I ended my year two review with “Bring it on 2020, I’m ready!”…and boy did it listen. I of course didn’t know it at the time, but the year 2020 would pull the rug from under our feet and the world as we know it would change significantly. If only I could take those words back…

Wow!!

That’s pretty much all I can say about 2020 that will also be safe to publish. From a global pandemic to the economic consequences that go along with that, add the craziness that comes with a presidential election year and all of our plans and good intentions for the year were literally turned upside down.

Before we knew it, we found ourselves in lockdown mode with travel plans and in-person activities all canceled. And for the folks that have been working from home for a while, our ability to step away from our working environment (our homes) was abruptly taken away. I’m sure it was (and still is) equally difficult for the folks who now have to get used to working at home while dealing with distance learning for the children, but for us it was really hard not being able to go to our favorite restaurant on a Friday afternoon or taking a weekend trip to break the monotony of life and work at home.

The year definitely set some new standards, changing our lives in many ways we could not have anticipated.

Ah…balance

As with every other year, finding balance amongst all the moving parts of 2020 was an enigma. I think that this topic will be a feature (and goal) of every year for me, as it seems to be the number one challenge for my personality type. Spot the weakness…

I will say this: I did manage to find some balance (if you could call it balance) as I described in this blog post, which certainly led to better physical/mental health and almost certainly prevented a few serious burnouts. In reality though, we were just holding on to the things that were at least working well (or just working) to try and make it through the year.

There’s ALWAYS a silver lining

Even in the toughest of times there are (almost) always something positive to take away…whether it is a lesson learned, skill acquired or relationship strengthened. It is important for me to acknowledge those positive things that happened amidst all the craziness, as it gives me the much needed perspective to move forward. Here are my silver linings for 2020:

  • After deciding that we would rather build our own dream, my wife Carol joined me in the company to help out with marketing, sales and other back-office stuff. Freeing me up to focus on the consulting aspect has been a tremendous help, and having a more structured sales & marketing approach is definitely going to pay dividends in the long run.
  • In 2020 our customer relationships really paid off. It was our best year from a commercial perspective and I am very thankful that we were able to stay busy during an otherwise tough year.
  • We also managed to add one new customer, and our goal is to keep doing that every year.
  • I finally got it together in the second half of the year and figured out how to keep blogging more consistently. I’ll have more concrete numbers next year, but so far it looks very positive.

I’m not going to tempt 2021 with any challenging remarks, but we’ll keep moving onwards and upwards and keep doing what we’re doing.

2 thoughts on “Owning my own business: Lessons learned from year three

  1. Suzan says:

    Love reading your updates! Good luck

    1. Thank you Suzan 🙂

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