The holidays will soon be upon us—but no matter what time of year you read this, there will always be something on the horizon, year after year. If you don’t have a plan for how to manage the holidays, you will also, year after year, experience the same holiday-related issues in your business.

As a call center representative or manager, you are the front line of what happens in the business during the holidays, and you have the power to take ownership over what happens. So what can you do about the holidays as a customer service team? How can you ensure that the next set of holidays are the most successful in your company’s history?

Make a plan. Follow these four steps to get started:

  1. Get or make a large-sized, annual calendar.
  2. Write in all of the holidays. It’s critical to make note of the days your office is closed, when staff are in the field, and other details specific to your business.
  3. Talk about the holidays as a team. Look at whether you will, or should, do anything differently. Ask yourselves, How have the holidays we’ve marked out impacted our business in the past?
  4. Make a written plan. Address how much lead time you will need to implement the plan and who will be in charge of the plan. Make a plan for each holiday if necessary, and if it works, change up who is in charge. This doesn’t have to be one person’s burden.

If the holidays seem overwhelming, write down every reason why! Once you can see the reasons, you can start picking them apart to make them better. You can also identify what your coworkers can do to make them better.

This process will empower you to take ownership of the way holidays are affecting your business and to stop being surprised by the calendar every year.