My Business “Intentions” For The New Year

I’ve never liked the phrase “resolutions”. The meaning I associate with resolution is the “act of solving a problem or dispute”. So when I hear people talk about their New Year’s Resolutions, that’s like saying the previous year was a failure or a problem that needs fixing. Instead, I call my goals for the upcoming year my intentions. I intend to make changes and improvements over the next 12 months, but give myself permission to change my priorities & business goals without the threat of failure.

This year, I developed my intentions for my small business and wanted to share them with you. Hope you find them useful as you map out your own goals for 2013. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Practicing What I Preach:
I feel strongly that public relations professionals who spend the majority of their time working on their personal & company brands are doing a huge disservice to their clients. You know the type of PR person I’m talking about… they’re spending every waking minute tweeting, facebooking, guest blogging and self-promoting their guru-ness all over the place, but never mention their clients.

While I still believe that your PR team should be “heard and not seen”, in this social media age there are so many great tools to help build our expertise in our professional field that it’s a disservice not to take advantage of them.

I teach my clients how to put themselves out there and prove their know-how while blogging & connecting with thought leaders in their fields but I haven’t practiced what I preach for my own business. So, in the spirit of taking my advice, this year I intend to dedicate 10% of my time every week to work on improving our company brand. Expect to see a lot more of us in 2013!

Commit to a Schedule
Committing to a regular content development & blogging schedule is one of the most important components of an effective marketing strategy. I work with my clients to help develop schedules for everything – media outreach, book launches, editorial calendars and blogging timelines, social networking schedules, you name it, we schedule it. Which is why it’s incredibly ironic that I haven’t committed myself to a regular blogging schedule for our own community here!

This is even more proof that I need to start practicing what I preach – so I made it one of my priorities to develop an editorial schedule for 2013. I’ve brainstormed topics that I’m interested in, helpful tips to provide our readers, and industry news that will help small businesses and authors with their marketing strategies.  I intend to post here regularly and hope that you will join me on this journey. 

Become Unavailable
It’s too easy to be accessible 24/7 these days. If I’m not logged on my desktop, I’m on my laptop,  my cell phone, and always on my email. This leaves very little time for reflection and introspection. My business and I both need the quiet time in order to fully process, innovate and grow.

In 2012, I’ve lost the separation between my work and personal life. This is a trend across all industries, not just PR, so I know I’m not alone in this. Trust me, I LOVE what I do (to the point where it doesn’t even feel like work most of the time), but deep-down I know it’s not healthy or productive.

It’s important that I’m giving 100% while working, but I also need to learn to shut down work-mode and be fully present for my family & friends while “playing”. (And yes, this includes logging off Twitter!)  If this sounds like you, please join me in my intention to find better work-life balance in 2013.

Outsourcing More

While I like to think that we can handle everything internally, that’s not always the case. I could pull together an amazing infographic for a client, but it might take me five hours when I could send it to a graphic designer who could finish it in one hour. It will save me time and money in the long run, and those are savings I can pass onto our clients. This year, I intend to find dependable freelancers that I can trust and rely on in a pinch. (If you know of any, feel free to send them our way: info@etchcomm.com)

Don’t Say Yes To Every Request
Anyone who knows me well knows that I have a really hard time saying no. I like to help people whenever and however I can, and often that means sacrificing my priorities to put someone else’s needs first. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, but I am learning that sometimes it’s okay to just say no. This year, I intend to thoughtfully weigh requests for my time and accept that I can and should say “no” more often than I have in the past (and try not to feel guilty about it!).

 

I printed a copy of these goals and taped it above my desk so I can keep them in mind throughout the year.  No excuses allowed.  What are some of your business intentions for the new year? I’d love to hear them! Let’s share this journey together and keep each other accountable in 2013. Onward, my friends! 

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