Slowest time of the year? Not in higher ed

Marketer par excellence Seth Godin recently advised his readers to resist the urge to slack off this week and next and instead “focus like your hair is on fire” to complete a project that has been languishing.

In the US, the next two weeks are traditionally the slowest of the year. Plenty of vacations, half-day Fridays, casual Mondays, martini Tuesdays… you get the idea.

What if you and your team went against type? What if you spend the two weeks while your competition (and the forces for the status quo) are snoozing–and turn it into a completed project?

It’s a great idea. Unfortunately, this week and next are among the busiest weeks of the year for those of us who work in higher education. We’re in the throes of orientation week for freshmen, today is a big media event for our campus, we’re in the middle of a search for a director of admissions, our department is interviewing for one position and still recruiting for another, and next week is the first week of the fall semester. Plus I’ve got to finish get started on a feature for our alumni magazine, and it’s due on Monday.

So, if you have the luxury of some time off right now, enjoy it. Then make it a point to revisit Seth’s idea during the quieter season of higher ed. When might that be? For me, it seems to be the dead zone between Christmas and New Year’s.


Author: andrewcareaga

Higher ed PR and marketing guy. Communications director for Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T) in Rolla, Missouri, USA. Slow runner, mediocre guitarist, lover of music and puns, and an avid St. Louis Cardinals fan. I blog and Tweet about #highered, #music, #gocards and #random stuff.

8 thoughts on “Slowest time of the year? Not in higher ed”

  1. Amen. I’ve been scrambling to get stuff done for the past few weeks. Now – November 15 is my busy time. April-July is slow as molasses. I thought my summer would be busier.

    Xmas and New Years is definitely dead. Our campus closes, and I go to Florida. Best time of the year. :)

  2. Florida in December? Dude. I’m jealous. I usually stay in Rolla to play catch-up. (Our campus does not close.) Of course, last year it was a crazy time with our name change under way. Maybe this year will be different. Maybe I’ll get away in December.

  3. Actually it’s pretty dang slow for me right now…everyone is on vacation so no one is around to either give us new projects or tell us to fix stuff we’ve already done. June and July about killed me though so I’ll take it.

    Karlyn, who is so loving the fact that she neither works in admissions or on-campus :-)

  4. I’ve found that my slow time is the 2nd and 3rd week of each new semester, as that is when everyone else gets so busy with their own projects that I become an afterthought. I’ve planned those two weeks to be my content writing retreat – update our site content in the places that don’t get a lot of traffic and therefore dont’ get a lot of attention.

  5. I’m in the unique position of getting tech/email campaign materials together for the year, plus preparing for my fall travel schedule as a recruiter. Definitely excited for a time when I can focus on new ideas!

  6. Slowest times of year: May-mid June, in December after exams-when school starts in January.

    It’s actually quiet this week for move in. We got slammed with projects last week and the week before. Now, we’re just working on getting them done and completed.

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