I’m just back in the office after nearly two weeks on the road for a short vacation over the 4th of July and then a very lengthy drive for NASGW related events in Washington, Idaho and Montana. After spending a collective 48 hours in the vehicle, I’m ready to experience some different seating accommodations.
But I very much enjoyed the company as my wife joined me on the trip. And the scenery was incredible, at times breathtaking. We are so fortunate in this country to be able to enjoy those landscapes and vistas. Some of us live there, some of us visit. All of us are blessed.
For those of you who spend a lot of time on the road, you know those long hours offer the opportunity for a lot of reflection. Kind of hard to avoid honestly. So I thought a lot about my kids, their college experiences, their careers, impending graduations, and if I’m honest, a bit of time thinking about what it might be like when/if I get to be a grandpa. (For the record boys, I’m not rushing you.) I like to think about the future, dream a little, and try to set some plans in place to achieve a few personal goals.
I also of course had plenty of time to think about work, and some association related goals we have set. Each year, the NASGW Board of Directors sets an agenda and outlines strategic initiatives we’d like to work on. In years past, we’ve had a lot of success and candidly, worked through many of these goals very rapidly.
Sometimes the goals you set for yourself don’t always pan out. That means you need to tweak it a bit, make adjustments, or in some cases be honest and admit it’s just not a good goal any longer.
Because summer is traditionally a slower time in our industry, I find it’s a good time for me to think about those things more than I do during the busy hunting season or the crazy busy “show season” in the early part of each year.
From a big picture perspective, taking time to take a close inner look at your operations is an investment well worth your time. It should include:
- Inventory your products and services – it’s nice to sometimes do this just so you can remember what you actually have and what you actually do. Seems crazy you’d forget, but it’s almost inevitable, I realize we at NASGW do more than I remember.
- Now that you have all those things in front of you and top of mind, evaluate which of those things that could use a retooling, refreshing or renovating.
- If you’ve got room for new and innovative, spend some time working on those things. New and innovative are still very much in demand in our industry, even with the slower climate.
- Finally, give yourself permission to throw out any product or service that doesn’t work. Just stop doing it. It’s remarkably liberating.
I know it’s been a tough year out there for all of you. Even at NASGW we are feeling the effects. But I’ve been around long enough now in this industry, and certainly in life, to know that it’s going to get better. In part because it just works that way, and in part because we’re going to keep working hard to make sure it does.
I hope you can use this time to be prepared for when that happens. You’ll thank yourself for it.
Until next time,