The Rio Olympics are finally here. Images of amazing beaches, amazing weather and even more amazing athletes will be drawing our attention for the next two weeks.

It is often said that world events such as these can have a negative effect on industries like ours as attention becomes focused elsewhere. Is this right, or is it just an Olympic-sized excuse for salespeople to have a snooze?

The reality so far

I can only go by our own family business at the moment as any sort of gauge, but our diary is pretty busy with leads for the coming week. There’s been no drop off in sales activity and there’s not been a single mention of the Olympics by any of the home owners I’ve seen.

The reality is that unlike the home games of 2012, there really should not be any drop off in business levels that can be blamed on the Olympics. With the last games, which were held in London in 2012, you could understand if there was a drag on business. The whole country was behind the games and it’s athletes, and for those two and a bit weeks, we put business to one side to enjoy them.

This time it’s in Brazil, many miles away and many hours behind us. Live TV coverage doesn’t start until lunch time and frankly we have some rather large domestic issues to be dealing with at the moment. So you will understand if consumer interest in this year’s Olympics doesn’t reach the heights of 2012. It might spike when the athletics starts and Team GB’s best hopes of a medal start to participate. The likes of Mo Farah, Jess Ennis-Hill and Greg Rutherford might draw attention.

A poor excuse

Quite frankly, any person or company who tried to use the Olympics as an excuse for a drop in business is using that as cover for poor business skills. Something like the games shouldn’t be stopping any fenestration business from making the most of what is now our industry’s busiest period.

I have been told on a number of occasions that things like this, World Cups, Commonwealth Games etc can have a negative temporary impact. But instead of shrugging shoulders and claiming that there is nothing to be done, businesses in our industry should be using their marketing skills to use world events to their advantage.

So yes, it would be an Olympic-sized excuse for businesses to blame a drop in activity because of these games. These next two weeks, as with all the other weeks in the year, are weeks where we all just need to crack on and get some good solid work done and bring those deals in.

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