted before Christmas. Not a problem. But at the current rate of sales, we’ll be telling people that fittings before Christmas are now over and that they’ll have to wait. Nothing much we can do about that!

Have any of you guys started to see a surge in business as the holiday period starts to creep ever closer?