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Dec 26, 2018

As 2018 is coming to an end, I wanted to take some time to share my adventures and misadventures this year.  It has been a world wind of lessons learned, lots of trail and errors, victories and laughter.

In this episode - I share:

  • A new health discovery
  • My 2018 adventures and lessons learned - there are lots of them!
  • Discovering my own voice
  • The joys of pivoting
  • The 2018 goals - did I make them?
  • Plus, I share my 3 big goals in 2019

2018 was an incredible year for me, I’m can’t believe how much I’ve learned and grown. And how many times, I had to learn to be gentle with myself. As an entrepreneur, we know that time is always a challenge and there is never a shortage of a list of things to do. And honestly, I forgot to take breaks, like real fun social breaks. I was substituting my corporate work alcoholic behavior for another kind.  That was definitely not the intent.

In fact, I went to an off-beat innovative hormone specialist to find out more about my autoimmune condition, because I get no information from regular doctors. She did all the different tests and many other types and the results made me laugh, cry and pause for reflection. My cortisol levels were super high! Yup, stress. I’ve been internalizing stress.

Do you remember that book ‘Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff’? Well, we may not need to ‘Sweat the small stuff, but we need to deal with these things & not ignore them’. We can ignore the one off small things but, we cannot ignore the trends of small issues, that become medium or large ones.

So, I’ve made some small changes in life.  

One, I’ve started to only plan to do 3 key things each day, 3 outcomes - two work ones and 1 personal one. Many of the projects that I’m working on are pretty big ones, so I need to break things down into manageable tasks and across a realistic duration.   

I’ve started to plan more fun items over the weekend. I put a list of together of some close friends & family that I absolutely adore and made sure that I’ve made some plans to see them and doing some fun things with them. In fact, you know that I’m a huge Masterchef fan. Well, two weeks ago, thanks to my googling and advance planning, I got to have dinner prepared by Masterchef Canada Judge, Alvin Leung and the Masterchef Canada 1st winner, Eric Chong.  

And sleep… I now, turn off electronics by 10pm at night and don’t look at it till the morning. It has made a big difference in my sleep. I use my Google Home to set the alarm and play my radio/news and it’s really made a difference in my sleep.  

Okay, 2018: The adventures and misadventures.

There were 3 goals that I had made in 2018.  The 1st one was to re-brand CanInnovate. I dropped the ‘h’, so that it's just CanInnovate. We even cleaned up and developed a richer website.

The 2nd goal, was that I was going to develop an online course. Taking the corporate world & management consulting best practices and unleashing it for others to benefit from. I got a little sidetracked, when I got asked to teach at George Brown College, Intro to Management Consulting. I ended up teaching many of the topics, which means. That lots of materials have already been prepared.

I may be delayed in this goal, but I will be having a free webinar in Jan 2019, where we are going to talk about sales proposals and the top 3 mistakes that people make. January is the beginning of a new sales cycle, so a great time to start thinking ahead. I’ll put the link in the show notes, so that you can easily register. Completely free.

The 3rd goal, was that I wanted to give back. I love volunteering and helping others. I actually did some research on a few different organizations, however, I couldn’t understand how much was being given to charity and how much was administrative fees. I like transparency. So, I met up with an old colleague of mine, who just sold his business for a fair amount of money. But, he started a charity, where he helps underprivileged by providing access to Education and Healthcare.

He’s a good man, with great values. He does it because he has daughters and wants to create something that they can be proud to be part of.  I really believe that education and awareness Is instrumental in overcoming any obstacles & perception challenges. So, I will partner with an organization that has the same set of shared values.

There were a few big lessons that I learned this year…

One- I had to make some staff changes.  I wish I had done it earlier. In fact, on episode 19 with Alain Gorbeau, from Farmlead, He had given some great advice.

Learning to really have the discipline or be able to realize faster that you’re in one of those situations and pull yourself back when you’re tempted to either hire someone that isn’t exactly right or to make excuses for someone that just isn’t fitting for whatever reason.

Alan Gorbeau, Farmlead

Oh boy… I didn’t do this properly. I didn’t trust my instincts, I kept thinking that I haven’t coached them enough or that I’m not clear enough. I took the blame. Nope, not any more. I need to trust my instinct. I need people that can help drive things forward, with minimal supervision. I have hired experienced people, so I need them to step up to the plate and be the CEO in their own domain. So, that was a big ‘aha moment for me’

Second lessons learned - I need to stop over-planning things and get faster into execution mode. I need to let go of my wanting it to be perfect. I can’t help it! I love what I do and I want it to be perfect. I’m just passionate at what I do. However, I do recognize that time is a precious commodity and there are places where I can go to get additional support.  I’m going to switch into 10% planning mode and 90% into execution mode.

Lastly, The Value of Pivoting. I often forget that I can shift and move and make changes, whenever I want to.  It’s actually quite fun. So, we decided to pivot. It’s the management consultant in me. As these Innovators share their best practices and lessons learned. I also wanted to depend my knowledge and skills in this area by offering masterclasses, where we can gain those tactical skills.

We’ve had a few of these masterclasses from mindset (Episode 45: Innovation Mindset), negotiations (Ep 57: The Art of Negotiation), vulnerability (Ep 58: Vulnerability is the new advantage). We have lots more coming. It’s really imperative to stay on top of industry trends, update our skill sets and not wait, for our bosses to guide us. We need to take control of our careers.

So, being that I’ve learned that pivoting is a good thing, I've actually only planned for Q1 & Q2 of 2019. That way, I can be open to shifting and conducting lessons learned. Who knows where the future will take us.

So, what’s in store for the next six (6) months

  1. Publishing my Networking book - it’s nearly done and I can’t wait to share it. It’s inspired by my students at George Brown as this was a topic that they wanted more help in. The idea is that it’s about connecting as individuals for multiple reasons, not just for career development. We all have different reasons, different challenges - so, whether you’re looking for career opportunities, or new friends or new relationships. It’s about connecting with people that share common values.
  2. Conducting free sales webinar & even local workshops- I’ve already got the materials developed from the course I taught and I’m going into execution mode. You can find the link to register for the free webinar in the show notes.
  3. To finalize the volunteer partnership, so that we can start to make an impact on the world. I truly believe that education and awareness is instrumental in overcoming any challenges and obstacles. If children start teaching their uneducated parents, then we have a hope for the future. We need to provide opportunities for those that don’t have that privilege.

I’m pretty excited about 2019 and all the new twists and turns that I’m about to discover. My new year's resolution is to continue to push the boundaries and unleash my curiosity. Every time, I try something new a new adventure presents itself.

Thank you for being part of my journey and I really can’t wait to hear about your new adventures in 2019.  I really wish everyone a very happy and healthy holiday season that is filled with lots of love curiosity and laughter! Get some much needed rest and lots of TLC.  

Talk soon!