Ho Ho Ho. Happy Holidays!
That’s the goal anyway, right? Happy, unstressful holidays, despite the fact that you’re smack dab in the middle of producing the best yearbook ever. So, here’s a checklist of things to get out of the way now so you don’t panic when you’re up to your chin in wrapping paper and bows.
1. Complete your first deadline. It doesn’t matter if those first pages were due in November, December, or even early January. Do all you can now to make sure all pages are in to the plant. Put everyone on staff on the job of identifying those last few faces, or writing the last three captions, or getting those last elusive scores. The last thing you want to worry about while shopping, cooking, entertaining and enjoying is incomplete yearbook pages. And just imagine how wonderful it could be to come back to school in January without the dread of an eminent deadline!
2. Complete proofing names and mug photos. Even if you are not planning on submitting your mug pages between now and January, this task is fairly easy, but can be time consuming. These pages often require the least amount of design-time, and once the mug photos are all ready to go, they and can be used to help complete a deadline if other content pages can’t be completed.
3. Set up mini-deadlines for your January or early February deadline. The real key here is to just plan ahead. If everyone knows what is expected of them before they return from the Holidays, there will be fewer surprises and more opportunities to catch glitches before they become issues. A mini-deadline schedule helps keep both you and your staff informed of progress and on track to complete your deadlines on time.
4. Do a ladder inventory. Do you have enough pages for all your parent ads? Did one or more of your winter sports make the playoffs and need additional coverage? Was there an unexpected awesome assembly or all-school event? Didn’t see as many business ads as anticipated? A couple of school activities cancelled due to weather? Make corrections to your ladder and advise your yearbook representative of any changes to your page totals.
5. Have Holiday Yearbook sale. Call it whatever you like, but make sure you have an all-out media blitz for your last sale of the year. Post it on your Yearbook Facebook Page; make a sale video and post it on YouTube after you show it on your video morning announcements; create fun radio-like commercials for your audio morning announcements; put up posters with creative, story-telling slogans; make an announcement for your school’s auto-dialer; post the information on your school’s website and/or parent information site like School Loop or Infinite Campus; add an incentive for all those who purchase a book before the end of the year, like names go into a drawing for gifts to iTunes, Best Buy, Wal-mart or wherever your students really like to shop.
5.5 Celebrate. Have a wonderfully big Holiday party. Decorate your work environment, play reindeer games, sing holiday songs and eat lots of holiday cookies. Or, make it a classy event by dressing up and enjoying a holiday banquet at a local restaurant. If students are willing, have a re-gift exchange or new gift exchange with a dollar cap. Maybe it’s as simple as watching some classic holiday videos together. It doesn’t really matter how you celebrate–just that you celebrate.
And, if you take care of these year-end items, everyone will have a stress-free, happy holiday.