It’s that time of year again, to set personal and professional goals that we have every intention of keeping.
Believe it or not, I actually managed to keep both of my 2014 resolutions; to end the year with my business in the black and to network like the mortgage depends on it. You can read more about my 2014 goals, successes, and failures in my previous post “2014 Year in Review.”
This year I’m going to take things a step further and set some stretch goals in addition to the “softballs” that I know I can achieve.
So here they are…
Network with more photographers:
I spent a lot of time in 2014 building a network of other local business people. I became very active in the Silver Spring Chamber of Commerce, Business Networking International (BNI), and other networking groups. Where I failed, however, was in building relationships with other photographers. Sure, I have a few go-to people that I know and trust but I think that having a strong network of photographers will help us all grow and thrive. What about competition, you ask? Frankly, I believe that there is more than enough work out there for all of us and by working together we will all benefit.
In addition to networking with just other photographers I also plan to find, join, and become active in at least one networking group that specifically targets event professionals.
Back in 2011, I challenged myself to do a “Project 365” where I shot and posted a new photo every day for an entire year. The process was challenging, but rewarding, and helped me see the world around me in a different way. I play to do a similar thing this year, but primarily with my iPhone. I’m not looking to create amazing artwork here, I just want to keep the creative juices flowing. If all goes to plan, I’ll be posting to Instagram every day and doing a weekly blog post with my photos from the week.
This one is a stretch goal, but one that I think is hugely important and something that I should have started doing years ago. This year I intend to write at least one blog post per week on a different topic. I generally want to keep the posts relevant to my customers so I might have articles on how they can prepare for a session, what to expect, etc.
To take things even further, I also want to start a weekly blog post highlighting a session or job from the previous week. This might not always be possible since much of my work is commercial and can’t be published in my portfolio until the client uses it, but we’ll see how that goes.
So yeah, for those still counting that’s three blog posts per week. One post highlighting a job, one with an article, and one with my photo-a-day weekly recap.
Evaluate New Space:
As much as I like working from my home office, I don’t really like bringing clients here for consultations, sessions, or ordering appointments. Right now, I do consultations and ordering appointments at my client’s homes but I find that I spend way too much time traveling and the overall experience of me lugging in product samples, projector screens, etc. isn’t exactly elegant. I have been fortunate enough to be able to use the photo studios at Washington Artworks for client studio sessions, but I would love to have a “home base” somewhere for my clients to meet me. I’ve been looking into co-working space, industrial space (for a studio and an office) and some other options and I hope to be able to make a definitive decision on whether or not I am going to move forward with this idea by the end of February.
Get my body back in shape:
Yep, what would a New Year’s resolution list be without this one? For me, though, it’s especially important that I take better care of my body. Although I doubt I’ll ever get back down to my Ironman “race weight” of 145 lbs, I hope to at least lose 20 pounds and regain some of the energy that I have lost over the last few years.